Beyond restoration to transformation: positive outcomes in the rehabilitation of acquired brain injury

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Abstract

Objectives

This paper compares the situation of the person with acquired brain injury to that of the people of Israel in the sixth century BCE (before the current era) during the period of exile in Babylon. Both situations are characterized by traumatic multiple losses, and a struggle to regain a sense of identity: personal, national or spiritual. Evidence from the literature on both brain injury rehabilitation and from the Hebrew Scriptures indicates that models of restoration of function and transformation of suffering have been applied to both situations. The relative strengths and weaknesses of these models are considered, and it is argued that models of transformation of suffering have much to offer, especially in the longer term psychotherapeutic rehabilitation of people with acquired brain injury, when restoration of function has reached its limits.

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