Retaining the meaning of the words religiousness and spirituality: a commentary on the WHOQOL SRPB group's "a cross-cultural study of spirituality, religion, and personal beliefs as components of quality of life" (62: 6, 2005, 1486-1497).

Published

Journal Article

Recent years have seen increasing recognition paid to the relation of religiousness/spirituality (R/S) to health care and research. This has led to the development of more inclusive and trans-culturally validated measurements of R/S. This paper comments on the WHOQOL SRPB Group's "A cross-cultural study of spirituality, religion, and personal beliefs as components of quality of life" (62: 6, 2005, 1486-1497), a recently published paper in Social Science & Medicine, and illustrates a possible problem in the measurement of R/S, especially as related to the study of mental health outcomes. Some scales have included questions about psychological well-being, satisfaction, connectedness with others, hopefulness, meaning and purpose in life, or altruistic values as part of their measure of R/S. These questions are really tapping indicators of mental health, and should not be included in the definition of R/S itself. Otherwise, tautology is the result, and it should not be surprising that such measures of R/S (defined by questions tapping mental health) are related to mental health outcomes.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Moreira-Almeida, A; Koenig, HG

Published Date

  • August 2006

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 63 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 843 - 845

PubMed ID

  • 16650515

Pubmed Central ID

  • 16650515

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0277-9536

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.socscimed.2006.03.001

Language

  • eng

Conference Location

  • England