The emerging role of Buddhism in clinical psychology: toward effective integration.

Shonin, E., Van Gordon, W. ORCID: 0000-0002-5648-3043 and Griffiths, M.D. ORCID: 0000-0001-8880-6524, 2014. The emerging role of Buddhism in clinical psychology: toward effective integration. Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, 6 (2), pp. 123-137. ISSN 1941-1022

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Research into the clinical utility of Buddhist-derived interventions (BDIs) has increased greatly over the last decade. While clinical interest has predominantly focused on mindfulness meditation, there has also been an increase in the scientific investigation of interventions that integrate other Buddhist principles such as compassion, loving kindness, and ‘non-self’. However, due to the rapidity at which Buddhism has been assimilated into the mental health setting, issues relating to the misapplication of Buddhist terms and practices have sometimes arisen. Indeed, hitherto, there has been no unified system for the effective clinical operationalization of Buddhist principles. Therefore, this paper aims to establish robust foundations for the ongoing clinical implementation of Buddhist principles by providing: (i) succinct and accurate interpretations of Buddhist terms and principles that have become embedded into the clinical practice literature, (ii) an overview of current directions in the clinical operationalization of BDIs, and (iii) an assessment of BDI clinical integration issues. It is concluded that BDIs may be effective treatments for a variety of psychopathologies including mood-spectrum disorders, substance-use disorders, and schizophrenia. However, further research and clinical evaluation is required to strengthen the evidence-base for existent interventions and for establishing new treatment applications. More importantly, there is a need for greater dialogue between Buddhist teachers and mental health clinicians and researchers in order to safeguard the ethical values, efficacy, and credibility of BDIs.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Psychology of Religion and Spirituality
Creators: Shonin, E., Van Gordon, W. and Griffiths, M.D.
Publisher: American Psychological Association
Date: May 2014
Volume: 6
Number: 2
ISSN: 1941-1022
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Record created by: Linda Sullivan
Date Added: 14 Dec 2015 15:36
Last Modified: 05 Jul 2022 08:30

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