Associations between Multidimensional Spirituality and Mental Health


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Associations between Multidimensional Spirituality and Mental Health is a well-researched Social and Behavioral Sciences Thesis/Dissertation topic, it is to be used as a guide or framework for your Academic Research.


Research in the areas of religion and spirituality and positive psychology have experienced considerable growth within the past two decades. Such growth has led to a plethora of research identifying important constructs in both areas and key relationships among them.

The current literature is, however, limited by unclear distinctions between the constructs of religion and spirituality, and a general lack of research into their associations with positive psychological traits and mental health status. As such, the present study aimed to investigate a new model of spirituality, the RiTE model, which is a three-part model designed to capture the multifaceted nature of the spiritual experience.

The RiTE model was investigated in its relationship with mental health status in the context of a parallel mediation model, with self-forgiveness, gratitude, and mindfulness serving as parallel mediators.

Results suggested that ritualistic and existential spirituality displayed direct associations with mental health status (positive and negative, respectively), while theistic spirituality displayed indirect associations. Indirect associations between theistic spirituality and mental health status were primarily a function of higher levels of gratitude, while existential spirituality was associated with higher levels of all three mediator variables.

Clinicians may benefit from utilizing this knowledge when conceptualizing an individual’s spiritual worldview and utilizing spirituality when attempting to enhance client resilience via positive psychological approaches. Future studies should provide further insight


Religion and spirituality play an integral role in American society and culture, with survey-based estimates suggesting that approximately 76% of all Americans believe in some sort of higher power (Pew Research Center, 2014). More broadly, 82% of Americans described religion as being at least “somewhat important” to their daily life, and 83% of Americans experience feelings of “spiritual peace and well-being” multiple times per year.

These feelings of well-being are also not necessarily driven by the particular aspects of one’s spiritual or religious beliefs, as people from theistic and nontheistic backgrounds alike endorse these feelings, albeit to varying degrees (Pew Research Center, 2014).

In light of the ubiquitous and multifaceted nature of religion and spirituality, its influence on human behavior and functioning have become a highly popular field of inquiry within the field of psychology (see

One aspect of this field of inquiry is the relationship between religion/spirituality and health outcomes, both physical and mental (see Lovelock, Griffin, & Worthington, 2013; Pargament, 2013).

For those who experience mental health problems, religious/spiritual beliefs and practices have been linked to improvements in a variety of outcomes including, but not limited to, depression (Dein, 2013; Smith, McCullough, & Poll, 2003), anxiety (Koenig, McCullough, & Larson, 2001), suicidal behavior (Lawrence, Oquendo, & Stanley, 2016), substance use (Webb, Hirsch, & Toussaint, 2015),

psychosis (Mohr, 2013), anger (Hirsch, Webb, & Jeglic, 2012), and of interest in the present study, mental health status, or one’s current level of functioning in light of mental health-related symptoms (Bormann, Thorp, Wetherell, Golshan, & Lang, 2013; Webb, Phillips, Bumgarner, & Conway-Williams, 2013).

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Thesis/Dissertaion Topic


Social and Behavioral Sciences

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