What is a psychospiritual crisis?

The psychospiritual crisis is a transformative process with healing potential, which may have an external form of psychosis but should not be confused with psychosis as a mental disorder. The use of adequate therapeutic methods can help people in psychospiritual crises to promote greater personality integration and fuller health. One of the basic messages of this set of symptoms is that under certain circumstances it is normal to have “abnormal” experiences. Despite its turbulent and unusual manifestations, the psychospiritual crisis is a stage in the individual's personal development, which has the potential to trigger positive change and, through sensitive and professional guidance, leads to better personality integration.

Definition of psychospiritual crisis

Psychospiritual crisis in general

The psychospiritual crisis is still a new concept in the field of mental health. It is not included as a diagnostic unit in the ICD-10 (International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems 10th revision) diagnostic manual, which is mandatory for Europe. Our reframing into "a set of symptoms that occur across the spectrum of psychiatric diagnoses, including its pure form", makes this diagnostic category closer to reality and thus more acceptable to the professional community.

It is a difficult period in the life of an individual, manifested by episodes of unusual experiences that involve changes in consciousness, perception, emotion, and thought. In these experiences, there is a marked overlap of the previously usual boundaries of experiencing oneself with frequent occurrence of transpersonal (beyond the normal boundaries of self-perception) or spiritual experiences. A psychospiritual crisis occurs when the intensity of the experience is too much for the inner space for the emotions of the experiencing person. It is influenced by the power of the starter, and also by the history of the individual. According to Grof's original nomenclature, we recognize spiritual emergence - spiritual experiences or spiritual emergency - when the situation is perceived as a crisis. The original English terms emergence or emergency are based on the Latin emergere - "emerging to the surface", "emerging", or "going forward". Spiritual experiences are often enough to re-frame as a "normal" manifestation. The crisis requires deeper psychotherapeutic support because the course and manifestations are too intense for an individual and they cease to manage their experiences in parallel with the current functioning.

Psychospiritual crisis contains:

1. Unusual experiences like

2. Ability to reflect + ex-post positive evaluation

3. Reliving experience as an internal process

4. Historical context-personal development before the crisis, trigger, acute start, etc.

5. Capacity for cooperation

6. Low risk of dangerous or suicidal behavior

7. Ability to integrate into aftercare

8. So-called "higher health" as a result

What triggers the psychospiritual crisis?

Who is affected by the psychospiritual crisis?

What happens in a psychospiritual crisis?

The psychospiritual crisis can take the form of psychosis

Psychospiritual crisis or psychosis?

Treatment of psychospiritual crisis

At the beginning, it is necessary to pay attention to differential diagnosis (see above).

Regarding the psychospiritual crisis, the professional psychotherapeutic accompaniment will support the transformative and self-healing potential of this experience and the associated internal processes that have not been completed in the individual's history. Therapeutic methods vary according to the approach of individual therapists in the Diabasis network. Our goal is that a therapeutically managed psychospiritual crisis should lead to greater personality integration, "higher health". We recognize psychospiritual crisis symptoms with psychotic manifestations and psychosis with psychospiritual symptoms. Distinguishing is difficult, but important for choosing the ideal therapeutic approach. We do not exclude conscious pharmacotherapy. We strive to use all possibilities of the therapeutic accompaniment of the patient, including pharmacotherapy, to achieve integration of experience as part of their personality development.

We seek to prove the hypothesis that the therapeutic treatment of this set of symptoms is an important factor in a good prognosis.