Podium Presentation 6th World Congress on Positive Psychology 2019

The Roles Of Divine Attributions And Afterlife Belief In Well-Being’s Relationship To Religiousness (#153)

Nick Stauner 1 , Julie J Exline 1
  1. Psychological Sciences, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio, United States

Theoretically, religions can support well-being by providing meaning, such as by guiding pursuits of a desirable immortality and a supportive, interactive, personal relationship with God(s), who can serve to explain life events. With 3,270 undergraduates from three U.S. universities, we replicated the mediating role of meaning between religiousness and well-being, then tested whether divine attributions and afterlife belief mediate effects of religiousness on meaning. Results did not support these hypotheses, but meaning partially mediated an effect of afterlife belief on life satisfaction. When controlling meaning and afterlife belief, religiousness predicted life satisfaction weakly and negatively. In an exploratory alternative model, religiousness partially mediated effects of divine attributions and afterlife beliefs on meaning and life satisfaction. This model replicated in three universities. Thus, divine attributions and afterlife belief could increase life satisfaction by increasing meaning. Afterlife belief may increase meaning directly and indirectly through religiousness. Divine attributions may increase meaning indirectly, affecting religiousness first and life satisfaction last. If religiousness increases life satisfaction indirectly through meaning in life, this cannot operate through afterlife belief or divine attributions. Religiousness may decrease life satisfaction slightly when it does not increase meaning or coincide with differences in afterlife belief or divine attributions.