Center for Psychology of Religion


The Centre for Psychology of Religion has as objective to study, from a psychological perspective (concepts, theories and methods), religion and religious phenomena as well as to promote interdisciplinarity between psychology and the human and social sciences of religion. The Centre was founded and directed by Antoine Vergote (1961-1987) and Jean-Marie Jaspard (1977-2001). It is currently directed by Vassilis Saroglou (2001-). Research carried out in the Centre (today and in the past) covers five main domains of psychology of religion:
  • personality and social psychology of religion
  • cross-cultural psychology of religion
  • psychology of religious development
  • clinical and health psychology of religion
  • interdisciplinarity with other sciences of religion
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circumcicison-s
Religious circumcision is not simply a ritual of affiliation and alliance with the divine and the community. It denotes exclusivist identity, discomfort and excessive concern with sexuality, as well as dominance and submission reminding those in hazing practices.
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Taiwanese
Religiosity among East Asians (e.g., Buddhists) was found across three studies to predict tolerance of ethnic and religious outgroups, measured both explicitly and implicitly. This contrasts with Western monotheistic prejudice. This tolerance though may not include atheist targets.
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Muslim education
Opposition to Islamic religious instruction for Muslim children in state schools in Germany is predicted either by xenophobic, anti-Muslim, and even anti-Jew attitudes, or by global anti-religious sentiments that include opposition to Christian education too.
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hot sauce
Religious claims of “liking the sinner” (gay person) though “hating the sin” (homosexuality) seem not to be true. Using the paradigm of the hot sauce allocation as indicator of aggression, we found that religious people are prone to physically aggress a fictitious gay target who praised gay rights.
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mother teresa
Prosocial behavior as an outcome of religiosity has been questioned as unreal or only being a stereotype. In a recent experiment, religious people helped another person in need more than did the non-religious. This behavior implied some cost and was measured in a real life context.
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admiration small
Spirituality is not only a response to negative experiences; it also increases after self-transcendent positive emotions. This was shown for awe. New experiments show this is also the case with admiration and elevation, since they boost meaningfulness of life and benevolence of the world.
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Buddha
Does hetero-religious priming increase or decrease prosociality and outgroup prejudice? It depends on what is the culturally different religion. As shown in a recent experiment, religious ideas nonconsciously shape behavior in a different from the origin culture.
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| 16/10/2014 |
Center for Psychology of Religion
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