Advertisement

Pastoral Psychology

, Volume 67, Issue 5, pp 475–491 | Cite as

Transcending Fear and Anxiety: The Great Cleanup

  • Yolanda Dreyer
Article
  • 124 Downloads

Abstract

This article demonstrates that a state of anxiety, which includes fear, can be harmful and destructive not only on the personal but also on the communal and societal levels. Democratic South Africa (post-1994), a highly religious country, is a case in point. Rather than experiencing and conveying to others the positive, life-affirming effect of faith, pervasive anxiety and fear have taken hold of the people, the effect of which is disruptive and destructive. The author argues that the challenge is to transcend fear and anxiety, participate in “the Great Divine Cleanup,” and touch the lives of others with a message of freedom and hope.

Keywords

Anxiety and fear Violent crime Life-affirming faith Pastoral care 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This article is based on a paper read at a conference of the New Directions in Pastoral Theology group hosted October 5–7, 2016, at Princeton Theological Seminary, Princeton, New Jersey.

References

  1. Abrahams, N., Jewkes, R., Martin, L. J., Mathews, S., Lombard, C., & Vetten, L. (2009). Mortality of women from intimate partner violence in South Africa: A national epidemiological study. Violence and Victims, 24, 546–556.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Almeida, A. M., Koenig, H. G., & Lucchetti, G. (2014). Clinical implications of spirituality to mental health: Review of evidence and practice guidelines. Revista Brasileira de Psiquiatria, 36(1), 176–182.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Anderson, N. T. (2000). Christ-centered therapy. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.Google Scholar
  4. Anderson, N. B., & Anderson, P. E. (2003). Emotional longevity: What really determines how long you live. New York: Viking Press.Google Scholar
  5. Association of Religion Data Archives, The. (2010). South Africa: Religious adherents, 2010 (World Christian Database). www.thearda.com/internationalData/countries/Country_207_2.asp. Accessed 17 September 2016.
  6. Barrett, M. J. (2009). Healing from relational trauma: The quest for spirituality. In F. Walsh (Ed.), Spiritual resources in family therapy (pp. 267–286). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  7. Baumeister, R. F., Exline, J. J., & Sommer, K. L. (1998). The victim role, grudge theory, and two dimensions of forgiveness. In E. Worthington (Ed.), Dimensions of forgiveness: Psychological research and theological perspectives (pp. 79–106). Philadelphia: Templeton Foundation Press.Google Scholar
  8. Belicki, K., Rourke, J., & McCarthy, M. (2008). Potential dangers of empathy and related conundrums. In N. Malcolm, W. DeCourville, & K. Belicki (Eds.), Women’s reflections on the complexities of forgiveness (pp. 165–186). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  9. Bonelli, R. M., & Koenig, H. G. (2013). Mental disorders, religion and spirituality 1990–2010: A systematic evidence-based review. Journal of Religion and Health, 52, 657–673.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Bowlby, J. (1973). Separation: Anxiety and anger. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  11. Bratcher, R. G., & Nida, E. A. (1961). A translator’s handbook on the Gospel of Mark. Leiden: Brill.Google Scholar
  12. Brown, J. (2002). The disciples in narrative perspective: The portrayal and function of the Matthean disciples. JBL Society of Biblical Literature. Leiden: Brill.Google Scholar
  13. Bruce, D. (2010). Anger, hatred, or just heartlessness? Defining gratuitous violence. South African Crime Quarterly, 34, 13–21.Google Scholar
  14. Capps, D. (1994). The pastor as bearer of hope. Lutheran Journal of Theology, 20, 75–89.Google Scholar
  15. Carlson, E. (1997). Trauma assessment. New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  16. Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation. (2007). The violent nature of crime in South Africa: A concept paper for the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security Cluster. Johannesburg: South African Department of Safety and Security.Google Scholar
  17. Charuvastra, A., & Cloitre, M. (2008). Social bonds and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. Annual Review of Psychology 59:301–328.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Coetzer, C., & Snell, L. (2012). Belangrike meta-teoretiese riglyne betreffende die emosioneel verwonde persoon [Meta-theoretical guidelines regarding emotionally wounded people]. Verbum et Ecclesia, 33(1).  https://doi.org/10.4102/ve.v33i1.574.
  19. Crossan, J. D. (2010). The greatest prayer: Rediscovering the revolutionary message of the Lord’s prayer. New York: HarperCollins.Google Scholar
  20. Darwin, C. (1872/1965). The Expression of the emotions in man and animals. Chicago: Chicago University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Davis, L., & Theron, A. (1999). The utilization of self-help groups as a form of victim empowerment. South African Journal of Criminology, 12(1), 57–62.Google Scholar
  22. De Beer, C. S. (2007). Filosofiese besinning oor geweld: Uitdagings aan informatiseringstrategieë [Philosophical reflection on violence: Challenges for information strategies]. Tydskrif vir Geesteswetenskappe, 47(4), 4–7.Google Scholar
  23. DeCourville, N., Belicki, K., & Green, M. M. (2008). Subjective experiences of forgiveness in a community sample: Implications for understanding forgiveness. In N. Malcolm, W. DeCourville, & K. Belicki (Eds.), Women’s reflections on the complexities of forgiveness (pp. 1–20). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  24. DeVries, A. C., Glasper, E. R., & Detillion, C. E. (2003). Social modulation of stress responses. Physiology and Behavior 79(3), 399–407.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Dirsuweit, T. (2002). Johannesburg: Fearful city. Urban Forum, 13(3), 3–19.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Dykstra, C., & Bass, D. C. (2010). Times of yearning, practices of faith. In D. C. Bass (Ed.), Practicing our faith: A way of life for searching people (pp. 1–12). New York: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar
  27. Eagle, G., & Kaminer, D. (2015). Traumatic stress: Established knowledge, current debates and new horizons. South African Journal of Psychology, 45(1), 22–35.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Elrod, J. W. (2003). Kierkegraad and Christendom. Princeton Legacy Library. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  29. Emmons, R. (2006). Spirituality: Recent progress. In M. Csikszentmihalyi & I. S. Csikszentmihalyi (Eds.), A life worth living (pp. 62–81). New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  30. Engelbrecht, S. K. (2009). Exposure to violent crime, fear of crime, and traumatic stress symptomatology. Doctoral diss., University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.Google Scholar
  31. Enright, R. D., & Fitzgibbons, R. P. (2000). Helping clients forgive: An empirical guide for resolving anger and restoring hope. Washington, DC: APA Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Enright, R. D., Gassin, E. A., & Wu, C. (1992). Forgiveness: A developmental view. Journal for Moral Education, 21, 99–111.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Enslin, M. S. (1972). The book of Judith: Greek text with English translation. Jewish Apocryphal Literature. Leiden: Brill.Google Scholar
  34. Erikson, E. H. (1968). Identity, youth and crisis. New York: W. W. Norton.Google Scholar
  35. Everly, G. S., & Lating, J. (2003). Personality-guided therapy for posttraumatic stress disorder. Washington DC: APA Press.Google Scholar
  36. Folkman, S., & Moskowitz, J. (2004). Coping: Pitfalls and promise. Annual Review of Psychology, 55, 745–774.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Frankl, V. (1963). Man’s search for meaning: An introduction to logotherapy. Boston: Beacon Press.Google Scholar
  38. Fredrickson, B. (2001). The role of positive emotions in positive psychology: The broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions. The American Psychologist, 56(3), 218–226.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Fredrickson, B. (2004). The broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions. The Royal Society, 359, 1367–1377.Google Scholar
  40. Fredrickson, B. L., & Joiner, T. (2002). Positive emotions trigger upwards spirals towards emotional well-being. Psychological Science, 45, 172–175.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Freedman, S. (2008). Forgiveness education with at-risk adolescents: A case study analysis. In N. Malcom, W. DeCourville, & K. Belicki (Eds.), Women’s reflections on the complexities of forgiveness (pp. 93–119). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  42. Goldingay, J. (2010). Old Testament theology, Volume 3: Israel’s life. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press.Google Scholar
  43. Green, D., & Roberts, A. (2008). Helping victims of violent crime: Assessment, treatment, and evidence-based practice. New York: Springer.Google Scholar
  44. Helgrave, T. D., Froeschle, J., & Castillo, Y. (2009). Forgiveness and spirituality: Elements of healing and relationships. In F. Walsh (Eds.), Spiritual resources in family therapy, (pp. 301–322). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  45. Hills, P. C., & Pargament, K. I. (2003). Advances in the conceptualization and measurement of religion and spirituality: Implications for physical and mental health research. American Psychologist, 58(1), 64–74.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Izard, C. E. (2013). Anxiety: A variable combination of emotions. In C. D. Spielberger (Ed.), Anxiety: Current trends in theory and research (Vol. 1) (pp. 51–106). New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  47. Jung, C. G. (1968). Man and his symbols. New York: Dell.Google Scholar
  48. Kaminer, D., & Eagle, G. (2010). Traumatic stress in South Africa. Johannesburg: Wits University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Kierkegaard, S. (1950). Furcht und Zittern [Fear and trembling] (E. Hirsch, Trans.). Düsseldorf: Engen Diderichs Verlag.Google Scholar
  50. Kierkegaard, S. (1983). Der Begriff Angst [The concept of anxiety] (E. Hirsch, Trans.). Gütersloh: Gütersloher Verlagshaus.Google Scholar
  51. Klein, D. F. (1981). Anxiety reconceptualized. New York: Raven Press.Google Scholar
  52. Krog, A. (2015). Exploring changes in identity and narrative through the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission and some indigenous texts. In P. Couture, R. Mager, P. McCarroll, & N. Wigg-Stevenson (Eds.), Complex identities in a shifting world: Practical theological perspectives, International Practical Theology 17 (pp. 181–196). Zürich: LIT Verlag.Google Scholar
  53. Krug, E. G., Dahlberg, L. L., Mercy, J., Zwi, A. B., & Lozano, R. (2002). World report on violence and health. Geneva: World Health Organization.Google Scholar
  54. Lazarus, S., Tönsing, S., Ratele, K., & Van Niekerk, A. (2009). An exploratory study into the risk and protective factors to male interpersonal violence. Cape Town: Medical Research Council of South Africa.Google Scholar
  55. Lelliott, P., Marks, I., McNamee, G., & Tobena, A. (1989). Onset panic disorder with agoraphobia: Toward an integrated model. Archives of General Psychiatry, 46(11), 1000–1004.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Louw, D. (1999). Pastoraat as vertolking en ontmoeting [Pastoral care as interpretation and encounter]. Pretoria: RGN-uitgewers.Google Scholar
  57. Louw, A. (2007). Crime and perceptions after a decade of democracy. Social Indicators Research, 81, 235–255.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Louw, D. (2012). Network of the human soul. Stellenbosch: SUN Press.Google Scholar
  59. Maguen, S., & Litz, B. (2012). Moral injury in veterans of war. Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Research Quarterly, 23(1), 1–16. www.ptsd.va.gov.Google Scholar
  60. Malcolm, W. (2008). The timeliness of forgiveness interventions. In W. Malcolm, N. DeCourville, & K. Belicki (Eds.), Women’s reflections on the complexities of forgiveness (pp. 275–292). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  61. Marks, I. M. (1987). Fears, phobias, and rituals. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  62. Marks, I. M., & Nesse, R. M. (1994). Fear and fitness: An evolutionary analysis of anxiety disorders. Etheology and Sociobiology, 15, 247–261.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Mathews, S., Abrahams, N., Jewkes, R., Martin, L., & Lombard, C. (2013). The epidemiology of child homicides in South Africa. Bulletin of the World Health Organization, 91, 562–568.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Matzopoulos, R., Norman, R., & Bradshaw, D. (2004). The burden of injury in South Africa: Fatal injury trends and international comparisons. In A. Suffla, A. Van Niekerk, & N. Duncan (Eds.), Crime violence and injury prevention in South Africa (pp. 9–21). Pretoria: UNISA.Google Scholar
  65. Matzopoulos, R., Prinsloo, M., Butchart, A., Peden, M., & Lombard, C. (2006). Estimating the South African trauma caseload. International Journal of Injury Control and Safety Promotion, 13, 49–51.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. McCullough, M. E., Fincham, F. D., & Tsang, J. (2003). Forgiveness, forbearance, and time. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84, 540–557.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Mikulincer, M., Shaver, P. R., & Pereg, D. (2003). Attachment Theory and affect regulation: The dynamics, development, and cognitive consequences of attachment-related strategies. Motivation and Emotion 27(2), 77–102.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Moltmann, J. (1974). Het experiment hoop: Verkenningen [The experiment of hope: An exploration]. Bilthoven: Amboboeken.Google Scholar
  69. Moltmann, J. (1981). The Trinity and the kingdom of God. London: SCM.Google Scholar
  70. Moreira-Almeida, A., & Koenig, H. G. (2006). Retaining the meaning of the words religiousness and spirituality. Social Science and Medicine, 63(4), 840–845.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Noonan Sabin, M. (2002). Reopening the word: Reading Mark as theology in context in early Judaism. New York: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Norris, F. H., & Sloane, L. B. (2007). The epidemiology of trauma and PTSD. In M. J. Friedman, T. M. Keane, & P. A. Resick (Eds.), Handbook of PTSD: Science and practice (pp. 78–98). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  73. Ong, A. D., Bergeman, C. S., & Miin Chow, S. (2012). Positive emotions as a basic building block of resilience in adulthood. In J. Reich, A. Zaudra, & J. Hall (Eds.), Handbook of adult resilience (pp. 81–93). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  74. Pargament, K., & Brandt, C. (1998). Religion and coping. In H. G. Koenig (Ed.), Handbook of religion and mental health (pp. 111–128). New York: Academic Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. Pargament, K. I., & Cummings, J. (2010). Anchored by faith: Religion as resilience factor. In J. Reich, A. Zautra, & J. Hall (Eds.), Handbook of adult resilience (pp. 193–212). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  76. Parlotz, N. (2002). The institute for the study of spirituality and trauma. http://www.geocities.com/frbobparlotz/isstparlotz.html. Accessed 1 September 2016.
  77. Petersen, N. R. (1978). Point of view in Mark’s narrative. Semeia, 12, 97–121.Google Scholar
  78. Pretorius, R. (2008). Armed robbery, violent assault and perception of personal insecurity and society as a risk. Acta Criminologica, 21(2), 81–91.Google Scholar
  79. Rapoport, D. C. (1982). Terror and the messiah: An ancient experience and modern parallels. In D. C. Rapoport & Y. Alexander (Eds.), The morality of terrorism: Religious and secular justifications (pp. 13–42). New York: Pergamon.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. Rhoads, D., & Michie, D. (1982). Mark as story: An introduction to the narrative of a gospel. Philadelphia: Fortress.Google Scholar
  81. Roberts, A., & Green, D. (2007). Crisis intervention with victims of violent crime. In R. Davis & A. J. Lurigio (Eds.), Victims of crime (pp. 255–266). Thousand Oaks: Sage.Google Scholar
  82. Schermer, V. (2003). Spirit and psyche. New York: Jessica Kingsley.Google Scholar
  83. Schiraldi, G. (2009). The post-traumatic stress disorder sourcebook. New York: McGraw-Hill.Google Scholar
  84. Seedat, M., Van Niekerk, A., Jewkes, R., Suffla, S., & Ratele, K. (2009). Violence and injuries in South Africa: Prioritizing an agenda for prevention. The Lancet, 374, 68–79.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  85. Seedat, M., Van Niekerk, A., Suffla, S., & Ratele, K. (2014). Psychological research and South Africa’s violence prevention responses. South African Journal of Psychology, 44(2), 136–144.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0081246314526831.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  86. Seimarco, G., Neria, Y., Insel, B., & Kiper, D. (2012). Religiosity and mental health: Changes in religious beliefs, complicated grief, posttraumatic stress disorder, and major depression following the September 11, 2001 attack. Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, 4(1), 10–18.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  87. Smith, S. (2004). Exploring the interaction of trauma and spirituality. Traumatology, 10(4), 231–243.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  88. Snyman, C. (2008). Criminal law. Durban: LexisNexis.Google Scholar
  89. Southwick, S. M., & Charney, D. S. (2013). Resilience: The science of mastering life’s greatest challenges. New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  90. Stairs, J. (2000). Listening for the soul: Pastoral care and spiritual direction. Minneapolis: Fortress.Google Scholar
  91. Stewart, R. B. (Ed.) (2006). The resurrection of Jesus: John Dominic Crossan and N. T. Wright in dialogue. Minneapolis: Fortress.Google Scholar
  92. Stoian, I. (2016). Phobos Theou from O.T. to N.T. In M.-L. Dimitru Oancea, A.-C. Halichias, & N.-A. Popa (Eds.), Expressions of fear from antiquity to the contemporary world (pp. 69–78). Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars.Google Scholar
  93. Taylor, C. (2002). Varieties of religion today. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  94. Tolan, P. H. (2007). Understanding violence. In D. J. Flannery (Ed.), The Cambridge handbook of violent behavior and aggression (pp. 5–19). New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  95. Turner, D. L. (2008). Matthew. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic.Google Scholar
  96. Van Aarde, A. G. (2015a). Vredemakers as kinders van God (Matt 5:9): ‘n Pragmaties linguistiese lesing [Peacemakers as children of God [Matt 5:9]: A pragmatic linguistic reading]. HTS Theological Studies, 71(1).  https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i1.2935.
  97. Van Aarde, A. G. (2015b). Little faith: A pragmatic-linguistic perspective on Matthew’s portrayal of Jesus’ disciples. In die Skriflig, 49(1).  https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v49i1.1898.
  98. Van Hook, M. (2016). Spirituality as a potential resource for coping with trauma. Social Work and Christianity, 43(1), 7–25.Google Scholar
  99. Verheule, A. F. (1997). Angst en bevrijding: Theologisch en psychologisch handboek voor pastorale werkers [Anxiety and liberation: Theological and psychological handbook for pastoral caregivers]. Baarn: Callenbach.Google Scholar
  100. Verheule, A. (1998). Angst en bevrijding: Theologisch en psychologisch handboek voor pastorale werkers [Anxiety and liberation: Theological and psychological handbook for pastoral workers]. Nijkerk: Callenbach.Google Scholar
  101. Vorster, W. S. (1967). Die begrip phobos kai tromos in die Nuwe Testament, met verwysing na die Semitiese agtergrond [The concept phobos kai tromos in the New Testament, with reference to the Semitic background]. Magister dissertation, University of Pretoria, South Africa.Google Scholar
  102. Vuylsteke, Y. (2015). Ibrahim Index of African Governance: Sub-Category Personal Safety. London: Mo Ibrahim Foundation.Google Scholar
  103. Walsh, F. (2006). Strengthening family resilience. New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  104. Walsh, F. (2009). Religion, spirituality, and the family: Multifaith perspectives. In F. Walsh (Ed.), Spiritual resources in family therapy (pp. 3–30). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  105. Walsh, F. (2012). Facilitating family resilience. In M. Ungar (Ed.), The social ecology of resilience: Handbook of theory and practice (pp. 173–186). New York: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  106. Weingarten, K. (2010). Reasonable hope: Construct, clinical applications and supports. Family Process, 49, 2–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  107. West, G. (2003). Judith. In J. D. G. Dunn & J. W. Rogerson (Eds.), Eerdmans Commentary on the Bible (pp. 748–757). Grand Rapids: Eerdmans.Google Scholar
  108. Williams, S. L., Williams, D. R., Stein, D. J., Seedat, S., Jackson, P. B., & Moolman, H. (2007). Multiple traumatic events and psychological distress: The South Africa stress and health study. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 20(5), 845–855.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  109. Wolter, M. (2008). Das Lukasevangelium. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck.Google Scholar
  110. Worthington, E. (2006). Forgiveness and reconciliation: Theory and application. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  111. Wright, N. T. (2008). Surprised by hope: Rethinking heaven, the resurrection, and the mission of the church. New York: HarperCollins.Google Scholar
  112. Young, M. A., Herman, S., & Davis, R. (2007a). Introduction to victims of crime. In R. Davis (Ed.), Victims of Crime (pp. 1–7). Thousand Oakes: Sage.Google Scholar
  113. Young, M. A., Herman, S., Davis, C., & Lurigio, A. (2007b). Introduction to victims of crime: The interaction of research and practice. In R. Davis (Ed.), Victims of crime (pp. 1–6). Thousand Oaks: Sage.Google Scholar
  114. Ysseldyk, R., & Matheson, K. (2008). Forgiveness and coping. In N. Malcolm, W. DeCourville, & K. Belicki (Eds.), Women’s reflections on the complexities of forgiveness (pp. 143–163). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  115. Zuckerman, M., & Spielberger, C. D. (2015). Preface. In M. Zuckerman & C. D. Spielberger (Eds.), Emotions and anxiety: New concepts, methods, and applications, Psychology Library Editions: Emotion (pp. vii–x). London: Psychology Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of TheologyUniversity of Pretoria, South AfricaPretoriaSouth Africa

Personalised recommendations