Integrative Approaches to Psychology and Christianity
He references to Athens and Jerusalem to help the reader to grasp the theme of the book. Athens represents knowledge through human reason and Jerusalem represents faith. The idea of secular thinking and Christian thinking by Harry Blamers are also examined (Entwistle, 2010). The text defines secular thinking as restricted limits within earth; however Christian thinking is an eternal perspective. Entwistle states that “all truth is God’s truth” and no matter how the truth is discovered the author is God (Entwistle, 2010, pp13). Entwistle noted that it is important to understand the history of Christianity and science.
Galileo made great scientific discoveries, however he was heavily criticized for his findings. The Roman Catholic Church had a hard time understanding scientific method. Overall the Roman Catholic Church deserted the fact Christianity had a part in the development of scientific understanding. Our worldview or life perspective affects how we understand and relate to our experiences and the world (Entwistle, pp56). The experience that a person has impacts their life and the way that perceive truth. Entwistle also discusses questions that where posed by Walsh and Middleton these include, what does mean to be human? What is the nature of the world? , What’s wrong with world, why do things go wrong? and how what can is wrong with my life, be fixed? These questions answer life’s most fundamental questions. Every worldview frames how one understands the world and how one acts in the world (Entwistle, pp61). The author also addresses four themes to help the reader gain an understanding of the Christian world view which include creation, fall, redemption and consummation. Creation addresses the understanding of who humans are and how it relates to the world that we live in.
The fall deals rebellion against God in the garden. Redemption speaks about the forgiveness of our sins that came through the savior of Jesus Christ. Finally Consummation pulls all three previous topics together and is the start of the integration at its core. The pursuit of truth: Epistemology provides understanding for the reader to gain insight to the way that humans process and react to truth. Epistemology is the pursuit of intellectual virtue. It wants to provide an evidentiary basis for belief, rather than one of just opinion. Entwistle then brings up another important topic which is Metaphysics.
Metaphysics can be defined as the philosophical investigation of the nature, constitution and stature of reality. Philosophical anthropology attempts to validate assumptions made by theologians and psychologists about human nature and behavior (Entwistle, pp119). The author provides five models for relating to psychology and theology. These models seek to provide the reader with a clear understanding of the various perspectives about book of God’s word, which reveals the will of God and the book of God’s works which is his expressed power that was first described by Francis Bacon (Entwistle, pp136).
The first model is enemies, which is a commitment to a worldview that disregards either religious belief or the insight of human reason. Secondly he speaks, about spies within this model pragmatic desire to use any means help a person’s wellbeing and also those apart of this model have very little connection to any religious views. The next model is the colonialists whose main allegiance is to a religious system. The neutral parties have gained knowledge from various perspectives. Lastly the allies model states that people find their purpose when they see there selves in right relationship to God.
As Entwistle concludes his work he helps the reader find the road to integration. He also states in order to integrate psychology and Christianity it is necessary to define the contours of psychology and the contours of Christian orthodoxy (Entwistle, pp136). Finally the reader is given insight to the road ahead as it relates to psychology and Christianity. Concrete Response During the reading of this book a story that kept playing in my head was being back in my grandmother’s church in Louisiana.
I can remember being in church and the pastor would often preach that as Christians we should never add or take away anything from the word of God. He would often state that when we do that, we are sinning against God. I remember being in church for what felt like was all day. I would fall asleep and mother or grandmother would pinch me so that I would wake up. The pain was so extreme and I often would think that God was mad at me because I was falling asleep in church. Another memory that comes to mind is whenever the members of my grandmother’s church did not understand something it would often be deemed as the devil.
For example when I was reading the story of what happened to Galileo, could see the members at my grandmother’s church condemning him, because they did not understand the theories that he discovered. My mother told me when she became pregnant with me at age 18; the leaders at church asked her to sit the back of the church because of her sin. Growing as a child I thought we say in the back because the was my mother favorite sit in church. I am so blessed that my mother moved away from Louisianan and we longer attended my grandmother’s church.
If I would have still attended my grandmother’s church it would have impacted my worldview negatively. This memory helped me to gain a better understanding about the impact that our worldview has on life and the ways in we relate to God. Reflection While reading Integrative Approaches to Psychology and Christianity, many questions arose for this author. I understand that the book was written to help professionals use the Christian faith and psychology while at the same to help their clients overcome the barriers they face in life. However whether iris okay to add faith into the counseling session in the secular worldview?
A question I have for the author is how to help counseling professionals know how, and when to integrate with clients. What I enjoyed most about the book is the way Entwistle takes his reader on a journey to discover their feelings and thoughts about integration. While reading this book I was encouraged to think outside of my perspectives. Most importantly I learned that we must allow ourselves the room to grow and change as we receive new knowledge. A strength that the book has was the ability to challenge me personally. Many times while reading the book I found myself questioning many of my thought patterns and beliefs.
I would like to know if there will ever be a common agreement between psychologists and topologists. Action As result of reading this book I am going to implement the Allies model to my career. I would like to help my clients see themselves in proper relationship to God. I will use the model to integrate psychology and theology to gain a more holistic view of my clients. I am also going to keep in mind that a person’s worldview affects how he or she receives and processes truth. Therefore while working with my clients I am going to make an effort to understand their worldview so that I can help them to overcome their trials.
Overall as result of reading this book I would like to be an example of love and grace to my clients. When working with other professionals I am going help them to develop and understand why seeing the clients a holistic perspective is important. I will also stress to my colleagues that when we fail to see our clients from a holistic point of view, we miss out on an opportunity to provide them with tools for success. Reference Entwistle, D. (2010). Integrative approaches to psychology and Christianity: An introduction to worldview issues, philosophical foundations and models of integration. Eugene, OR: Cascade Books.