DSM-IV Religious and Spiritual Problems

A coursebook by David Lukoff, Ph.D.

A new diagnostic category called “Religious or Spiritual Problem” was introduced in the DSM-IV (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association) in 1994.

For the first time, there is acknowledgment of distressing religious and spiritual experiences as nonpathological problems.

Co-author of the new category, David Lukoff, Ph.D., has prepared a coursebook (presented here) designed to teach mental health professionals about the process of its acceptance, its definition, various types of religious and spiritual problems, differential diagnosis, and treatment of these problems.

Alien encounters are included in this coursebook because such extraordinary events function for some individuals as transcendent experiences (see section 3.9).

This coursebook is free to view, and is presented here as a .pdf file, in the expectation that the coursebook will be of interest to general readers seeking more information on these subjects.

Click to download the book

Professionals interested in taking this course should visit Internet Guided Learning to ensure that they are downloading the most current edition of this coursebook. If you are a professional interested in taking the online course, the CE Quiz Form and tuition fee information is available at the course’s official website, the Internet Guided Learning website.

Contents of the .pdf file:

Introduction to Course

I Background of DSM-IV Categories

II Religious Problems
Lesson 2.1 Religious Problems
Lesson 2.2 Loss or questioning of faith
Lesson 2.3 Changes in membership, practices and beliefs
Lesson 2.4 New Religious Movements and Cults
Lesson 2.5 Terminal and life-threatening illness

III Spiritual Problems
Lesson 3.1 Spiritual Emergence
Lesson 3.2 Spiritual Problems
Lesson 3.3 Mystical experiences
Lesson 3.4 Near-death experiences
Lesson 3.5 Meditation & Spiritual Practice
Lesson 3.6 Psychic experiences
Lesson 3.7 Visionary Experiences
Lesson 3.8 Shamanic experiences
Lesson 3.9 Alien Encounter Experiences
Lesson 3.10 Possession experiences

IV Co-Ocurrence with Mental Disorders

V Differential Diagnosis

VI Therapeutic Interventions
Lesson 6.1 Spiritual Crises
Lesson 6.2 Psychotherapy

VII Online Resources
Lesson 7.1 Online Resources
Lesson 7.2 Searching Medline

© 2000 David Lukoff
All Rights Reserved.