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Psychology of Religion - The Self Compass®


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PSYCHOLOGY OF RELIGION AND COMPASS PSYCHOTHEOLOGY

 

The world religions offer perspectives on God, the human condition, and how to lead a fulfilling life. Now from within the Christian faith comes a paradigm that combines Trinitarian orthodoxy with health psychology, providing a psychotheology for the 21st century.

Dr. Dan and Kate Montgomery’s Compass Psychotheology offers explanatory principles that are biblically grounded in Judeo-Christian Scripture, yet contribute to a psychology of religion that supports the pursuit of psychological and spiritual wholeness.

Compass Psychotheology suggests an interpersonal approach to the psychology of religion which states that every person is created in the image of God, complete with the capacity to develop existential intimacy with God, caring bonds with others, and a meaningful sense of identity. And further, that the Trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) is the ontological ground of human persons and the inspired impetus for growing more Christlike in a person's own original way.


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The above paradigm is expanded upon in the Montgomery’s book Compass Psychotheology: Where Psychology and Theology Really Meet, and illustrates both the ontology of persons and the existential intimacy possible between God and every human being.

God desires people to participate in communion with the Trinity and others. People are fulfilled to the extent that they do. This notion of God’s one-on-one participation in intimate dialogue with individuals presupposes that God is not only an immutable essence, but also a personal being whose nature defines the meaning of personhood.

Thus the key to people’s fulfillment lies in freely choosing a relationship of existential intimacy with God. God’s “I AM” on the left side of the equation is always reaching out to a person's “i am” on the right side of the equation. Responding to God activates a back-and-forth sharing process in which God indwells the person (The I AM inside the i am) and the person is grounded in God’s eternal being and personality (The i am inside the I AM).

Like human interpersonal relationships, the “I AM — i am” encounter with God requires emotional risks, heartfelt communication, and trust from the human side, and love and grace from God’s side.

There is a place in the history of philosophy for this paradigm. University of Oklahoma philosophy professor, Helen Wilson, writes: “Like Martin Buber’s conception of ‘I and Thou,’ the Montgomery development of the ‘I AM—i am’ paradigm is an original idea in the history of Western Philosophy.”


BOOKS ILLUMINATING CHRISTIAN PSYCHOLOGY OF RELIGION

 

These books present a Christian psychology of religion from the perspective of Compass Psychotheology and may be ordered by clicking on a book's title:

CHRISTIAN PERSONALITY THEORY: A SELF COMPASS FOR HUMANITY

“This book provides an excellent example of the integration of psychology and religion from a Christian perspective and I for one will recommend it to colleagues and clients alike.”

Thomas G. Plante, Ph.D., ABPP, Professor of Psychology, Santa Clara University

TRUSTING IN THE TRINITY: COMPASS PSYCHOTHEOLOGY APPLIED

Trusting In The Trinity offers a bridge-building effort to bring together the concerns of modern psychotherapy and the historic Trinitarian faith: deserves critical examination.”

Donald G. Bloesch, Ph.D., Professor of Theology Emeritus, University of Dubuque Theological Seminary

COMPASS PSYCHOTHEOLOGY: WHERE PSYCHOLOGY & THEOLOGY REALLY MEET

“This is a stunning contribution to the literature on the integration of psychology and theology. I recommend it as required reading here at Fuller Seminary.”

Ray S. Anderson, Ph.D., Senior Professor of Theology & Ministry, Fuller Theological Seminary

THE SELF COMPASS: CHARTING YOUR PERSONALITY IN CHRIST

“Dan Montgomery’s Christian personality theory is innovative and biblically sound.”

Gordon D. Fee, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of New Testament Studies, Regent College


COMPASS SERIES BOOKS VIDEO

 

Dan Montgomery describes the complete Compass Series, including a Christian fiction novel: VIDEO.

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