Academic journal article Scholarly Inquiry for Nursing Practice

Empathy, Diversity, and Telepathy in Mother-Daughter Dyads: An Empirical Investigation Utilizing Rogers' Conceptual Framework

Academic journal article Scholarly Inquiry for Nursing Practice

Empathy, Diversity, and Telepathy in Mother-Daughter Dyads: An Empirical Investigation Utilizing Rogers' Conceptual Framework

Article excerpt

The purpose of this study was to examine empathy, diversity, and telepathy in natural mother-daughter dyads. The investigation was conceptualized and conducted according to the concepts and principles of the Rogerian Science of Unitary Human Beings. The sample for this descriptive study consisted of 180 volunteer mother- daughter dyads; the mother served as the receiver and the child as sender of telepathic messages. Empathy and diversity were expected to be related to telepathy levels. Results indicated that one form of empathy (personal distress) and diversity were significantly (p< .05) related to telepathy. When the components of the diversity score were further examined, only those subjects who were moderately differentiated and mobile demonstrated significant telepathy scores. Multiple regression analysis showed that 6% of the variance in telepathy was accounted for by diversity and empathy. Findings added to what is known about living systems that manifest negentrophy and evolve toward increasing diversity.

The science of nursing is directed toward describing the life process in human beings and explaining and predicting the nature and direction of their development. Rogers (1983a) postulates that nursing is a learned profession and a science and that there is an organized body of abstract knowledge which allows for the study of unitary persons and their environments. The study of human beings and the patterns that are manifested by their behavior are central to the development of a holistic nursing practice that is theoretically grounded.

The current investigation was derived from Rogers' conceptualizations of unitary human beings and carried out within the quantitative tradition. The identification of the problem for study emerged from systematic observation in the author's nursing practice. The remarkable ability of some mothers to "know" that their child was in danger even when they were not in close physical proximity to the child piqued the author's interest. This repeated observation was interpreted and explained according to Rogers' conceptual system that postulates fourdimensional, unbounded energy fields which manifest continuously innovative patterning. The problem for study was stated as a question: is the telepathic level of the mother related to her level of diversity and empathy?

Theoretical Framework

Rogers proposes that human development is innovative. This is evidenced by the increasing number of people who possess higher sense perceptions, and whose knowledge of the world is aided by information gained other than through the five traditional senses (Rogers, 1970). Extrasensory perceptions are an extension of perception beyond the ordinary sensory sphere (Ehrenwald, 1978; LeShan & Margenau, 1982; Rhine, 1975).

No controlled studies were found that utilized child as sender, mother as receiver of telepathic thoughts. Several case reports were found (Schwartz, 1971; Tanous & Donnelly, 1979) that identified the parent as the receiver of telepathic messages, and Ehrenwald (1978) proposed this pattern as a form of early child-parent communication.

Empathy is a unique human behavior, a complex phenomenon that encompasses the totality of the individual; it involves interpreting and understanding the experiences and feelings of others, as well as recognizing one's own emotional reactions. Empathy emerges through a person's interaction with the environment. The observer shares the perceptual field of the observed; this sharing allows for one person to communicate sensing of the other person's world (Davis, 1980; Rogers, 1980).

People have the capacity to function at different developmental levels and may abandon their habitual integrative patterns to reorganize novel and unexpected patterns (Massey, 1983; Wapner & Werner, 1957; Witkin & Goodenough, 1977, 1981). This ability to fluctuate within styles, dependent upon the demands of a given situation, indicates the diversity of a human being's nature (Massey, 1983). …

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