PLO516 Logotherapy and Existential Analysis for Moral Injury

FACULTY:  Edward Marshall, MD, PhD. (Profile)


This course offers an overview of Moral Injury, a multi-dimensional syndrome. Moral Injury was first described in the military context, and it is now understood to affect people in other occupations such as healthcare, pastoral care, chaplaincy, education, law enforcement, legal professions, disaster relief, international aid, social justice, and those in the helping professions.

Moral Injury occurs when deeply held universal values, beliefs, ethical, and moral principles have been trespassed. These “values transgressions” leading to Moral Injury, can be witnessed as committed by others, or by oneself. The primary symptoms following the experience of Moral Injury are guilt, shame, remorse, anger, disgust, feelings of betrayal, spiritual struggles, disorientation, loss of meaning, and despair. The secondary symptoms of Moral Injury may include anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress symptoms. 

Viktor E. Frankl’s Logotherapy and Existential Analysis (LTEA) is an evidence-based meaning-centered approach to psychotherapy and pastoral counseling that has been successfully applied in the treatment of conditions involving existential issues. This course examines the contribution of LTEA to the conceptual understanding of Moral Injury and to its related symptomatology. It reviews the application of LTEA principles and structured meaning-centered interventions for the management of Moral Injury.

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