Rogers' Late Conceptualization of the Fully Functioning Individual: Correspondences and Contrasts with Buddhist Psychology


Harman, Jan I.


 In the last decade of his life, Rogers' conceptualization of the fully functioning individual, first fully described in 1961, was broadened to encompass new discoveries about the nature of human physical potentialities and of the physical universe. Rogers (1980) endeavored to describe the "person of tomorrow" who would live in an era when inner exploration of psychological capacities would commonly include meditative and other means of altering states of consciousness for purposes of enhanced self-understanding and physical well-being. He pointed out some correspondences between his then-nascent conceptions of new dimensions in psychic potential and models from Eastern traditions, and reprinted earlier, explicit references to Buddhist and Taoist principles as resonant with his views. Correspondences and contrasts between person-centered and traditional Buddhist psychological theories and the respective phenomenological realities they describe are explored here in greater detail. Finally, methodo- logical approaches to becoming a more fully functioning individual through person-centered therapeutic and meditative practices are compared.