Year : 2015  |  Volume : 57  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 21--29

Theory and practice of chaplain俟Q製 spiritual care process: A psychiatrist俟Q製 experiences of chaplaincy and conceptualizing trans-personal model of mindfulness


Ramakrishnan Parameshwaran 
 Harvard Divinity School, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA, Adibhat Foundation for Integrating Medicine and Spirituality, Greater Kailash-I, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Ramakrishnan Parameshwaran
Center for Study of World Religions, 42 Francis Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA

Background: Of various spiritual care methods, mindfulness meditation has found consistent application in clinical intervention and research. 非Q腿istening presence,非Q a chaplain俟Q製 model of mindfulness and its trans-personal application in spiritual care is least understood and studied. Aim: The aim was to develop a conceptualized understanding of chaplain俟Q製 spiritual care process based on neuro-physiological principles of mindfulness and interpersonal empathy. Materials and Methods: Current understandings on neuro-physiological mechanisms of mindfulness-based interventions (MBI) and interpersonal empathy such as theory of mind and mirror neuron system are used to build a theoretical framework for chaplain俟Q製 spiritual care process. Practical application of this theoretical model is illustrated using a carefully recorded clinical interaction, in verbatim, between chaplain and his patient. Qualitative findings from this verbatim are systematically analyzed using neuro-physiological principles. Results and Discussion: Chaplain俟Q製 deep listening skills to experience patient俟Q製 pain and suffering, awareness of his emotions/memories triggered by patient俟Q製 story and ability to set aside personal emotions, and judgmental thoughts formed intra-personal mindfulness. Chaplain俟Q製 insights on and ability to remain mindfully aware of possible emotions/thoughts in the patient, and facilitating patient to return and re-return to become aware of internal emotions/thoughts helps the patient develop own intra-personal mindfulness leading to self-healing. This form of care involving chaplain俟Q製 mindfulness of emotions/thoughts of another individual, that is, patient, may be conceptualized as trans-personal model of MBI. Conclusion: Chaplain俟Q製 approach may be a legitimate form of psychological therapy that includes inter and intra-personal mindfulness. Neuro-physiological mechanisms of empathy that underlie Chaplain俟Q製 spiritual care process may establish it as an evidence-based clinical method of care.


How to cite this article:
Parameshwaran R. Theory and practice of chaplain's spiritual care process: A psychiatrist's experiences of chaplaincy and conceptualizing trans-personal model of mindfulness.Indian J Psychiatry 2015;57:21-29


How to cite this URL:
Parameshwaran R. Theory and practice of chaplain's spiritual care process: A psychiatrist's experiences of chaplaincy and conceptualizing trans-personal model of mindfulness. Indian J Psychiatry [serial online] 2015 [cited 2020 Jul 4 ];57:21-29
Available from: http://www.indianjpsychiatry.org/article.asp?issn=0019-5545;year=2015;volume=57;issue=1;spage=21;epage=29;aulast=Parameshwaran;type=0