chapter  10
17 Pages

Spirituality and spiritual development

ByEd Pawson

This chapter reviews some of the research which has been carried out into the spiritual experiences of young people and suggests a range of suitable activities to enable them to enhance their level of spiritual development. It investigates the relationship between spirituality and religion and explores the connections between spiritual development and psychological growth. The National Curriculum Council (NCC) refers to spirituality as 'applying to something fundamental in the human condition', but which cannot be experienced through the physical senses or expressed through everyday language. For John Hull, spirituality is about transcendence – the ability to reach beyond the material realm and glimpse a deeper reality. The contemporary Western view of religion and spirituality has tended to be influenced by thinkers such as Marx and Freud who have cast religious beliefs in a negative light, as a form of mental aberration. Working with David Hay, Rebecca Nye defines children's spirituality as 'relational consciousness'.