"Being in that environment can be very therapeutic": Spiritual experiences in nature

Tristan Leslie Snell, Janette Graetz Simmonds

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this research was to investigate the qualities and outcomes of participants spiritual experiences in nature. Twenty participants from Victoria, Australia, volunteered to take part in semi-structured interviews. Interview transcripts were subject to Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis, leading to the identification of superordinate themes and subthemes. This analysis indicated that spiritual experiences in nature may lead to long-term psychological well-being as a consequence of changes in self and personality, the formation of vivid memories that could be drawn upon later, and increased contact with nature. Interview participants also discussed a desire to protect and care for environments that were able to elicit significant affective experiences. Comparisons with findings from previous qualitative studies and implications for future research in ecopsychology are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)326 - 335
Number of pages10
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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