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Rediscovering Mental Wellness: The Impact of Spirituality on Mental Health

Disconnecting our psychology from our spiritual epistemology subjects us to serious mental health conditions

There is unprecedented mental anguish in the world today. Depression, anxiety, and substance abuse have reached epidemic proportions globally. 

The WHO reports that 264 million people on the planet are depressed. Depression is the third most costly disability worldwide. Each year, 17 million American adults are depressed. Over 16 percent of youth in late adolescence currently face depression, and the impact of depression on suicide accounts for the second leading cause of death in adolescents surpassing auto accident deaths.

Battling Depression: The Urgent Need for Spiritual Healing

With depression, anxiety, and substance abuse at epidemic levels, a holistic approach that includes a strong spiritual engagement maximizes our mental well-being

Multiple studies indicate medication provides unsatisfactory results for depression and anxiety, while a reconnection of our innate spirituality has the potential to raise our capacities and mental well-being. We actually become neuroprotected and thus resistant to depression.

Empirical evidence shows when the brain engages in connection to a higher power it has stronger brain structures with the capacity to more effectively move through the mental challenges we face in life. In fact, these same studies show that the most profoundly impactful protective factor against depression is a strong spiritual life.

There’s an innate human capacity which every one of us possesses. We are born with an ability to connect our neurospirituality to improve life through living in a transcendent sphere with the world around us.

Spirituality Beyond Faith Traditions: A Universal Connection

Scientific evidence shows we are all innate spiritual beings. When we fortify our spiritual center, we strengthen our connection to one another. We are hardwired with this spiritual capacity that will connect us — but we have to choose to engage this part of our humanity.

Science shows that spirituality is one-third innate. This is our connection to God, the universe, mother earth, or whatever construct to which you subscribe. The other two-thirds is environmental. Our parents and grandparents teach us our religious practices.  

A life of spiritual connection does not mean you need a particular faith tradition. What this wiring reinforces is a connection in the human mind that unites us as beings beyond our human capacity alone. These capacities are weakened over time through social scripting, moral relativism, and other narrative ills that have all but mocked this crucial component of our humanity. 

The Trauma-Depression Connection: Healing through Spiritual Practice

A growing body of evidence supports the integration of spiritual practices alongside mental health care for effective healing from trauma and depression

A strong spiritual stasis is critical to help us through the normal suffering we all experience in this life. Whether you have a faith practice or prefer to reference your spirituality in nature, music, or the universe, an active practice of meditation, and prayer, will deepen and strengthen your personal wellness and connections with those around you.

As we look more critically at the research, we are seeing more and more evidence for the benefits of healing from trauma and depression through a stronger spiritual practice. Relational spirituality reduces risks for addiction by 80% and depression by 75%. Science is actually seeing a thickening in the cortical region and across brain area related to perception, reflection and orientation.

From a psychotherapy perspective, spiritual healing is developing our connections to the only source from which we find connection beyond and us to the human family, nature and all life-giving forces.

Rebuilding Relational Strengths: The Power of Spiritual Connection

With a disintegrated spiritual wiring, many use maladaptive behaviors to cope such as drinking, drugs, gaming, and sex. Our relationships suffer as self-centered ideologies take over. No longer do we care for the well-being of one another with respect and dignity. We don’t serve or sacrifice — we don’t love.

As a social scientist, I have watched the lives of many clients improve, find peace and happiness return, and relationships improve all by doing spiritual reconnection work. Their normal life challenges no longer derail them. All of this, and so much more can be accomplished by the reconnection to our own innate spiritual core. 

With so much chaos and tension in the world, with so much anxiety and struggle, my encouragement to all is to reconnect yourself to your fullest potential — your innate spiritual strength. You will be amazed at what can happen.

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