Spiritual Bypassing: How to Diagnose and Attend to Various Forms of Spiritual Immaturity in Pastoral Work

Keywords: spirituality, growth, maturity, spiritual bypass, defense mechanisms


For centuries, spiritual growth has been one of the major topics in theology. In this context, spiritual guides have attempted to help people discern between true and false paths towards God. Today, we are again witnessing a growing interest in spirituality itself and in finding means to develop the spiritual potential in human life. Because of the increasing number of people venturing into more advanced spiritual practices, spiritual bypass is appearing more frequently. Recently, this topic has become a study subject of the psychology of spirituality and religion. This article presents major findings from this research and discusses their validity for pastoral work.


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