To heal with words: a study of paradox and preaching
Kathy Fuson Hurt
The thesis explores the ways in which paradoxical communication is used by mystical teachers and gurus, and by communication-oriented psychotherapists (Paul Watzlawick, Gregory Bateson, Milton H Erickson, et al). In both contexts, that of mysticism and that of psychotherapy, paradoxes are set up in such a fashion that significant life change becomes possible for the mystical seeker/therapy client. The process of change that is initiated by paradoxes is described using the models of the respective fields. The thesis then moves to consider the preaching task in the light of these findings, arguing that sermons might also use paradoxical communication as a means of facilitating important change, even salvation, in the lives of congregation members.
Degree Granting Institution