Religio-Cultural Alternatives to Treatment for Mental Health Problems

Date

2018-02-19

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Conference

Peer reviewed

Abstract

Mental illness has long been associated with ‘external evil forces’ in numerous cultural and religious belief systems. Such frameworks suggest that both mental illness and personality disorders are due to a variety of causes including sinfulness, evil eye/jealousy, curses or the possession of the individual by demons/jinns (Hillier & Jewell, 1983; Rashid et al, 2012). Owing to their religio-cultural belief systems many choose to seek spiritual advice or ‘interventions’ from traditional faith/spiritual healers for psychiatric problems, either as a “first port of call” (Leavey, 2008 as cited in Rashid et al 2012:654) or as the sole treatment. Choice of treatment is both a reflection of people’s views of mental illness/ill health and of what is available to them (Sembhi & Dein, 1998). So this paper seeks to explore the motivations, expectations and perceived efficacy of ‘spiritual interventions’ from the perspective of those that seek such help.

Description

Keywords

Transcultural Psychiatry, Mental Illness, Spiritual Interventions

Citation

Sadique, K. (2018) Religio-Cultural Alternatives to ‘Treatment’ for Mental Health conditions. Royal College of Psychiatrists Transcultural SIG Annual Conference, 19 Feb 2018, Royal College of Psychiatry, London

Rights

Research Institute

Institute for Research in Criminology, Community, Education and Social Justice