Tag Archives: Psychology of Religion

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Psychologist Dr. Jonathan Jong draws on experimental research utilizing terror management theory to discuss the role of religious and other worldviews in assuaging the fear of the inevitable—DEATH.

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Jong

This past January, the Society for Personality and Social Psychology had its biggest turn out to date for its 17th Annual Convention in San Diego, California. Despite religion, as a broad category of research, all to often being missing in action in the psychological sciences, researchers embracing the study of religion were hard to miss throughout SPSP 2016. Conference report for The Religious Studies Project by Adam Baimel, University of British Columbia.

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Joe Henrich presenting.

Human reincarnation: Same person, different body, another life. While conceptual scaffolding surrounding the idea of reincarnation can vary widely from culture to culture, in this podcast Claire White draws on some of her recent research pointing out that many similarities exist in how individuals reason about and discern the pre-rebirth identities of the reincarnated.

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reincarnation

The International Association for the Psychology of Religion (IAPR) 2015 World Congress was held on August 17th-20th. Conference report for The Religious Studies Project by Alex Uzdavines, a PhD student at Case Western Reserve University.

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The Historic Penisula, with the Hagia Sophia (middle) and the Blue Mosque (far right).

Conference report for The Religious Studies Project by David Bradley, a PhD student at Case Western Reserve University.

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David Bradley with "Super" Phil Zimbardo. Photo by Alex Uzdavines.

In this interview, Dr. Julie Exline discusses what led to her interest in Struggles and some of the background behind the development of the Religious and Spiritual Struggle Scale. She goes on to talk about why the scale includes struggles relevant to both religious believers and nonbelievers and how this work related to some of her current work on god images in both groups.

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exline_julie

Those of us within psychology of religion who study secularity are privileged to be working in a time where secular beliefs and nonbelievers are starting to be taken seriously within the field as a whole.

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survey

Is religion good for your health and wellbeing? Does religion promote prosociality? While positive stereotypes prevail in these domains, studies also typically answer these questions in the affirmative and as such, it is easy to think that there must be something special, sui generis, or even perhaps supernatural at work, which increases psychological health and drives charitable behavior. In this interview, Luke Galen provides a critical assessment of the literature to date, and presents some of his own path-breaking work.

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Galen

Religious actions speak louder than words. Dr. Jonathan Lanman on credibility enhancing displays (CREDs), and the role that such public displays of commitment play in the acquisition of both belief and nonbelief.

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atheism-explained01

In this hard-hitting report, Alex Uzdavines reflects on the highs and lows of his recent experience at the American Psychological Association Division 36 Society for the Psychology of Religion and Spirituality 2015 Mid-Year Conference hosted by Brigham Young University (BYU) in Provo, Utah, United States on March 20th and 21st 2015.

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Alex Uzdavines

Ladd begins the interview by discussing what it means to pray. Perhaps most important, he explains how prayer is defined for research purposes, emphasizing that there is no essential definition, nor is one desirable. In taking care to uphold a scientific understanding of prayer, rather than a theologically apologetic one, Ladd understands prayer as a “psychological phenomena”, but with a “theological sensitivity to it”.

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In many writings, the term spirituality is credited with the positive and the term religiosity is credited with the negative. Dr. Schnell shifts the focus from the content and valence of these concepts to how valuable these concepts are for individuals.

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meaning

Recently, scholars have placed the concept of ‘meaning making’ as an important area of focus within psychology of religion. Some people find meaning in religious or spiritual experience and beliefs while others find meaning on more secular mediums in life. However, if humans are truly on a “search for meaning”, as Frankl has argued, what might be some of the sources of such meaning?

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Dr. Tatjana Schnell

The RSP Psychology of Religion Participatory Panel Special took place during the International Association for the Psychology of Religion 2013 world congress this August in Switzerland, hosted at the at the University of Lausanne. We asked for the RSP listeners to steer the conversation and YOU responded with tough questions covering a wide variety of topics ranging from “labeling / terminology” and “evolutionary theory as a unifying framework” to “why psychologists of religion hate God” (as it turns out they don’t).

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Psychologists of Religion Coleman ,Streib, Hood, Brandt & Silver