Transpersonal model of personality has been defined by Frager and Fadiman(2005) as development that goes beyond the individual, conventional or personal levels. The study is concerned with analyzing an individual’s highest potential, realization of the intuition process and the understanding of the states of consciousness. According to Walsh and Vaughan the transpersonal model is comprised of four important elements that make up the model. The four dimensions are conditioning, identity, personality and consciousness.
Conditioning is regarded as an important step in the learning process and is defined as the relatively change that is permanent that is as a result of previous and past experiences. Traditional approach to defining personality state that it’s the distinct and unique characters that define how an individual thinks, behave and interact with the environment. Several factors could determine these behavior including biological influences, social cultural influences and history of the individual. Two aspects make up for personality and they include the dynamics and development of personality.
Dynamics refer to the factors that motivate and drive an individual to act in a certain way. Development of personality on the other hand defines how an individual grows and responds to the changes that occur in the environment (Frager and Fadiman 2005).
Identity as defined in the Walsh and Vaughn model refers to what an individual can conform with or identify with. A person could identify with certain thoughts and believes external objects or even identified people and groups. These factors would therefore shape their identity. This identification is what triggers and sets into motion different psychological processes that can an individual a perception of who they really are. Consciousness has been defined as the state of being aware of the external environment and as a result being able to adjust accordingly.
Humanistic model in contrast focuses on self development, growth and responsibilities of the individual. The model focuses on helping people recognize the strength they posses and creativity improving their decision making process.
Psychoneuroimmunology is the scientific study of the mind, body and health of an individual. More specifically it is the study of the psychological processes of the mind and the interaction with the nervous and the immune systems (Frager and Fadiman 2005). The four bodies of holistic health are physical, spiritual, mental and emotional aspects. These elements co-operate and function as one interpenetrating unit. The mind forms the core of these fore aspects of holistic health therefore a healthy mind would only lead to a healthy physical, spiritual, mental and emotional being.
Maslow described plateau experience as a characteristic nature of individuals who had attained the self actualization level. This level was the highest achievement level that takes individuals years of hard work to attain. He described this as state where an individual realizes that the power and ability they posses was actually greater than they had imagined. The plateau experience however lacks the intensity of the peak experience. It is characterized by serenity, a mood of calmness and happiness which is in contrast to the shocking and surprising nature of the peak experience. The peak experiences form the core of an individual religion and beliefs. In this experience life is seen as desirable and the world perceived as a beautiful place but also as evil in itself. Individuals at the peak experience have a personality of being mechanistic, materialistic and rational when it comes to decision making.
Zazen defines a meditative practice that is done to help the body, mind and soul of an individual and maintain a form of serenity that enables one concentrate and gain more insights and enlighten regarding their lives and the surrounding as well.
- Fadiman, J., & Frager, R. (2005). Personality and personal growth. New York: Harper & Row.