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Successful Beginning of the Course in Mysticism and Psychiatry Co-organized by the Fernando Rielo Foundation and the UIMP Valencia, Spain

By 20 September, 2017January 2nd, 2023No Comments
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The course “Mysticism and Psychiatry” organized by the Fernando Rielo Foundation and Menéndez Pelayo International University was held from 18 to 20 September in Valencia. It was the fourth time the FFR had organized a seminar in that university.

This course addressed the various aspects involved in the relationship between mysticism and psychiatry, ranging from the contribution of Fernando Rielo’s psycho-ethics, the theory of mindfulness, the association of spirituality and psychology, the relationship between Saint John of the Cross and his influence in psychopathology, the therapies of the spirit, the religious fact, and the relationship between neurosis and conscience from the perspective of Fernando Rielo.

All this was dealt with by such experts as the President of the Fernando Rielo Foundation, Jesús Fernández Hernández; the head of the Philosophy Department of the FFR and Professor at the UAM university, Juana Sánchez Gey; the psychiatrist and Professor at the university Abat Oliba CEU, Mar Álvarez Segura; the oncologist and President of the V. Frankl Foundation, José Luis Guinot; the psychologist and professor at the university Abat Oliba CEU, Martín F. Echavarría; the Dean of the Faculty of Theology San Vicente Ferrer, Vicente Botella; and the President of the Idente School, José María López Sevillano, among others.

In the opening session, Jesús Fernández Hernández stated that “we must speak of physical, psychical and spiritual diseases, but with a “look from above”; that is, from an absolute model, well-formed and constitutively present in the spirit.” This is why we must go beyond the organicist and materialist reductionism of Freudian psychoanalysis, for, he went on to say, “Freud did not realize that all the frustration of human being proceeds, in the opinion of Fernando Rielo, from the “egotical” tendency of the spirit, which can only be cured with the genetic heritage that defines it.”

In her presentation, Juana Sánchez-Gey spoke of psycho-ethics as enhancing the integrating health of the person, whereas Mar Álvarez spoke of the confusion that occurs today between mindfulness and contemplative prayer, in a world of overstimulation and narcissism in which the individual is a stranger to himself. The first day ended with the round table “Spirituality and Psychology”, in which several young researchers from the University Abat Oliba-CEU addressed the issue by applying it to domestic violence, immigration and deprivation of liberty, using the contribution, among others, of the Fathers of the desert, Christian hospitality and Viktor Frankl’s logotherapy.