Unpublished Book Chapter by David Burns: Practical Spirituality

David Burns authored the excellent 1980 book Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy, which he followed up with The Feeling Good Handbook (1989) and Feeling Good Together (2008), among many others.

Burns recently posted a “lost chapter” from Feeling Good Together to his blog. He attributes the chapter’s exclusion to “tension between my own thinking and the ideas of the publishers and editor. Book publishers have the belief that shorter is always better, so they cut cut cut. Often they are right, but not always.” The chapter was to be entitled “Practical Spirituality” or “Psychotherapy and Spirituality”.

Burns describes his perspective: “I’m not referring to any particular religion, but rather to the spiritual concepts that are at the core of nearly every religion. I’m convinced that personal and spiritual values play a vitally important role in our lives, and it makes no difference whether you’re Christian, Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist, Islamic, or even an atheist.”

The chapter posted online makes reference to ideas from other chapters in Feeling Good Together, and the examples follow that book’s theme of healing troubled longterm relationships. Nonetheless, the spirituality chapter stands on its own and is well worth reading.

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Also see: David Burns articles, talks, interviews on fighting depression.

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