Spirituality and Clinical Practice - Essay Sample

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Boston College
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Clinicians have increasingly incorporated the spiritual and psychological dimension in the professional work. They have been required to use evidence-based approaches and demonstrate the effectiveness of the practice. Additionally, there are an increasing number of spiritually orientated psychotherapy articles that attests to the importance of spirituality in clinical practice. The days when therapists were trained to be aware of spirituality and also be sensitive to the needs of the clients are gone (Oxhandler & Pargament, 2014). They are now expected to practice spiritually sensitive psychotherapy proficiently from the initial session to the final part. There is also need to be organized around the central focus point and continue providing a concise, theory-based context to understand the spiritual dimension. This framework can be used in the integration of spirituality in an effective, evidence-based therapy practice.

Spirituality is a conception recognized across the globe, and there is no consensus on how it can be defined. It can include beliefs in a higher being, an examination of the meaning and a sense of purpose and connection. Even though spirituality and religion are not tantamount, there can be a larger correspondence between them. When spirituality is discussed especially in the context of clinical practice, the focus is on how people fulfill what they hold to be the purpose of life. For this reason, it is easier to conceptualize why various definitions have been proposed. There exist two realms of existence according to spirituality which, I concur with. The outer realm involves the interaction with the world while the inner realm includes personal interaction with the world. This inner realm is also the interaction with the transcendental which can be divine. Many people hold that corrective action in the outer realm includes justice and magnanimity and the inner realm involves sincerity (Seinfeld, 2012). These principles often arise in different contexts such that the monotheistic faith one acts reasonably to understand God while Buddhism acts justly to release from distress. However, besides these variations in the beliefs, the spirituality concept in clinical practice is similar to most.

In my practice as a clinical sector, patients need to be treated holistically and not as "disease." A holistic person entails the physical, emotional, social as well as the spiritual dimensions. Ignoring or avoiding any of the attributes make the patient to feel incomplete and can influence the healing process. The aspect of spirituality forms an essential factor of a holistic person, and when addressing the psychiatric issues, it cannot be ignored (Spicker, 2014). A significant number of extremely ill patients often stick to religious beliefs with the aim of coping with their illness. Spirituality has been involved with the widespread practice that forecasts the successful management of illness (Senreich, 2013). A high intrinsic spirituality among patients predicts a more rapid remission in depression more specifically among patients whose physical functioning does not improve.

In a nutshell, it is critical to give credit to spirituality in achieving the wellness of patients, but it should not replace treatments because people discover that illness spike philosophical questions and helps rediscovery of religion. Doctors only have the mandate to cure, relieve or comfort and these responsibilities are conveyed when doctors support the core that provides patients' life meaning and hope that patients want. Putting the issues of spirituality into consideration, therefore, patients can enhance not only patient care but also doctor-patient bond and the overall well-being.


Oxhandler, H. K., & Pargament, K. I. (2014). Social work practitioners' integration of clients' religion and spirituality in practice: A literature review. Social Work, 59(3), 271279.

Seinfeld, J. (2012). Spirituality in social work practice. Clinical Social Work Journal, 40(2), 240244.

Senreich, E. (2013). An inclusive definition of spirituality for social work education and practice. Journal of Social Work Education, 49(4), 548563.

Spicker, P. (2014). Cohesion, exclusion, and social quality. International Journal of Social Quality, 4(1), 95107.

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