Encyclopedia of Psychology and Religion

2014 Edition
| Editors: David A. Leeming

Faith Healing

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-6086-2_9160

Faith healing refers to processes of restoration of well-being through religious rituals and submission to divine intervention. It involves the conviction that mystical power can remedy mental and physical affliction either through material medicines or without them. Private or communal rituals and devotion intended to influence supernatural beings to miraculously counteract affliction are key features of faith healing. However, the afflicted may or may not actively solicit the mystical healing as their faith makes them take for granted the solicitude of God or other divine beings. Believers may expect divine beings to reciprocate people’s trust, faith, and obedience with compassion and well-being. Similarly, human agents such as doctors or faith healers may not necessarily mediate the healing process (Dickinson 1995, p. 97). Faith healing is therefore a type of religious, magical, or symbolic healing resulting from direct or indirect ritual manipulation of supernatural forces (cf....

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Social Sciences; Anthropology UnitThe Catholic University of Eastern AfricaNairobiKenya