Religion and Spirituality

Everett L. Worthington, Joshua N. Hook, Don E. Davis and Michael A. McDaniel

in Psychotherapy Relationships That Work

Second edition

Published in print April 2011 | ISBN: 9780199737208
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199894635 | DOI:
Religion and Spirituality

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Many clients highly value religious and spiritual (R/S) commitments, and many psychotherapists have accommodated secular treatments to R/S perspectives. We meta-analyzed fifty-one samples from forty-six studies (N = 3,290) that examined the outcomes of religious accommodative therapies and nonreligious spirituality therapies. Comparisons on psychological and spiritual outcomes were made to a control condition, an alternate treatment, or a subset of those studies that used a dismantling design (similar in theory and duration of treatment, but including religious contents). Patients in R/S psychotherapies showed greater improvement than those in alternate secular psychotherapies on both psychological (d = .26) and spiritual (d = .41) outcomes. Religiously accommodated treatments outperformed dismantling-design alternative treatments on spiritual (d = .33) but not on psychological outcomes. Clinical examples are provided and therapeutic practices are recommended.

Keywords: psychotherapy; religion; spirituality; therapy relationship; meta-analysis

Chapter.  8723 words. 

Subjects: Clinical Psychology

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