School of Behavioral Sciences
Doctor of Philosophy in Counselor Education and Supervision (PhD)
Mindfulness, Meditation, Depression, Clinical, Spiritual, Phenomenological
Cognitive Psychology | Counseling | Psychology
Bellingham, Grace Lynn, "Spiritually Focused Mindfulness Meditation: An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis of the Effect of Spiritually Focused Mindfulness Meditation on Depression with a Clinical Population" (2019). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 2006.
This interpretative phenomenological analysis explored the use of spiritually focused mindfulness meditation for clinical depression. Although antidepressant medication and cognitive behavioral therapy are the leading evidence-based treatments for clinical depression, major depressive disorder is recurrent, and progressive and relapse rates are increasing. Numerous studies examining the use of complementary and alternative medicine therapies, which include the use of meditation to treat depression, have emerged in the literature. In this study, three individuals who met diagnostic criteria for major depressive disorder used spiritually focused mindfulness meditation for three weeks and participated in in-depth interviews to explore their experiences. Findings revealed significant improvement in the biological, psychological, social, and spiritual symptoms of clinical depression. Findings also supported the importance and value of clinicians including consideration of spiritual beliefs as part of the intake process and gave support for the use of spiritually focused mindfulness meditation to improve treatment outcomes for depression. Considering that biological, psychological, social, and spiritual impairments coinciding with depression often persist following treatment and increase risk of relapse, the capacity of spiritually focused mindfulness meditation to positively affect these changes would provide important meditation-based treatment and prevention.