Measurement of materialism and spiritualism in substance abuse research.

Journal Article

OBJECTIVE: A modified version of an instrument called the Mathew Materialism-Spiritualism Scale (MMSS), originally developed in India, was evaluated for possible use in substance abuse research in the U.S. METHOD: The scale was administered to 62 individuals recovering from substance use, 20 clergy people and 61 general controls. RESULTS: Test-retest reliability for the MMSS was verified by administering it to 18 control subjects on two separate occasions, 7 days apart. The Pearson correlation for the MMSS total scores was 0.83 (p < .0001). Internal consistency was examined with Cronbach's alpha in the entire sample of 143 subjects; the result for the total score was .93. Factor analysis showed a factor structure compatible with the subscales proposed by the developer. Women, in general, obtained higher spirituality scores. Members of the recovering group obtained significantly higher scores on "character" and "mysticism" than the general controls. When general controls were divided into MAST positive and MAST negative individuals, the MAST positive group obtained lower scores than the recovering group for "God," "mysticism" and "character." MAST negative individuals had lower scores on "mysticism" than the recovering group. Christians had higher scores on "God" and "religion" subscales than did nonChristians and agnostics. CONCLUSIONS: The results of this study need confirmation using an improved methodology and larger sample sizes. However, they suggest that the scale may be useful for the study of spirituality in the U.S.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Mathew, RJ; Mathew, VG; Wilson, WH; Georgi, JM

Published Date

  • July 1995

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 56 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 470 - 475

PubMed ID

  • 7674683

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0096-882X


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States