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The Emergence of Emotional Intelligence and Spiritual Sensibility in an Intensive Spiritual Program. Asun Puche & Luis Botella FPCEE Blanquerna Universitat Ramon Llull. Spiritual Sensitivity (2s).
Asun Puche& Luis Botella
Universitat Ramon Llull
The Spiritual Sensitivity (2s) of a person is greater to the extent that his/her patterns of thought, meaning attribution , awareness,and consciousnessallow him/her:
To transcend the obvious and to operate from patterns of post-formal thinking.
To be maximally aware of him/herself, the world and his/her own place in it.
To be maximally aware of the multi-dimensional patterns that mutually link him/herself to the systems that he/she is embedded in.
To recognize the constructed nature of the limits between the self, the world and the others, and consequently, the intrinsic unicity of reality.
To place his/her actions and his/her life in a wider (self-transcendence), deeper (reflexivity), and more meaningful context.
To interact with the world that he/she is part of, by being focused in the here and now.
To be maximally aware of his/her belonging to a global community.
The ability to perceiveemotions, to use
(integrate) emotions to facilitate thinking,
to understand emotions, and to
regulate emotions (Salovey&Mayer).
To clarify the relations between Spiritual Sensibility and Emotional Intelligence through an in-depth qualitative analysis of a first-person narrative of a participant in an intensive spiritual program (the 30-day Ignatian Spiritual Exercises Retreat).
The Ignatian Spiritual Exercises are an intensive
Christian spiritual practice to help people attain
a state of unitive consciousness so as to be
“contemplative in action”.
The narrative analyzed in this case study corresponds to a 33 years old women, Catholic nun, who participated for the first time in the intensive spiritual program.
Spontaneous self-biographic narrative in a diary format that was elaborated by the participant throughout de 30-day duration of the program.
In-depth qualitative analysis by means of a combination of a Grounded Theory Methodology and methods of textual discourse analysis.
The analysis of the self-biographic narrative yielded 73 categories grouped in 6 core categories: (1) Contextual Information, (2) Daily Organization, (3) Reflexive Comments, (4) Experience of the Spiritual Exercises, (5) Synthetic Summary (6) Global Evaluation.
The 73 emergent categories were classified according to the components of the Spiritual Sensitivity (2s) and Emotional Intelligence (EI), and they were distributed thus:
The distribution of the unities and their overlap shows the relation between Spiritual Sensitivity and Emotional Intelligence, and with the Spiritual Exercises.
At least, in the context of the analyzed case study, Emotional Intelligence could be considered a manifestation of Spiritual Sensitivity applied to the field of emotions.
Nevertheless, to extend this conclusion to a more generic context depends on the meaning attributed to the term “spiritual”.
If the spiritual experience is considered as another field of human experience, then the relationship between 2s and EI should not be that of subordination but of hierarchical horizontality.
If the spiritual experience is considered superordinate to the others (i.e. as founded in the full awareness that sustains the experience of all the others) then it is coherent to represent it as hierarchically superior.
“Beyond what we feel, even if it happens in our bodies, in the depths of our selves, there is an invisible presence”.