psychology stands at the interface of psychology and spiritual
experience. It is the field of psychology which integrates
psychological concepts, theories, and methods with subject matter and
practices of the spiritual disciplines. Its interests include spiritual
experiences, mystical states of consciousness, mindfulness and
meditative practices, shamanic states, ritual, the overlap of spiritual
experiences and disturbed states such as psychosis and depression, and
the transpersonal dimensions of relationships, service, encounters with
the natural world, and many other topics. The central concept in
Transpersonal Psychology is self-transcendence, or a sense of
self-identity which is deeper or higher, broader, and more unified with
the whole. The root of the term, transpersonal or literally "beyond the
mask," refers to this self-transcendence. While this self-transcendence
recognizes a value to the personal, it also holds nonduality and the
transpersonal as the more fundamental ground of being and consciousness.
Its orientation is inclusive, valuing and integrating the following:
- the psychological and the spiritual,
- exceptional mental health and suffering,
- ordinary and non-ordinary states of consciousness,
- modern Western perspectives, Eastern perspectives, postmodern insights, and worldviews of indigenous traditions, and
- analytical intellect, direct experience, and contemplative ways of of knowing.
psychology is a field of inquiry which offers insights based on
research and experience and provides practices for evaluating and
confirming (or disconfirming) its findings. It is also a field of
practice integrating and evaluating methods for accessing and
developing full human potential and realization.
psychology has benefits for both psychology and the spiritual
disciplines. Psychology can expand toward a fuller and richer
understanding of the full range of human experience. The spiritual
disciplines can incorporate insights about human development,
suffering, and healing, and methods to deal more skillfully with the
psychological issues that arise during the spiritual search.
Transpersonal psychology also provides perspectives on spiritual
systems to help understand their similarities and differences.