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Goodbye, Oedipus. Hello, Isaac. That's the basic premise of a new online course being offered through the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine.
Funded by a grant from the John Templeton Foundation and titled "A Biblical Approach to Mental Health," the class examines how hope-filled Bible stories can and should substitute for the fatalistic Greek narratives that serve as case studies in traditional psychotherapy. Abraham and Isaac, for instance, would bump Oedipus and Laius.
"The Greek notion of a tragedy is that people can't change," says UIC professor of clinical psychology Kalman J. Kaplan, a Fulbright Fellow and widely published author. He'll co-teach the course with the help of chaplain Elizabeth Recht Jones, coordinator for UIC's Religion, Spirituality and Mental Health program. "So if you're using stories that imply people can't change, what's the point of doing therapy?"...