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Edited by Richard W. Sears & Alison Niblick
Edited by Richard W. Sears & Alison Niblick

Perspectives on Spirituality and Religion in Psychotherapy

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• 2014 334pp paperback   ISBN: 9781568871523

Perspectives on Spirituality and Religion in Psychotherapy provides an important resource for clinicians seeking ways to address and to integrate spirituality into psychotherapy. Consistent with the diverse landscape of spiritual experience, the volume presents a wide range of spiritual perspectives and practices, which may be integrated within psychological treatment. Each approach at its core considers the unique ways in which psychology and spirituality conjoin to construct meaning and offer resources to cope with the challenges inherent in human life. This text is designed to educate clinicians on the importance of considering spiritual variables when working with clients. The chapters cover a wide range of spiritual traditions and common issues encountered in psychotherapy. The topics are practical and give concrete suggestions on how to work with a variety of spiritual issues that commonly arise in therapy and are brought to life with clinical examples.


"Bravo! This excellent edited book presents a cogent dialogue between Western psychotherapy and spirituality. Richard Sears and Alison Niblick amassed an impressive list of contributors whose fresh voices provide a comprehensive discussion of the relationship between psychotherapy and diverse spiritual orientations. This valuable volume is a must read for novice as well as seasoned clinicians."
     -Lillian Comas-Diaz, PhD,
author of Multicultural Care: A Clinician’s Guide to Cultural Competence, co-editor of WomanSoul:The Inner Life of Women’s Spirituality

"In Perspectives on Spirituality and Religion in Psychotherapy, Richard Sears and Alison Niblick introduce readers to new voices in the psychology of religion and spirituality, and cover a diverse range of spiritual and psychotherapeutic topics. Rather than focus on spirituality in the abstract, this book addresses spirituality directly in the context of psychotherapeutic intervention and illustrates all the benefits and challenges this entails. In sum, Drs. Sears and Niblick and the diverse authors they have brought together have produced a worthy addition to the ongoing dialogue between psychology and spirituality, and between psychotherapists and their clients."

     -Brian Zinnbauer, PhD

"This book is so loaded with research, stories, and practical strategies for psychotherapists and counselors that it serves as not only a fascinating journey through diverse spiritual and religious perspectives, but also as a resource to refer to again and again. Reading it will help clinicians become more well-rounded and compassionate in their communication with clients from a wide range of backgrounds, beliefs, and cultures."
     -Ryan M. Niemiec, PsyD, Psychologist and author of Mindfulness and Character Strengths: A Practical Guide to Flourishing, Education Director, VIA Institute on Character

Table of Contents
About the Editors and Contributing Authors
Edward P. Shafranske
Richard W. Sears and Alison Niblick
Psychological Obstacles on the Spiritual Path
Richard W. Sears
Considerations for Addressing Religious Beliefs and Spiritual Concerns
with LGB Clients in Psychotherapy
Brigitte D. Beale and Heather N. Wilder
The Impact of Religious/Spiritual Beliefs on Survivors of Traumatic Events
Darius Campinha-Bacote and Adam D. Akers
Addressing Religious Concerns When Using Mindfulness in Psychotherapy
Harlan K. Higginbotham, Jr.
Buddhist Psychology: A Comparison with Western Psychotherapeutic Theories
Harlan K. Higginbotham, Jr.
Mindfulness in Dialogue: Zen Koans for Getting Unstuck
James Myogak Foster and Richard Jishou Sears
Down-to-Earth Wellness: The Juxtaposition of Earth-Centered Faith and
Secular Psychotherapy
Alison Niblick
Yoruban and Dahomey African Diaspora Religions 101: A Primer for
Mental Health Professionals
Alison Niblick
Traditional Native American Spirituality 101: A Primer for Mental Health Professionals
Alison Niblick
European Paganism 101: A Primer for Mental Health Professionals
Alison Niblick
A Therapist's Guide to Understanding African Pentecostalism
Adaobi C. Iheduru
Psychotherapy and the Black Church: Helping Mental Health Professionals
Understand the Spirituality of African Americans
Angela L. Harris
The Intersection of Religion, Psychotherapy, and HIV/AIDS Within the
African American Community
Joann Mawasha and Richard W. Sears
Perspectives of Christian Clients Pursuing Psychotherapy
A.J. McConnell
The Clinical Integration of Psychology and Christianity
Elizabeth A. Ellington and Richard W. Sears
Psychotherapy and Jewish Tradition
Michal Goldring Keidar and Alison Niblick
Christianity, Islam, and Judaism in Couples Therapy: Assessment and Intervention
Candace Beck, Erin N. Armour, and John K. Lodge
None of the Above: Nonbelief and Psychotherapy
Sandra Seaman

CE Program
A supplemental 18-credit, 180 question continuing education program is available for this book.  To order the complete program (this book and CE test module, or test module alone if you already have access to this book), click here: Perspectives on Spirituality and Religion in Psychotherapy - CE Program (18 Credits)

For information about our approved continuing education sponsorships
 and acceptance by state boards, please click here: 
Continuing Education

About the Editors
Richard W. Sears, PsyD, MBA, ABPP, DMin, is the Director of the Center for Clinical Mindfulness & Meditation and a core faculty member of the Psy.D. Program in Clinical Psychology at Union Institute & University.  He is also Clinical/Research faculty at the UC Center for Integrative Health and Wellness, Volunteer Associate Professor of Psychiatry & Behavioral Neurosciences at the UC College of Medicine, Research/Psychologist Contractor with the Cincinnati VA Medical Center, and Clinical Assistant Professor at Wright State University School of Professional Psychology.  He received his MBA and PsyD from Wright State University, and his Doctorate of Ministry degree in Buddhist Studies from Buddha Dharma University.  Dr. Sears is a board certified clinical psychologist in Cincinnati, Ohio, where he conducts a small private psychology and consultation practice, specializing in mindfulness-based groups.  He is lead author of five books: Consultation Skills for Mental Health Professionals; Mindfulness in Clinical Practice; Mindfulness: Living through Challenges and Enriching Your Life in This Moment; Competence in Building Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy; and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for PTSD.  Dr. Sears is also a fifth degree black belt in To Shin Do/Ninjutsu.  He once served as a personal protection agent for the Dalai Lama of Tibet with his teacher, Stephen K. Hayes.  He has studied and practiced mindfulness, meditation, Zen, and other Eastern Wisdom traditions for over 30 years, and has been ordained as a teacher in three traditions.  He received authority to teach koans (inka) from his Zen teacher Paul Wonji Lynch, in the lineage of Seung Sahn.  Dr. Sears’ website is:

Alison Niblick, PsyD,
currently works as an adult outpatient psychologist with low-income and homeless adults at a community mental health agency in northern Kentucky.  Dr. Niblick received her PsyD from Wright State University School of Professional Psychology, and completed BA degrees in psychology and religious studies at Albright College.  Her completed doctoral dissertation is titled “The Impact of Minority Faith on the Experience of Mental Health Services: The Perspectives of Devotees of Earth Religions.”  She also completed her predoctoral internship at The Fremont Community Therapy Project in Seattle under the direction of Dr. Laura S. Brown, where she received training in feminist psychological theory, dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR).  Dr. Niblick’s clinical and research interests are in issues of diversity, feminist theory, social justice, and psychological trauma, broadly defined.
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