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Humanistic Psychology / Humanistic Therapies

Humanistic psychology grew in the mid-20th century at a time when psychoanalytic and behavior theory were prominent. Humanistic psychology emphasizes the inherent goodness in people, and their inherent drive toward realizing and expressing their own capabilities (self-actualization). The perspective of humanistic psychology has been summed up in five ‘postulates’ (Bugental, 1964):
  1. Human beings, as human, supersede the sum of their parts. They cannot be reduced to components.
  2. Human beings have their existence in a uniquely human context, as well as in a cosmic ecology.
  3. Human beings are aware and aware of being aware—i.e., they are conscious. Human consciousness always includes an awareness of oneself in the context of other people.
  4. Human beings have some choice and, with that, responsibility.
  5. Human beings are intentional, aim at goals, are aware that they cause future events, and seek meaning, value, and creativity.
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