What is Spiritual Psychology?

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Spiritual Psychology is our healing approach at The Clearing. It is a set of Principles, Basic Skills, and strategies that can profoundly alter one’s life. Building on proven conventional psychology methods, Spiritual Psychology adds a spiritual dimension. This holistic approach helps Participants discover the underlying core issues causing their challenges and enables them to gently and completely resolve them.

Spiritual Psychology Explained

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Spiritual Psychology: Love to the Hurt

 Conventional psychology focuses on three levels – physical, mental, and emotional – for healing. This is like a three-legged chair. It is incomplete and not totally balanced. Spiritual Psychology incorporates the spiritual level, which is the fourth leg of the chair, completing the foundation and restoring true balance.

Level Description Conventional Psychology Spiritual Psychology
Physical What you do
Mental What you think and believe
Emotional What you feel
Spiritual Who you truly are  

Using the skills taught at The Clearing, you will learn how to bring all levels of your life into balance. When balance is achieved, life becomes peaceful, joyful and harmonious. Fundamental healing takes place, and individuals can achieve peace and live their lives to their fullest potential.

Will your life ever become out of balance again? Yes, it will. However, because you have learned to apply these profound skills and strategies, you are now uniquely prepared and empowered to address and resolve each new issue that may arise in your life with grace and ease.


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The Clearing - Spiritual Psychology Review"The Clearing's program was, for me, completely transformative. As this program is not a 12 Step program but, rather, one that utilizes the tools and principles of Spiritual Psychology, I was able to learn how to accept and heal the underlying issues of the depression and anxiety that led me to drink as a way of numbing my pain. The Clearing's program is certainly an intensive one but I found myself completely supported and unconditionally loved by the entire staff ... and all of the wonderful farm animals.

This is a program that will allow you to reclaim your own power. This is a program that will teach you how to truly love yourself and, by extension, realize the true beauty of your life. At The Clearing, you will receive all of the tools that you will ever need to live the life that you imagine for yourself. You will have to wade through all of that muck that you've tamped down for so long to get there but once you do, you will be truly free. You will be empowered. You will be healthy. This is not a clinical program--no white walls, no bed-checks, no chores. You will be treated as an individual and, though you will be held responsible for your actions, you will be trusted as a member of The Clearing community during treatment.

I whole-heartedly recommend the program at The Clearing to anyone who struggles with depression, substance abuse, compulsive disorders, any kind of mental or emotional disturbance, and/or anyone simply looking to learn how to truly live their life to the fullest."

- C.


The Origins of Spiritual Psychology

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Since the beginning of time, humans have been on a natural quest to understand the unknown and have contemplated the spiritual dimension.

Spiritual Psychology is the natural evolution of these contemplations.

Spiritual Psychology Evolution in the Modern Era

Carl Jung, the Swiss psychiatrist who founded analytical psychology, began the thought process that led to Spiritual Psychology as we know it today.

“Spiritual Psychology is the point at which conventional psychology and spirituality intersect.”

Jung was a protégé of Sigmund Freud in the early 20th century, however, as Jung began to develop his work with the “collective unconscious,” he and Freud went their separate ways.

Roberto Assagioli, the founder of a psychological approach known as psychosynthesis, also found Freud’s theories to be limiting. Both Jung and Assogioli recognized that there was a link between psychological symptoms and spirituality.

Freud maintained that humans experience life on three levels: physical, mental and emotional. Jung and Assogioli were pioneers in recognizing a fourth level, the spiritual level.

A wide range of best selling authors contribute to this field including Dr. Wayne Dyer, Carolyn Myss, Joan Borysendko, Gary Zukav, Echart Tolle, Drs. Ron and Mary Hulnick, Juan Miguel Ruiz, John Bradshaw, Louis Hay and many others.

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The Principles of Spiritual Psychology

Orange Squiggly Line Var 2The Principles of Spiritual Psychology provide the building blocks of our Program. Working with each of these Principles at a very deep level supports profound transformation.


“The Principles of Spiritual Psychology are timeless and eternal. They are derived from the wisdom of the ages.”

21 Principles:
  1. We are all Spiritual Beings having a Human Experience.
  2. The nature of the Universe is Love.
  3. Our natural human state is Love.
  4. All of life is for Learning.
  5. An ‘unresolved issue’ is anything that disturbs your peace.
  6. All ‘upset’ points to unresolved issues.
  7. Unresolved issues are not bad, rather opportunities for spiritual growth.
  8. Nothing outside of you causes your disturbances.
  9. You are completely responsible for your experiences in Life.
  10. Physical world reality exists for Spiritual growth.
  11. Spirit meets you at your point of action.
  12. What you believe determines your experience.
  13. Your future is created based on how you respond to current experiences.
  14. The issue isn’t the issue. The real issue is how you are with yourself as you go through the issue.
  15. Healing is the application of Loving to the places inside that hurt.
  16. Every time an individual resolves a single issue, all of humanity moves forward in its evolution.
  17. Spiritual growth is a process, not an event.
  18. Direct Experience is how belief is turned into Knowing.
  19. Judgment is self-condemnation. Self-forgiveness is freedom.
  20. Your human experience on earth is your school. Your primary goal is to accept and master the lessons from this school.
  21. A life filled with Acceptance is a life free of unnecessary emotional suffering.



Spiritual Psychology Basic Skills

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“The issue isn’t the issue. The issue is how you are with yourself as you go through the issue.”

- Dr. Mary Hulnick
University of Santa Monica

Core to our work and healing are methods and techniques called Basic Skills. Basic Skills are specific methods a counselor uses to create a safe, intimate and healing environment in which Participants work through issues and problems. 

These skills include:

  • Seeing the Loving Essence
    • Seeing the ‘loving heart’ or ‘soul’ in another person.
  • Heart Center Listening
    • Listening to another person without judgment, opinion or the desire to view them as ‘flawed’ or ‘needing to be fixed.’
  • Asking Open-Ended Questions
    • This is a method of asking questions in a manner which does not result in a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer. This technique encourages an unlimited deepening of communication as issues are fully and thoughtfully explored.
  • Conscious Sharing
    • Conscious sharing is the willingness to speak in complete honesty and authenticity without holding back.
  • Perception Checking
    • Checking perceptions regularly as a conversation progresses eliminates assumptions and misinterpretations. This ensures the conversation is understood with accuracy before moving forward.
  • Expressing Feelings
    • Gently encouraging another to experience and express their feelings is an opportunity for deep emotions to be shared and emotional healing to begin.
  • Three Steps to Issue Resolution
    • Set a clear, positive intention to heal
    • Identify and Process the Issue
    • Experience Self Forgiveness
  • Prizing
    • Prizing is the technique of genuinely praising, affirming, and appreciating each other.
  • Accepting Personal Responsibility
    • The cornerstone of Spiritual Psychology, this Principle requires that we accept full responsibility for our experience. This allows movement away from ‘victim’ language and thinking and into authentic power.
  • Reframing Issues as Blessings
    • This enables the awareness that challenges we face in life have a higher and underlying positive purpose. We learn to appreciate situations that we once viewed as ‘bad’ are in fact opportunities for learning, and come to view these events as gifts which can offer great benefit to our lives and advancement of the soul.
  • Silence
    • Silence allows us the opportunity to access deeper levels within ourselves. We are able reflect on what we just said without interruption, allowing the opportunity to experience a deeper level of communication with ourselves.
  • Identifying, Owning and Accepting Projections
    • This is an effective reminder that we may have a similar issue requiring more attention within ourselves when the actions of another person are upsetting.
  • Positive Self Talk
    • This is the rewiring of our automatic negative thought patterns. Unaddressed, the average human will experience thousands of negative thoughts each day.



Spiritual Psychology Counseling Strategies

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Counseling Strategies are methods that a counselor uses to facilitate a Participant in uncovering and healing core issues.   The main strategies used in our Program include:

  • Object Relations
    • Mental upset as seen as the result of childhood wounds. Object Relations therapy is targeted on healing this wounded material through the therapist-to-client bond. In our Program we take this a step further in teaching Participants to create an adult-to-child bond within themselves.
  • Reality Therapy (Behavioral Therapy)
    • Mental illness is seen as resulting in faulty behavioral patterns. The goal is creating a more functional plan of action and adhering to or adjusting this plan.
  • Gestalt Therapy
    • Mental upset is seen as resulting from traumatic experiences from our past. If these experiences are not “worked through,” it creates within the mind “unfinished business.”  Participants work on completion” of this business.
  • Psychosynthesis
    • Mental upset is seen as people living in the past or in the future – away from their loving center.  Participants work on living in the “here and now.”
  • Person-Centered Therapy
    • When people feel listened to, respected and loved, they are able to tap into their own innate resources to heal.
  • Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP)
    • Within each of us resides many aspects of our personality.  Sometimes these aspects can be in conflict with each other or an aspect may be found to be the cause of a certain type of behavior or reaction.  NLP allows one to work with these aspects to heal or modify the behavior, conflict or reaction.
  • Core Transformation
    • This is a process allowing one to systematically and authentically step up from any emotional state to a Core State of Love, Peace or Oneness.  When a person is in a Core State, healing an emotional issue can be done by observing the issue from that Core State and releasing it.
  • Family Systems
    • This is a process of examining hereditary and multi-generational limiting patterns.  Participants gain an understanding of the family dynamics that are alive within them.  This awareness leads to issue identification, understanding and acceptance with the goal of becoming one’s own individual.
  • Developmental Psychology
    • The understanding that human development progresses in predictable age stages.  Mental disturbance occurs when there is a trauma during one of these stages.
  • Self Counseling
    • The process of using any or all of the strategies listed above on ones self. Participants learn to become their own counselor.


List adapted from the work of Drs. Ron and Mary Hulnick, the founding faculty and co-directors of the University of Santa Monica and their book, Loyalty to Your Soul, and taught at the University of Santa Monica.


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