Midlife transformation of Christian professionals in Hong Kong: evolving a model for spiritual practice

Lai, Christine (2019) Midlife transformation of Christian professionals in Hong Kong: evolving a model for spiritual practice. Doctoral thesis, Anglia Ruskin University.

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Abstract

This research investigates the midlife transformation of Christian professionals in Hong Kong through a model of spiritual practice, and identifies the possibilities and usefulness for development of this model. By building on my personal experience and the needs of my Christian midlife professionals; and by learning from existing models used in Hong Kong, including Buford’s Halftime model, the Ignatian spiritual exercises and the Inspired Spiritual Education programme, I designed and tested a model of spiritual practice for midlife Christian professionals in Hong Kong. I adopted certain prominent contemporary theological perspectives from Ignatian spirituality, supported by Buddhist mindfulness. The design was simple, flexible, practical and suitable for the six participants in their local contexts. The structure was eight-weeks’ mindful breathing, silent meditation and journaling with different meditative focus every two weeks. I carried out individual interviews for each participant in an open unstructured way every fortnight. Using the method of Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis, empirical data was collected and analysed from 24 interviews. Three themes emerged: connectedness, discernment and transformation. These represented an interior spiritual journey during which the participants went through a movement of examen and discernment in connecting to their selves, their past, those significant to them, and to God. The feedback from the participants provided positive endorsement of the model with constructive suggestions for its further development. As the first study focusing on the spiritual experience of midlife Christian professionals in Hong Kong, the themes revealed the vitality and dynamism of the spiritual experience when engaging with this model. The model was found to be simple, flexible, fruitful and practical in the interfaith intercultural context of Hong Kong. I have already started to apply this model in my other consultancy services to corporations.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Keywords: Midlife, Christian Professionals, Hong Kong, Halftime, Ignatian Spirituality, Buddhist Mindfulness, Connectedness, Discernment, Transformation, Interiority
Faculty: Theses from Anglia Ruskin University
Depositing User: Lisa Blanshard
Date Deposited: 09 Jul 2019 12:18
Last Modified: 14 Nov 2019 16:08
URI: http://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/704520

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