Psyche and Eros
Interpreting the field of western psychological science through the spiritual principles of the Bahá'í Faith.
This enlightened volume offers a glimpse into the kind of psychology that will come to be the mature fruit of the emerging integration of scientific and spiritual understanding in the 21st century – a psychology that speaks holistically and with philosophical and conceptual rigour, depth and consistency about the harmonizing of behaviour, character, inner experience, and the complex needs of a global society.
In an age of scientism, Diessner’s work has a rare Renaissance quality to it. It builds expertly and seamlessly on state-of-the-art psychological research, infusing it with a profoundly innovative approach to the study of moral and esthetic development, the role of will from an eastern and western perspective, the interdependent lifelong development of knowledge, love, and will, and the beauty and complexity of the human psyche.
His work is enriched by a luminous quality of wisdom, as well as fully-developed cross-cultural and aesthetic sensibilities. It represents integrative research of a new order, of tremendous practical significance in education – an invaluable resource for educators, students of psychology, and social scientists.
'Diessner has presented us with a wonderful collection of articles that no student of psychology and spirituality can afford to miss.
They range from discussing action research to seven-stage theories of spiritual development in Middle-Eastern religious literature, and a critique of Kohlberg’s theory of moral development from a Bahá’í perspective.
The seminal contribution of his work is a theory of the appreciation of beauty as the foundation of moral and spiritual development. Freud used the Oedipus myth as a metaphor for the development of a psychology of love in which the limitations of jealousy and self-destruction are never fully overcome.
Diessner’s stunning conclusion is to use the Bahá’í writings to explore spiritual dimensions of the myth of Psyche and Eros as a root metaphor for spiritual transformation in which the negative forces of the personality, though powerful, do not ultimately prevail, but are transcended in the final union of love and beauty.’
~ John Davidson PhD, School of Psychology, University of Tasmania.
‘The first book of its kind, Diessner has managed to lay a dialectical Bahá’í-scientific foundation for the psychological study of the spiritual lives of people.
Lucid in its prose, inching forth theory from keen insight, Bahá’í scripture and scientific literature, Professor Diessner’s debut book is a must read.’
~ Timothy Richel, Masters in Cognition & Education, University of Washington.
‘Professor Diessner’s varied and profound contributions to a Bahá’í-inspired, spiritual psychology will prove useful to generations of researchers and theoreticians from a variety of cultural backgrounds.
That a single author has written so insightfully and so well on so many themes that animate the concerns of psychologists and psychiatrists around the world is a testament to the scope and depth of Professor Diessner’s illumined mind.’
~ Michael Penn, Professor of Psychology, Franklin & Marshall College.
Author: Rhett Diessner.
Format: Softcover book; 17 x 25 cm; 224 pages.
Publisher: George Ronald Publisher, 2007.