This website is dedicated to talking about the intersection of Christianity and mental health. Our hope is in identifying how the Church can go to serve those with mental illness as well as their families and clinical counselors can integrate Christian theology and practice into the counseling session with their clients. The book Anatomy of the Soul by Curt Thompson may be a bit more niche as he looks at the intersection of neuroscience and faith.
In all reality, a bio-psycho-social-spiritual model looks at how faith, mental health, social supports, and neurobiology all integrate. Curt Thompson’s discussion hits this powerfully, though he does not directly reference this model, bringing in mental health therapy models, Scripture, the need for social support, and what is happening neurologically to create healthy, new brain patterns at birth all the way to old age. Maybe the best quote that highlights this is:
Being known. Our Western world has long emphasized knowledge—factual information and “proof”—over the process of being known by God and others. No wonder, then, that despite all our technological advancements and the proliferation of social media, we are more intra- and interpersonal isolated than ever. Yet it is only when we are known that we are positioned to become conduits of love. And it is love that transforms our minds, makes forgiveness possible, and weaves a community of disparate people into the tapestry of God’s family.Anatomy of the Soul, page 3
This is not the type of book that you want to read as a casual listen. I like to call books such as this thick as you need to be fully attentive to make all the connections. Even an Audible listener like myself may have a difficult time driving or mowing and catching all of the nuances.
For some that the medical model is not something they see within mental health, this may be difficult to read. I fully support the family and relationships as a key part of how we make these changes, but again, the bio-psycho-social-spiritual model would say that a component of this is medical. Neuroscience, medication, and brain pathways are all a part of this, and therapy models such as Attachment Theory dive deep into this.
I will also say that Curt Thompson is prolific online with a website linked above and YouTube. Here is one of his initial videos of what dose Anatomy of the Soul means:
We loved this book and give it a 5 out of 5 stars. A must-read for Christian counselors out there.