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Spirituality Potential Key to Suicide Prevention

Spirituality Potential Key to Suicide Prevention

Australian health professionals are turning to spirituality with the failure of current approaches to cut the youth suicide rate. Melbourne-based David Tacey, who is visiting Wellington's St Andrew’s on The Terrace from June 6 to 15 says that, while that’s surprising, it’s a lack of meaning or a lack of spirituality that can contribute to a sense of life not worthy to be lived.

“This provokes the urge to self destruction. It’s very interesting that in areas of desperation spirituality often emerges as almost the only ray of hope.”

Tacey, who has addressed confereces on suicide prevention, believes that the secular world is “running on empty” and represses spiritual impulses which, for young people, can provide the language they need to express their hopes and dreams. “Growing up is about identifying and educating our aspirations. Without them life us pretty dull and drab.”

“My belief is that there is a spiritual dimension in each one of us”, he says. “I am personally aware of interest in spirituality in dozens of areas of human concern, from healthcare to physical education, architecture to business management. It seems to me that we are in the midst of a spirituality revolution as virtually every traditional discipline struggles to come to terms with postmodern interest in spiritual matters.”

David Tacey, who is the 2006 Geering Lecturer, will be presenting a series entitled “The Spirituality Revolution” at St Andrews on the Terrace beginning this week.

Tuesday 6 June, 12:15 pm
Spirituality and Religion:
The Contemporary Situation

Thursday 8 June, 12:15 pm
What is Spirituality?

Tuesday 13 June, 12:15 pm
Youth Spirituality and the Question of Faith

Thursday 15 June, 12:15 pm
Religion's Recovery of Interiority
Cost $25. Registration form available from the St Andrew’s Off

Workshop at Crossways Exploring the Spiritual Life - Saturday 10 June, 9 am to 12:30 pm
Cost $25. Registration form available from the St Andrew’s Office

Preaching at St Andrew’s on Sunday 11 June, 10 am
on the topic “What is Religion For in Secular Times?”

David Tacey is the author of eight books and numerous articles on psychology, literary and cultural studies, continental philosophy, sociology of religion, theology and religious studies. His research explores the emergence of spiritual themes and meaning-making in philosophy, literature, youth experience, educational theory, and the experience of nature and environment.

Dr David Tacey is Associate Professor and Reader in Arts and Communication at La Trobe University, Melbourne.


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