Psychology

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    Bassett, Rodney L. and Kelly M. Bassett et al.

     (190K)

    Seeking Forgiveness: Considering the Role of Moral Emotions

    "Sandage, Worthington, Jr., Hight, and Berry (2000) pointed out that most of the research on forgiveness has focused on the process of granting forgiveness rather than seeking forgiveness. Therefore, in this project, college students were asked to recall a recent event from their past where they harmed someone with whom they had a relationship. They were then asked to rate their feelings following the transgression such that it was possible to determine the extent to which they experienced sorrow or guilt (Narramore, 1984). Participants also indicated how they responded to the situation. In addition, a few weeks later, these same students were invited to respond to a dispositional measure designed to tap their general tendencies toward experiencing sorrow or guilt. One of the particularly interesting findings from this study was that the efforts to measure sorrow seemed to split into two factors. One of these sorrow factors seemed to predict healthy patterns of seeking forgiveness while the other factor did not."
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    Brown, Warren S.

     (423K)

    Numinous or Carnal Persons? The Practical Costs of Inner Souls and Selves

    "How many essential substances am I composed of? Am I a body; a body and a soul; a body and a mind; a body, a mind, and a soul; or what about a body, a mind, a soul, and a spirit? These questions highlight the issue of dualism (or tri-part-ism or fourpart- ism) vs wholism (or monism). Another way to ask this question would be the following: Am I essentially numinous (i.e., a non-material spirit) or am I essentially carnal (i.e., a physical body). The answer one gives to this question is fundamental to almost every aspect of our understanding of human nature..."
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    Brown, Warren S.

     (490K)

    Did My Neurons Make Me Do It?

    "In this lecture I will be considering the following question: How is it possible for physicalism to avoid reductionism and biological determinism? Is it possible to give a reasonable account of free will within a physicalist understanding of human nature? I will try to defend the position that physicalism can be understood in a nonreductive way – that is, in a way that does not presume that all humanness can be reduced to 'nothing but' neurophysiology or the laws of physics, or that human behavior is entirely determined by physical laws."
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    Brown, Warren S.

     (401K)

    The Knotty Implications of Recent Neuroscience Research

    "In today’s lecture, I wish to start from the beginning. I will attempt to restate the problem in an unambiguous way, survey the current neuropsychological data that are making the issue particularly acute for 21st Century Christians, and suggest a method for going about resolution of these questions. In the last part of this lecture, I will describe some adjustments we might want to make in our theological anthropology in order to establish greater resonance between theology and neuroscience."
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    Delaney, Harold D. and Timothy E. Goldsmith

     (157K)

    Scientific Psychology and Christian Theism

    "Christian theism has much to say not only about metaphysical issues, but also about human nature, and what we can know, and how we should think and behave. In many such areas there is overlap with the realm of psychology, and there are numerous points of at least apparent conflict as well as agreement. In the current paper, we attempt to explore some of these points of contact by giving a brief review of scientific psychology from a Christian perspective."
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    Dilman, Ilham

     (171K)

    Psychology and Human Behaviour: Is there a limit to psychological explanation?

    "When I speak of a limit to psychological explanation in general and to psycho-analytic interpretation in particular what I mean is that there are different forms of behaviour which when they are genuine are not susceptible of psycho-analytic interpretation. To interpret them is to assume that they are not genuine, to respond to and to treat them as such. It is to attribute a motive to them which, if it existed, would change their character. Let me try to bring out the logic in question by a very simple example and then go on to extend it to more interesting cases."
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    Hodges, Bert H.

     (267K)

    Remapping Psychology: A New Look at Values in Scientific Ontology

    Bert H. Hodges explores the possibility that values are the ontological fundamentals within which human activities such as perception, development, and emotion are enacted. The relation of values to "laws" and "rules" in scientific accounts is considered, and a theory of values is sketched that clarifies the enigmatic character of behavior. Values, it is proposed, are heterarchical, legitimating, and frustrating. Mr. Hodges teaches social, cognitive, and theoretical psychology at Gordon College.
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    Jeeves, Malcolm A.

     (378K)

    Psychologising about God and Religion

    "The headline in part one of The Times on August 1st this year read, "Therapy is re-placing religion says Carey". (By therapy Archbishop Carey was referring to psychotherapy). The same day an even bigger headline in part two reporting an interview with the radio and television psychiatrist Anthony Clare was headed "Why I have lost faith in God". And to cap it all the widely read author Maeve Bichy was reported by Clare's interviewer as having said of her loss of belief in God, "I woke one morning and suddenly he wasn't there, It was like not believing any more in Santa Claus". Which all shows that popular and media interest in psychologising about God and religion is alive and well."
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    Maloney, H. Newton

     (162K)

    John Wesley and Psychology

    "John Wesley was the founder of the Methodist movement. As a significant figure in Christian history, Wesley has import for modern Christian psychology in at least four ways: (1) his contention that the findings of science could be used by Christians for the glory of God and the alleviation of human suffering; (2) his personal example of how difficult it is to put faith into practice in daily living; (3) his teachings about the grace of God and the possibility of Christian perfection; and (4) his concern for social justice and the welfare of the poor. This essay discusses these issues and demonstrates how a study of Wesley can influence modern Christian psychology."
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    Nelson, James M.

     (165K)

    Missed Opportunities in Dialogue Between Psychology and Religion

    "In the Middle Ages, studies of the natural world, human behavior and theology were part of an interwoven body of knowledge. However, in modern times an increasing divide has separated science and religion. A careful review suggests that currents and accidents in intellectual and social history have served to unnecessarily foreclose lines of thought that might lead to rapprochement of religion with science, including psychology. Developments in Western views of epistemology and the philosophy of science have been a major factor in this estrangement."
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    Polischuk, Pablo

     (219K)

    Perspectives on the Self: Substantial and Dialogical Aspects

    "To the individualistic and rationalistic notions which have characterized Western thought in modern times, currents in the psychology of the self have added globalized and dialogical accounts. Several metaphors have been utilized to convey structural and functional aspects of the self, such as the computer (information processing) and the narrative (regarding the self as multivoiced and engaging in intrapsychic and intersubjective dialogue). The latter paradigms tend to render the self as constructive, but unbound to any referential anchor and elaborating its own reality. This paper deals with a redefined substantial/dialogical personhood, which integrates aspects from psychological theory and theological reflection. The self is defined as being grounded in God, in others, and in the cosmos, with a sense of ontological, epistemological, and teleological basis derived from biblical anthropology. Several propositions and implications are provided as derivatives of the notions presented, with implications drawn from such attempts at psychological-theological integration."
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    Price, Daniel J.

     (206K)

    Discovering a Dynamic Concept of the Person in Both Psychology and Theology

    "In the past century and a half scientists have increasingly perfected their tools for the study of human persons. Little surprise, then, that the relatively new field of modern psychology has steadily grown in influence. Traditionally, there has been a good deal of animosity between modern psychology and Christian theology. This has been especially true of the psychoanalytic tradition begun by Freud and carried on by a number of his followers. Does this longstanding antipathy need to remain? Post-Freudian object relations psychology has developed from Freud's insights into the unconscious processes which influence human behavior. But object relations has, for the most part, rejected Freud's biological reductionism. Object relations theories have built upon Freud's foundational discovery of the importance of childhood, while pushing back the veil from the infant's relations to the parent. Could there be analogies here between what the object relations psychologists are uncovering and what the Bible tells us about ourselves? I propose that such is the case if one compares the theological doctrine of the person found in the writings of Karl Barth with certain aspects of object relations psychology."
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    Reber, Jeffrey S.

     (156K)

    Secular Psychology: What's the Problem?

    "This...paper...introduces the issue and examines some of the main problems that arise out of the modern secularized relationship between psychology and religion—specifically problems that stem from secular psychologists’ failure to recognize and appreciate peoples’ religious experiences and religion’s ethical resources. In what follows, I will discuss how secular psychologists’ efforts to disentangle psychology from religion are inconsistent with the intentions of early secularists who recognized the important and necessary role of religion in academia and never intended for it to be excluded from the marketplace of disciplinary ideas."
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    Richardson, Frank C.

     (179K)

    Psychology and Religion: Hermeneutic Reflections

    "In this article, I would like to indicate some ways that hermeneutic philosophy (Heidegger, 1962; Gadamer, 1989; Guignon, 1983; Taylor, 1989), sometimes termed ontological hermeneutics, might contribute to a more plausible picture of the world and the place of humans in it that would be open to religious claims and meanings. Also, I will suggest a few key ways in which such an ontology calls for a revised understanding of the aims and methods of the social sciences, including psychology. Finally, I suggest that a hermeneutic perspective gives us insights into what might be the most fruitful kind of interaction between psychology and religion."
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    Slife, Brent D.

     (198K)

    Are Psychology's Main Methods Biased Against the Worldview of Many Religious People?

    "This article examines some of the more problematic aspects of recent efforts to integrate psychology and religion. Specifically, many religious people—psychology's main consumer and client—make different assumptions than many psychologists about human nature and the world. This article attempts to explicate many of these conflicting assumptions, particularly as they affect psychological methods. Therapeutic and experimental methods are frequently viewed as theologically, if not philosophically, neutral to the subject matter they are investigating. This article aims to dispel this common myth. To discover or highlight these "hidden" assumptions of traditional methods, they are first contrasted to the assumptions of interpretive practices. However, interpretive practices are themselves often viewed as theologically neutral. Consequently, psychological methods are also compared to a theistic mode of inquiry that assumes that an active God is necessary to proper investigation."
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    Struthers, William M.

     (120K)

    Defining Consciousness: Christian and Psychological Perspectives

    "The psychologist is precariously fixed on the bridge that connects the "hard" natural sciences of biology, chemistry, and physics with the "soft" social sciences of sociology and anthropology. The mind/ body, free will/determinism and nature/nurture problems are significant issues that the psychologist investigates to connect the "spiritual" aspect of life with the empirical world. While psychology is a discipline that has undergone a number of changes in its brief history, developments in other fields have had a considerable influence on how people view psychological questions and issues. Consequently, many cognitive and physiological psychologists have found themselves engaged in research that necessitates an interdisciplinary approach."
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    Tjeltveit, Alan C.

     (190K)

    Psychology's Love-Hate Relationship with Love: Critiques, Affirmations, and Christian Responses

    "Christian psychologists’ contributions to understanding love of God and neighbor have fallen far short of their potential. A major reason, I argue, is psychologists’ love–hate relationship with love. Psychologists raise challenging questions about love (or some understandings of love), based on their (usually implicit) ethical intuitions (e.g., that telling battered women to love their abusers harms them). In addition, some understandings of love (e.g., pertaining to obligations, choices, and/or divine action) fit poorly with psychology’s natural scientific methods. On the other hand, psychologists conduct research relevant to love and most psychologists seem deeply committed to love. Psychologists thus both critique love (hate it) and affirm it."