Hardev Kaur (PhD) is an Associate Professor at the Department of English, Faculty of Modern Languages and Communication, Universiti Putra Malaysia. Her research interests are African and Caribbean literature and trauma studies. E-mail: hardevkaur@upm.edu.my


Ecopsychology: Human Nature Bonding in Healing Trauma

Abstract: In recent years, many studies have been conducted in various fields and aspects of life to ascertain how traumatic events bring about adverse effects to affected victims. Natural disasters, for instance, have played a huge part in the ever-growing traumatic ordeals experienced by many as it often “leaves the spiritual domain in disarray” (Wilson and Thomas). Since trauma has, unfortunately, been a common occurrence for many people, several different studies and fields have developed to help trauma victims understand and heal from their devastating experiences. Eco-psychology is seen as an emerging area of study that helps to better understand the effectiveness of human-nature bond in negotiating trauma. Eco-psychologists recognize that a capacity to live in balance with nature is essential to human emotional and spiritual well-being, “a view that is consistent with the healing traditions of indigenous peoples of past and present, but lacking in present-day Western psychological theory” (Roszak and Kanner). This deeply bonded and reciprocal relationship between humans and nature is crucial in helping to heal the trauma being experienced by an individual. This study will explore the relationship between humans and nature and how this union is crucial in helping to heal trauma. A central aspect of this study is to identify the role nature plays in the awakening of the ecological unconscious of those who have faced natural disaster as well as investigating the therapeutic role nature plays in negotiating the psychological trauma experienced.
Keywords: ecopsychology, trauma, nature, bonding, healing