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Psychological Adjustment and Religiousness: The Multivariate Belief-Motivation Theory of Religiousness

Charles A. Schaefer and Richard L. Gorsuch
Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion
Vol. 30, No. 4 (Dec., 1991), pp. 448-461
DOI: 10.2307/1387279
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1387279
Page Count: 14
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Psychological Adjustment and Religiousness: The Multivariate Belief-Motivation Theory of Religiousness
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Abstract

In this paper, the Multivariate Belief-Motivation Theory of Religiousness is presented. This theory integrates the religious domains of motivation, belief, and problem-solving style within one framework for the prediction of psychological adjustment. Religious problem-solving style is incorporated in a mediating role. Motivation, belief, and problem-solving style are operationalized respectively in terms of intrinsic/extrinsic religiousness, concept of God, and religious coping style. Trait anxiety is used as the criterion variable. The theory was evaluated for 161 students attending four Christian Protestant colleges. The results supported the necessity of differentiating religiousness into both motivation and belief in order to predict and understand religious coping style and anxiety. Religious problem-solving style mediated the relationship between belief and anxiety. However, both motivation and problem-solving style contributed unique portions of the variance in anxiety, which suggested that motivation was not entirely mediated by problem-solving style.

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