Keepers of the Flame

Trauma and Healing in Religion

Nathan Smith
Interfaith Now

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Photo by Jan Canty on Unsplash

I was raised a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, separated from the LDS Church due in part to traumatic experiences as a missionary, and currently find myself something of a “none” as far as demographics are concerned. Despite the fact that I do not align myself with any particular religious institution or community, and I would likely pass for an atheist upon outward observation, I find myself slipping into spirituality more often than I even realize. Relatedly, in the near future I’ll be beginning a graduate program to become a Marriage and Family Therapist. Both psychology and psychotherapy have been immensely important to me personally, even before I had terms to describe them. To the surprise of some, despite having separated from the religion in which I was raised, I do not see religion itself as pathological. In fact, psychology and psychotherapy (and adjacent fields, like neuroscience) have helped me maintain a deep appreciation for the “numinous” qualities of human experience, even through my own spiritual transitions.

Jung, Freud, and the Religious Impulse

Carl Jung often lamented that in our largely post-Christian era, we have outgrown the religion of previous centuries without learning our lesson. Granting that religion is a human artifact…

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Nathan Smith
Interfaith Now

Writer, therapy student, queer; interested in psychology, philosophy, literature, religion/spirituality. YouTube.com/@MindMakesThisWorld @NateSmithSNF