Prayer and affirmations can be spiritual and/or religious in nature and are often associated with successful coping, recovery, and optimism. As counselors learn to integrate the client’s faith practices more fully within their counseling interventions, prayer and affirmations to a higher power have emerged as techniques that can be highly effective if incorporated appropriately.

Historical Context

Counseling theory has been neutral toward religion over the years. For instance, Sigmund Freud (1856–1939) suggested that religion hides the reality of life, and the cognitive therapist Albert Ellis (1913–2007) suggested that religion often was the source of the development of dogmatic thinking. Because a number of major theorists viewed religion in this negative context, counseling has traditionally held a predominately secular orientation, with spiritual and religious concerns often seen as ...

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