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EHE Process/Spiritual Path ,Spirituality
Record Type: Review   ID: 301

The Psychology of Religion: An Empirical Approach (2nd ed.)

Hood, Ralph W., Jr., Spilka, Bernard, Hunsberger, Bruce, & Corsuch, Richard

 There is a new chapter on religion and coping in this edition, but all previous chapters have been greatly enlarged because of the large amount of empirical research on religious topics. An interesting feature are "Research Boxes," which briefly summarize key research reports. Each chapter closes with a useful overview. The chapter titles are: I. The Psychological Nature and Functions of Religion; Religion in Childhood; Religious Socialization and Thought in Adolescence; Religion in Adult Life; Religion and Death; Religious Experience; Mysticism; Conversion; The Social Psychology of Religious Organizations: Religion and Morality; Religion, Coping, and Adjustment; Religious and Mental Disorder; and an Epilogue, which calls for both more empirical research and for theory in the psychology of religion. The only topic I find missing is secular spiritual experience, which occurs in many contexts and, for example, as in ecopsychology, are playing a role in spiritualizing the world, albeit in a way outside of the standard religions of the world. This is a tremendous review of almost every aspect of religion you can think of, and each is covered in depth. It is a must for graduate students in search of a topic, but it also could serve as a reference book in addition to being a textbook, and I found it "a good read" as well.
Publisher Information:New York: Guilford, 1996. Pp. xii +546. Author Ind: 522-536; Bibl: 455-521; Chap. notes; 1 graph; Subj Ind: 537-546; 49 tables
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