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Bergon, E. (1966). Religions, Values, and Peak-Experiences. B Abraham H. Maslow, 123 pp. The Kappa Delta Pi Publications. $ 2.50.. Am. J. Psychoanal., 26(2):215-215.

(1966). American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 26(2):215-215

Religions, Values, and Peak-Experiences. B Abraham H. Maslow, 123 pp. The Kappa Delta Pi Publications. $ 2.50.

Review by:
Enrique Bergon, M.D.

“This volume,” explains the author, “springs from the belief, first that the ultimate disease of our time is valuelessness; second, that this state is more crucially dangerous than ever before in history; and finally, that something can be done about it by man's own rational efforts.” Maslow warns psychoanalysts, as Horney did, of the unsoundness of the view that an analyst should be devoid of values in his therapeutic efforts. Referring to Freud's tendency to put aside any consideration of values, he blames the nineteenth-century interpretation of what should be the concern of science.

He stresses the fact that values must not be regarded as a monopoly of churches. He insists that organized religions have remained too dogmatic; that by believing they have the whole and permanent truth, they have failed to consider the data provided by modern science and modern realities. Maslow asserts that we need an expanded science, with larger powers and methods, one able to study values and to include the data of transcendence.

He tries to revitalize such concepts as ecstasy, rapture, vision, etc., which in the past were regarded as supernatural phenomena. He believes, however, that the potentiality for having these experiences is rooted in human nature. Terming them “peak-experiences,” he regards them as the same experiences which in the past were called “mystic experiences.” They were considered such by people who, puzzled by their unusual

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