Well-being is an important topic for many different professions. From health professionals to politicians, a number of fields seek to research, understand and promote wellbeing. As a concept at the heart of psychotherapeutic practice, it is essential that trainee and practising therapists understand the distinctive contribution to our understanding of well-being that each of these professions have made. In this unique text, author Digby Tantam explores the philosophical, political, economical, psychological, medical and spiritual perspectives on well-being through a psychotherapeutic lens, explaining current research data and summarising findings. Theoretical approaches are balanced with an insight into their practical applications, showing therapists how each approach can inform their practice and make a real difference to the life satisfaction and health of their clients.

The Spiritual Viewpoint

The Spiritual Viewpoint

In the last chapter, I considered the limitations of well-being as an explanation of what makes life worthwhile. Some of this shortfall is taken up by the additional scope of the term ‘living well’. Living well for most people requires other people and not just oneself to be taken into account. Connectedness to others emerged in the last chapter as an important mediating factor between extraversion, what I called well-being capital, and well-being itself. Durkheim (2008) argued that social connectedness is fundamental to religion, too, and Augustine of Hippo (Augustine, 2009) attributed the derivation of the word ‘religio’ to the Latin word, ligare, to bind, implying that religion binds people together (the etymology is, however, disputed).

Religion is grounded in ...

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