An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity
Martin Luther King Jr.
A changing demographic pattern in Ireland brings the reality of cultural diversity. At LifeChange, rather than treating cultural-diversity as an afterthought, we hold to the philosophy that we need to respond by placing culture at the centre of what it means to be human. Mays and Albee (1992) have referred to the “cultural insensitivity” of traditional psychotherapy and how this has gravely failed minority populations living in Ireland. Helman (2000) simply defines culture as a “set of guidelines inherited by members of a particular society that tell them how to view the world, how to experience it emotionally and how to behave in relation to other people. At LifeChange it is not suffice to know your client from the “the inside out” but we must also understand them from “the outside in” appreciating how the socio-cultural dimension can become internalised and contribute to the formation of self.
that there are underlying philosophical dimensions and observable cultural aspects that require immediate attention. Firstly, is the client’s concept of reality dualistic or holistic in nature? The second dimension is the concept of self, whether the individual holds an autonomous or an indexical “sociocentric’ conceptualisation. The third aspect, construction of morality is based on personal choice versus fate distinction, moreover, the fourth principle, the concept of time reviews the significance of how time is experienced, whether clients are future-orientated or predominantly past-oriented as expressed in more collectivist societies. Finally, the significance of place is conveyed in the affiliation that cultures have with their physical inhabitant or land.