umu.sePublications
Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
Religious objects and the coping process: case studies on prayer cloths as transitional objects in religious coping
Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
2015 (English)In: Archive for the Psychology of Religion/ Archiv für Religionspsychologie, ISSN 0084-6724, E-ISSN 1573-6121, Vol. 37, no 1, 54-83 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study addresses the psychological functions of physical religious objects in religious coping by presenting case studies on the use of prayer cloths. The cases are selected from a qualitative, in-depth interview study among Swedish practising Christians suffering from cancer, on religious experiences and expressions that serve in the process of coping with a life situation changed by the disease. It is argued that current psychological theories on coping and religion lack tools for understanding the role of physical religious objects in the process of religious coping. A theoretical framework that remedies this problem is suggested and applied to the case studies. The key feature of the theoretical framework is that it modifies and extends the coping theory of Kenneth Pargament by drawing on resources from object relations theory, especially the concept of "transitional object". The results suggests that the creation and/or handling of transitional objects is a reconstructing or preserving coping method, and that prayer cloths function as transitional objects when they (a) facilitate transition/movement between the inner subjective world and the outer objective world by being charged with significance, and (b) function as a coping tool for conserving this significance.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 37, no 1, 54-83 p.
Keyword [en]
psychology of religion, coping, object relations theory, transitional objects, prayer cloths, religious objects
National Category
Religious Studies
Research subject
religionspsykologi
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-100892DOI: 10.1163/15736121-12341301ISI: 000350898600004OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-100892DiVA: diva2:794672
Available from: 2015-03-12 Created: 2015-03-12 Last updated: 2017-12-04Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Religiositet och coping: religionspsykologiska studier av kristna med cancer
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Religiositet och coping: religionspsykologiska studier av kristna med cancer
2017 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis investigates the interdependence of religiosity and a life situation changed by cancer, focusing especially on the coping process. This implies analyses of a number of identified expressions of religiosity regarding prerequisites and functions in the coping process. In order to synthesize the results from the studies, the aim has been operationalized into three comprehensive research questions that were posed to each of the empirical studies of the thesis: 1) What are the functions of the analysed expressions of religiosity during the coping process? 2) What prerequisites for the influence of religiosity on the coping process can be identified?  3) How is religiosity influenced by a life situation changed by cancer? The empirical studies are presented in four separate articles. Each of the studies has its own specific research questions that are related to the comprehensive research questions. The method was qualitative and explorative. The research material was gathered with qualitative interviews of 20 Swedish informants of varying gender, age, congregational affiliation and diagnosis. The informants defined themselves as Christians and practised their Christian faith and had or had had a cancer disease. There is longitudinal data from half of the group. The theoretical framework was based on the coping theories developed by Kenneth Pargament and Ruard Ganzevoort and complemented by, among other things, the object-relations theoretical concept of transitional objects.

The results show that most of the analysed expressions of religiosity function as a preserving coping method but some of them also function as a reconstructing coping method. In some cases, the expressions of religiosity also function as methods of attributing control, either to God or to the individual. Two main groups of prerequisites for the expressions of religiosity were identified in conjunction with the coping process: contextual and psychological. The former could in turn be divided into religious and medical contexts; the latter into several different kinds, such as perceptual psychological factors, the need to create and use transitional objects, locus of control, and personality traits. Reconstructing coping methods imply varying degrees of changes in the informants’ religiosity, both regarding the analysed expression of religiosity and other expressions of religiosity. In addition to gaining insights into the interdependence of religion and coping for Christians living with cancer, the study contributes to the development of the psychology of religion coping theory by adding to the theory: 1) suggested specifications to the current concepts of Pargament’s coping theory; 2) the concept coping tool; 3) the distinction between functional and relational regarding the concepts of coping mechanism and coping method; 4) the coping mechanism attributing, and 5) the distinction between unilateral and bilateral deferring coping styles. The results indicate that the coping process can include a creative element in the form of a search for, or creation of, functional coping methods and/or coping tools which enhance the functionality of the coping process.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå universitet, 2017. 110 p.
Keyword
psychology of religion, religious studies, coping, coping process, coping theosy, Christians, religiosity, cancer, religionspsykologi, religionsvetenskap, coping, copingprocess, copingteori, kristna, religiositet, cancer
National Category
Religious Studies
Research subject
religionspsykologi
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-135078 (URN)978-91-7601-692-3 (ISBN)
Public defence
2017-06-16, Hörsal E, humansithuset, Umeå universitet 901 87, Umeå, 13:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Swedish Cancer Society, CAN 2006/1181
Available from: 2017-05-24 Created: 2017-05-18 Last updated: 2017-06-19Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Other links

Publisher's full text

Authority records BETA

Lundmark, Mikael

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Lundmark, Mikael
By organisation
Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies
In the same journal
Archive for the Psychology of Religion/ Archiv für Religionspsychologie
Religious Studies

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar

doi
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

doi
urn-nbn
Total: 209 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf