Humanistic Psychology Essay

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Throughout history many individuals and groups have affirmed the inherent value and dignity of human beings. They have spoken out against ideologies, beliefs and practices, which held people to be merely the means for accomplishing economic and political ends. They have reminded their contemporaries that the purpose of institutions is to serve and advance the freedom and power of their members. In Western civilization we honor the times and places, such as Classical Greece and Europe of the Renaissance, when such affirmations were expressed.
Humanistic Psychology is a contemporary manifestation of that ongoing commitment. Its message is a response to the denigration of the human spirit that has so often been implied in the
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Clearly, societies both help and hinder human growth. Because nourishing environments can make an important contribution to the development of healthy personalities, human needs should be given priority when fashioning social policies. This becomes increasingly critical in a rapidly changing world threatened by such dangers as nuclear war, overpopulation and the breakdown of traditional social structures.
Many humanistic psychologists stress the importance of social change, the challenge of modifying old institutions and inventing new ones able to sustain both human development and organizational efficacy. Thus the humanistic emphasis on individual freedom should be matched by recognition of our interdependence and our responsibilities to one another, to society and culture, and to the future.

Methods of Inquiry:
All of these special concerns point toward the need for a more complete knowledge of the quality of human experience. Humanistic psychology is best known as a body of theory and systems of psychotherapy, but it is also an approach to scholarship and research, to inquiry informed by a strong sense of purpose. The purpose is to provide a level of understanding that can promote the power of personal choice and the care and effectiveness of social groups.
Humanistic psychology recognizes that human existence consists of multiple layers of reality: the physical, the organic and the symbolic. In considering these components it
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