On the positive side, some individuals experience increased appreciation of life, greater perceived closeness to God, increased sense of purpose in life, and enhanced spiritual well-being even following devastating events such as disasters and rape.For others, trauma can be associated with loss of faith, diminished participation in religious or spiritual activities, changes in belief, feelings of being abandoned or punished by God, and loss of meaning and purpose for living.In turn, the meaning drawn can have a significant impact on the survivor's symptoms and functioning.Several studies have indicated that negative thoughts or attributions about God, such as "God has abandoned me," and "God is punishing me," or, being angry at God are associated with a number of poor clinical outcomes (1).Some may find that their spiritual life is intricately linked to their association with a church, temple, mosque, or synagogue.Others may pray or find comfort in a personal relationship with God or a higher power.
Research also indicates that healthy spirituality is often associated with lower levels of symptoms and clinical problems in some trauma populations.
The beliefs and training experiences of practitioners may also influence whether and how spirituality is incorporated into therapy.
Evidence suggests that trauma can produce both positive and negative effects on the spiritual experiences and perceptions of individuals (1).
Spirituality is a personal experience with many definitions.
Spirituality might be defined as "an inner belief system providing an individual with meaning and purpose in life, a sense of the sacredness of life, and a vision for the betterment of the world." Other definitions emphasize "a connection to that which transcends the self." The connection might be to God, a higher power, a universal energy, the sacred, or to nature.
Spirituality is a broad concept with room for many perspectives.