Dallas International University, Beth Argot

Dallas, Texas
2021

To study the relationship between historical worship practices and arts and trauma healing practices in order to explore the potential for healing and increased wellbeing of worshipers within the context of public worship.

Researcher(s): Beth Argot 
Academic Discipline: World Arts

Project Summary 

To study the relationship between historical worship practices and arts and trauma healing practices to explore the potential of healing and increased wellbeing within the context of renewed worship. 

What questions about worship and your discipline will be guiding your project?

What instances within church history showed congregations dealing with traumatic events and how did they confront the situations within the context of worship? 

What are the neurobiological characteristics of trauma that inform Arts & Trauma Healing practices?

How can neurobiological responses common to both worship and trauma healing contribute to the development of contextualized worship practices within the contemporary church to promote healing and nurture wellbeing and resilience?

How do you envision this project will strengthen the worship life of congregations?

Developing contextualized worship practices based on historical example and proven trauma healing methods will provide opportunity for natural healing within the context of worship. It will also contribute to wellbeing and resilience, which will prepare congregants for future difficulties or hardship in life. The practices will also encourage holistic spiritual relationship, creating opportunity for greater heart connection and knowing of God. 

What do you expect might be your greatest challenges (or challenging opportunities)?

Most churches are ill-informed on trauma, especially the prevalence of it within congregations. 

Understanding, valuing, and providing opportunity to develop holistic aspects of faith in worship – cognitive, affective, and volitional – has diminished since the Reformation. Since true knowing of God involves heart, mind, and soul, we need  a better understanding of what that means. Allowing for and learning how to encourage both left/right brain knowing of God will be a challenge.

What do you hope to learn from the Grants Event and other grant recipients?

I am excited to see the research interests of other grant recipients and connect with others who may be focused on spiritual formation in worship topics. I would also like to talk with others who may have published books, to learn more of the process of getting published.