An Empirical Study of Contemplative Prayer as an Adjunct to Psychotherapy

Volume
Volume 13
Issue
Winter 1985
Title
An Empirical Study of Contemplative Prayer as an Adjunct to Psychotherapy
Abstract

The use of Christian contemplative prayer as an adjunct to psychotherapy was investigated. It was hypothesized that (a) the use of contemplative prayer would be associated with improvement in psychotherapy; (b) the use of contemplative prayer would result in an enhancement of spirituality. A time series quasi-experimental design was used in which each subject served as his or her own control. There were nine subjects, three males and six females ranging in age from 21 to 58. All were in therapy. The dependent measures were (a) patients'€™ ratings of distress on target complaints; (b) the trait anxiety scale of the Speilberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory; (c) the Stein and Chu adaptation of Barron'€™s ego-strength scale; (d) Batson'€™s inventory of religiosity; (e) Hood'€™s Mysticism Scale; and (f) the Pauline Comparison Scale. Results gave modest circumstantial support for the research hypotheses. Evidence of psychotherapeutic improvement was a marked decrease in distress on target complains (p<.0001). Enhancement of spirituality was suggested by a positive correlation of time spent in contemplative prayer and the Pauline Comparison scale scores (r=.76, p<.01).

Authors
H.H. Malony and J.R. Finney
Pages
284 - 290
Price
Add to Cart $5.00