A person in serious health care need of any kind juggles several significant concerns at any given time, some of them having nothing apparent to do with the health care issue for which s/he is seeking help. These underlying concerns are all importance, ranging from who will pick up Johnny and feed the dog, to how long will I be incapacitated, how much will this hurt, will I die from this, be disfigured or lose my job? Beneath these immediate concerns stew such other ongoing concerns at home as a troubled child, a painful marriage, and the waning well-being of a parent or partner. The most common of these can be seen as taking place in 36 Primary Spiritual Arenas of the human soul. 


It is a fascinating eventuality that the greatest moments of life, the delight, the fulfilling successes, the crowning achievements and the quiet enjoyments emanate from the same arenas. Thus this definition:  A Spiritual Arena is an aspect of life that can either excite, sustain, and fulfill a person's human spirit on the one hand, or hurt, wound, and even devastate it on the other. (Your relationship with your child for example, or your lover; your bodily self care, and your work life, etc.) 


Awareness of which arenas are currently most alive in a given person can suggest ways of connecting with that person that bring greater satisfaction to the relationships, in the case of hospitalization, providing a more personal patient experience. Ignoring these arenas can make a caregiver, or an entire team, appear stoically insensitive or coldly aloof.

A caregiver's inner awareness of his own current and past vivid experience in these three dozen primary spiritual arenas can be key to briefly but warmly joining another person, human to human, in any given situation. With a few developed skills such identification only takes a few seconds. Primary Spiritual Arenas, such as the various human relationships we value, have a profound influence on our every day. A caregiver's increased awareness of how she is doing in each of these arenas invariably improves her capacity to connect emotionally to patients.

              The attached Video briefly describes each arena,  allowing a caregiver to quickly familiarize hierself with these primary spiritual arenas. The Survey Instrument facilitates self-assessment of the arenas to further personalize the framework as a self care and listening tool. 

              Click the research link above-right, or the button above or here for basic unpublished research results using the instrument with 2,000 certified chaplains, pastoral counselors, and pastoral educators across the U.S.

36 Primary Spiritual Arenas