Monday, April 06, 2009

Benefits of Religious Practice

The report referred to by Kevin in an earlier post is linked below. The report provides a substantial body of evidence on the potential benefits of religion. I agree with Kevin's view of the need for rigorous causal thinking. I am, however, swayed by the argument in the report that religion and related issues are not given enough coverage in papers on well-being and psychological health.


Kevin Denny said...

I have given the article a look though not a thorough one. It is interesting & on the whole well written. However concerns I expressed earlier are as strong as before if no more so. The evidence it surveys points to an association between religious practice & well being but it seems to explicitly assume that the former causes the latter. This is not supported by the data: it is just a correlation. I do not know if it is a representative study of the literature but I was quickly able to find, through Google Scholar, several studies which found no such association.
I find it depressing that medical professors don't know better.

Liam Delaney said...

kevin - your conclusion is too strong here. The report is interesting and well-referenced. Your comments on causality are definitely fair and well-argued but your conclusion seems unfair.

Kevin Denny said...