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a type of therapy, based on existential philosophy, emphasizing confrontation, primarily spontaneous interaction, and feeling experiences rather than rational thinking, with less attention given to patient's resistance; the therapist is involved on the same level and to the same degree as the patient.
Synonym(s): existential psychiatry
Etymology: L, existere, to spring forth; Gk, psyche, mind, iatreia, medical care
a school of psychiatry based on the philosophy of existentialism that emphasizes an analytic, holistic approach in which mental disorders are viewed as deviations within the total structure of an individual's existence rather than as results of any biologically or culturally related factors.