A brand new examine revealed within the educational journal Psychology of Consciousness explores a captivating but distant analysis nook of psychological science — analyzing what it’s wish to have a “mystical expertise.” In response to the researchers, having a mystical expertise, reminiscent of feeling like you’re half of a better power and/or quickly dropping contact with time and house, could be a signal of wholesome psychological functioning despite the fact that it’s typically considered related to psychological sickness.
“Mystical expertise is an fascinating phenomenon that’s evaluated in psychology in two methods,” say Daiga Katrīna Bitēna and Kristīne Mārtinsone, psychologists at Rīga Stradiņš College in Latvia and the lead authors of the analysis. “Some authors level to its pathological nature whereas others level to its religious part.”
To raised perceive this phenomenon, the researchers explored a number of hypotheses concerning the relationships between mystical expertise, religious intelligence, schizotypal character traits, and psychotic signs in a pattern of 299 Latvian girls.
The researchers evaluated the outcomes primarily based on the info collected utilizing 4 self-report questionnaires: the Mysticism Scale, the Religious Intelligence Survey, the Latvian Scientific Persona Stock, and demographic info.
The outcomes confirmed that mystical experiences are extra strongly related with religious intelligence, which the authors view as a optimistic psychological high quality, than with schizotypal character traits and psychotic signs that characterize psychological pathology.
The authors notice that there’s nonetheless a risk that mystical experiences may very well be associated to schizotypal character traits and psychotic signs.
“Probably the most sensible recommendation for an individual who has skilled a mystical expertise is, no less than initially, to permit for each potentialities — that it could be a part of religious growth or that it could be a symptom of pathology,” say the authors.
Psychological well being professionals, based on the authors, should fastidiously look at the signs of the particular person earlier than coming to any conclusion.
“If we discuss concerning the exterior manifestations of the magical expertise, then it must be famous that the magical expertise is ultimately much like psychosis, which is an episode associated to an sickness wherein an individual is confused about what’s actual and what’s not,” they clarify. “Additionally, in the course of the mystical expertise, the particular person’s sense of actuality is modified. For this reason the connection between mystical expertise and psychotic signs is related.”
Nonetheless, the authors notice that it’s typically the case that mystical experiences and transcendent states of consciousness are nothing greater than a pure a part of human religious development — and that it can be crucial that individuals perceive this to allow them to make sense of their expertise and combine it into their on a regular basis life.
“It’s thought that this strategy of integration — which is drastically influenced by peer attitudes, social assist, surroundings, tradition, and elements of character — performs an essential position in whether or not or not a mystical expertise turns into a traditional a part of somebody’s psychological functioning,” they are saying.
The authors additionally notice that mystical experiences can enhance the character dimension often called ‘openness to expertise.’ Additionally they level out that important life occasions can change grownup character dramatically and that individuals typically name mystical experiences probably the most essential occasions of their lives.
A full interview with Daiga Katrīna Bitēna and Kristīne Mārtinsone discussing their new analysis on mystical experiences may be discovered right here: Making sense of mystical experiences