Making Spiritual Sense of Disability
Exploring the Spiritual and Relational Significance of “Felt-Sense” for Adults and Children with “Diffabilities”
Keywords:children, diffabilities, disability, religion, sensory processing, special needs, spirituality, worship
An earlier version of this article was presented at the Spiritual Care Australia National Conference held in Melbourne in 2016. The article explores the spiritual and relational significance of “felt sense” for children with special needs or “diffabilities” (Dubbeld 2015) in the context of Christian worship. “Diffabilities” is short for different abilities. There are three key areas used in this reflective article: (i) work by the Australian researcher, Hyde (2008) on the “felt sense” with regard to Christian understanding of spirituality and children; (ii) a neurophysiological perspective, the science of sensory integration in relationship to sensory processing difficulties (Kranowitz 1998) in children with “diffabilities”; (iii) and spirituality or the “multifaceted living of faith” (Schnieders 2003) in Christian worship for children with “diffabilties” whose experience and processing of sensory stimuli is significantly different to that of other children.
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