Encyclopedia of Psychology and Religion

2020 Edition
| Editors: David A. Leeming

Psychotherapy

  • Todd DuBoseEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-24348-7_545

On Caring Rather than Curing

Psychotherapy is an art and a science of caring for those in distress with the goal of helping others toward more fulfilling and meaningful experiences in their everyday existence. The ways in which this project is done is extremely diverse, and in fact, there are hundreds of practices in our contemporary situation that would claim the name “therapy.” Although various kinds of histories have been written, I would like to offer a read of this history that highlights its inherent religiosity.

Discerning the beginnings of psychotherapy depends on how one defines this process and whether or not one understands psychotherapy as a science, an art, or both. I argue that its foundation rests both in the history of the cura animarum, or the care of souls, and in the history of consolation literature and practices across a variety of religious traditions, “cura” originally meant “care” rather than “cure” (McNiell 1977; Jalland 2000). The psychotherapist was an iatros...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Chicago School of Professional PsychologyChicagoUSA