Anxiety and the Rise of Religious Experience

Volume 3
Winter 1975
Anxiety and the Rise of Religious Experience

Humans everywhere worship. To do so seems native to human personality. Liturgies of worship grow out of psychological and spiritual sources deep within the human personality. Those psychic (psyche) sources of human religion are closely related to the native human anxiety patterns discernible in human personality. Some forms of worship and religion meet the deep human psychic needs better than other forms. Most religious practices in human life and history reinforce the anxiety of man through the frustrating dynamics of guilt and the sense of the ultimate helplessness in the face of human morality problems and mortality threat. Authentic Judeo-Christianity is unique in its gospel of grace. That cuts to the center of the human problem with the assurance of both the meaningfulness of life and the promise of immortality. Distinguishing between what is authentic spirituality and what is psychic pathology is therefore, crucial.

Dr. J.H. Ellens
11 - 18
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