A Global Perspective
Samuel Bendeck Sotillos [+–]
practicing psychotherapist who has worked for many years in the field of mental health and social services. His focus is on comparative religion and the intersection between culture, spirituality, and psychology. His works include The Quest For Who We Are: Modern Psychology and the Sacred (2023), Paths That Lead to the Same Summit: An Annotated Guide to World Spirituality (2020), Dismantling Freud: Fake Therapy and the Psychoanalytic Worldview (2020), and Behaviorism: The Quandary of a Psychology without a Soul (2017). He edited the volume, Psychology and the Perennial Philosophy (2013), and his articles have appeared in numerous journals and periodicals. He lives on the Central Coast of California.
Psychology today pathologizes all aspects of the human condition without ever examining its own ills, which have caused it to become fragmented. People from non-Western backgrounds are often adversely affected by the limitations of the discipline, and often avoid treatment altogether. By contrast, a true “science of the soul” has existed for millennia in all the world’s diverse spiritual cultures. Although a plethora of modern therapies are now available, they are hindered in their efficacy by having become entirely divorced from sacred reality. This work argues that it is necessary to restore this “science of the soul” by drawing on the perspective of non-Western wisdom traditions as understood since time immemorial. Examples are given of the fundamental differences that are found between modern psychology and the traditional psychologies of various religions, which also existed in the West prior to the Enlightenment era. Furthermore, it will be shown how non-Western philosophy can help rehabilitate an authentically healing psychology in support of promoting sound mental health in our afflicted modern culture. Sacred psychologies, therefore, afford us the best opportunity to tackle the innumerable challenges that confront human beings today, such as trauma, mental illness, addiction, death, and the meaning of our lives.
Series: Global Philosophy
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