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Spirituality

Does religion make people more moral ?

September 13, 2014 | Comment icon 259 comments



How does religion affect morality ? Image Credit: sxc.hu
A new study has examined how religious and political affiliations affect how we perceive morality.
Researchers from Saint Peter's University in New Jersey and the University of Illinois in Chicago asked 1,252 adults from the United and States and Canada a number of questions about their experiences both committing and witnessing good and bad deeds.

While those from different religious and political backgrounds might seem to be at loggerheads on a number of moral issues, the study found that people tend to commit the same number of good deeds regardless of their personal beliefs.
There were however some differences among the participants - deeply religious people tended to experience a more intense feeling of guilt or embarrassment upon committing an immoral act and a deeper sense of pride or satisfaction when committing a moral one.

On the political side, liberals and conservatives appeared to have similar morals but tended to think and talk about moral concepts in different ways.

"As far as I know, this is the first study that's used this kind of lived-experience approach to track morality as it's happening," said psychologist Dan Wisneski.

Source: Live Science | Comments (259)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #250 Posted by Leonardo 8 years ago
Actually this is wrong. A human intellectual construct, such a 'human rights", does not exist until it is created. There is no evidence that "personhood" is an intellectual construction. It is self-evident that all human beings are born 'persons', but that some human beings have that 'personhood' denied to them or taken from them. As all human beings are born 'persons', all human beings are born with the same innate rights of 'personhood'. In any society, if those innate rights of 'personhood' are not applied equally to all human beings in that society then it [the society] is guilty of ethica... [More]
Comment icon #251 Posted by Mr Walker 8 years ago
There is no evidence that "personhood" is an intellectual construction. It is self-evident that all human beings are born 'persons', but that some human beings have that 'personhood' denied to them or taken from them. As all human beings are born 'persons', all human beings are born with the same innate rights of 'personhood'. In any society, if those innate rights of 'personhood' are not applied equally to all human beings in that society then it [the society] is guilty of ethical/moral mistreatment and inequality. In slave-owning societies, no matter when they existed, those innate rights of... [More]
Comment icon #252 Posted by Leonardo 8 years ago
Human rights is an intellectual construction, but so is the concept of humanity or being human, and thus "person hood" is a construct of abstract thought. I'm sorry that you believe that no-one is born a 'human being' or a 'person'. That miscomprehension does reveal why you argue that what is true, is not, however.
Comment icon #253 Posted by DieChecker 8 years ago
Yes it does. If it means treating someone in a way that you would object to being treated yourself. I think slavery fits that. I'd object to being treated badly if I was a felon also. But if I was a felon, I'd treat others like I wanted to be treated. Also, I treat felons like I would want to be treated... IF I WAS A FELON. The perceived superiority of Europeans over Africans was an easy justification for treating them as subhuman and "not like us". The lack of empathy towards slaves provided the basis for good people to engage in this trade that we today view as immoral. There were a lot of s... [More]
Comment icon #254 Posted by Arbenol 8 years ago
I'd object to being treated badly if I was a felon also. But if I was a felon, I'd treat others like I wanted to be treated. Also, I treat felons like I would want to be treated... IF I WAS A FELON. i think it was Frank who earlier said that there were some caveats when applying the goden rule. It's a fair point. I work with criminals. And believe me, no one bleats and whines more when they become the victims.
Comment icon #255 Posted by Insaniac 8 years ago
I believe only if we cultivate said morals and principal's in our hearts do we become more moral and righteous, and less confused.
Comment icon #256 Posted by Mr Walker 8 years ago
I'm sorry that you believe that no-one is born a 'human being' or a 'person'. That miscomprehension does reveal why you argue that what is true, is not, however. We are ONLY "born a human being" because we believe this to be so. The whole idea/belief/concept is a product of human self aware cognition, as are the very terms themselves. I argue, as always, from fact and logic not for belief or emotional desire. it is BECAUSE we see humans in a certain way that we then construct how we think we should treat them. Hence the difference in opinion about abortion. Some people see the unborn as not ye... [More]
Comment icon #257 Posted by White Crane Feather 8 years ago
DS9 struck me as quite capitalist. It even had a resident Farengi. Indeed it was a crossroads colony. The only series that seemed to take gold press Latnum seriously.
Comment icon #258 Posted by rrk 8 years ago
Morality is simple, just treat others they way you would like to be treated. This seems to be hard for some because of the I factor, where I am better or I am more important then others. Religion ceases to be a factor because religion is humans grasping for eternal life and that makes it a personal thing not really caring about society but about the individual self.
Comment icon #259 Posted by Arpee 8 years ago
Earlier this week, a new report released by the National Study of American Religious Giving put a rest to that myth that religious people are more charitable than the non-religious. It turns out nearly 75% of charitable giving by all AmericansÖ benefits places of worship and faith-based charities. A lot of the money isnít helping the poor and less fortunate. Itís going to the church. Read more: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2013/11/28/are-religious-people-really-more-generous-than-atheists-a-new-study-puts-that-myth-to-rest/#ixzz3EIvC8pqp Keep in mind that Churches don't pay tax... [More]


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