Spiritual Formation

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In this research paper, I will try to illustrate my hypothesis of spiritual formation throughout the lifespan by using my interpretation of a collection of theories. The theories I will refer to include Piaget’s Cognitive Development Theory, Erikson’s Psychosocial Theory, and Kohlberg’s Development of Moral Reasoning Theory. In Piaget’s Theory of Cognitive Development, he develops a theory of cognitive development that occurs in stages from persons under two years of age through age 14. Piaget’s theory relates to the cognitive development of a human person. In Erik Erickson's Theory of Psychosocial Development, Erikson describes a theory consisting of eight stages of psychosocial development. This is in regard to personality development and the impact of external factors to that development. Lawrence Kohlberg sums up his theory with several distinct stages of development regarding moral reasoning. He presents moral dilemmas to persons, and observes how a person talks about those dilemmas. I will try to correlate my thoughts on spiritual formation throughout the life span to these theories as I use these authors’ models of mature thought, moral and cognitive development.

Keywords: cognitive, psychosocial, centration

* According to Jean Piaget, there is a sequence of maturational thinking. Piaget proposes that a child will respond to external forces in order to formulate abstract thinking of that concept. This is the beginning of a life cycle of changes in a person’s thinking and eventually a comprehensive cause and effect thinking begets more thinking leading to further maturation within a person. Using his model of cognitive development, I will illustrate one’s maturation through the lifecycle of spiritual formation. Using Piaget’s theory and relating it to the spiritual formation of a person through the lifecycle I will illustrate my...
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