In response to Hartelius (2017), I suggest that the evidence for perennialism or essentialism can be tested, and is publicly accessible, through engagement with the spiritual practices that have given rise to cross-cultural mystical experiences with common characteristics. This suggests that essentialism could be included in transpersonal psychology (and psychology in general). I suggest that there is no reason why transpersonal psychology should exclude metaphysical claims, as long as they are inferred or implied by research and evidence, explicitly stated and viewed as secondary. It is impossible to avoid metaphysics, and it is important for transpersonal psychologists (and all psychologists and scientists in general) to be explicit about their metaphysical assumptions.
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Taylor, S. (2017). Keeping the account open: On metaphysical mistrust in transpersonal psychology (A response to Hartelius, 2017). International Journal of Transpersonal Studies, 36 (2). http://dx.doi.org/10.24972/ijts.2017.36.2.111