"The Spiritual Child: The New Science on Parenting for Health and Lifelong Thriving"

Oct 4, 2016

On this edition of StudioTulsa Medical Monday, we welcome Dr. Lisa Miller, an author and psychologist whose latest book, a bestseller called "The Spiritual Child," is now out in paperback. Dr. Miller -- who wrote an article for Time.com last year based on this book entitled "Why Kids Who Believe in Something Are Happier and Healthier" -- is the Director of Clinical Psychology at Columbia University's Teachers College, and she joins us by phone. As was noted of this book by Publishers Weekly: "National surveys report that while one-fifth of Americans, including a third of adults under age 30, do not identify with any religion, there is a population of those who identify themselves as 'spiritual but not religious.' Many are parents, uncertain about how to help their offspring develop spiritually, which is why Columbia University clinical psychologist Miller provides thoughtful advice on encouraging the quest for meaning and purpose in a child's life. Drawing on over a decade of research, Miller explains that spirituality is a biological trait that can be nurtured into a 'transcendent relationship' -- a sacred connection with a higher power. Addressing a child's first decade in the book's first part, and adolescence in the second, Miller lays out 'Six Spiritual Strengths': a spiritual compass, commitment to family, community, 'spiritual multilingualism,' cognitive empathy, and dream and mystical experiences. She also prescribes a regular routine of 'Seven Right Things,' with simple strategies like speaking, sharing, and connecting. Full of teaching moments, plenty of families' stories, and lots of sage advice, this highly readable volume should prove useful for unaffiliated and observant parents alike."