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Current Religious News and Events, Religious News Articles.
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Faith-centered tattoos are analyzed in study of university students
With more than a quarter of US adults now having tattoos -- and nearly half of millennials -- only a handful of studies have focused on religious tattoos. But a new study by researchers at Baylor University and Texas Tech University analyzes faith-centered tattoos and is the first to use visual images of them. (2020-02-12)

Religious, moral beliefs may exacerbate concerns about porn addiction
Moral or religious beliefs may lead some people to believe they are addicted to pornography even when their porn use is low or average, according to new research published by the American Psychological Association. (2020-02-06)

Researchers revise timing of Easter island's societal collapse
The prehistoric collapse of Easter Island's monument-building society did not occur as long thought, according to a fresh look at evidence by researchers at four institutions. The decline did not begin until the arrival of Europeans. (2020-02-05)

Religiousness linked to improved quality of life for people with HIV
Adults living with HIV in Washington, D.C., were more likely to feel higher levels of emotional and physical well-being if they attended religious services regularly, prayed daily, felt 'God's presence,' and self-identified as religious or spiritual, according to research published online Jan. 29, 2020, in Psychology of Religion and Spirituality. (2020-01-31)

Openly acknowledging social inequalities
Members of disadvantaged social groups who engage in contact with members of privileged groups are less likely to support social change toward equality, a multinational study by social psychologists at the University of Zurich shows. To reduce this effect, it is important to actively address and acknowledge inequalities in intergroup contacts. (2020-01-29)

Engagement and education key to changing attitudes towards virginity testing
Virginity testing is a complex, culturally mediated practice that is poorly understood by Western clinicians. Although there is published literature on the ethics of 'virginity' testing and on the lack of reliability of a hymen examination to determine 'virginity,' little practical guidance has been published for clinicians who may encounter requests for virginity testing in the clinical setting. (2020-01-21)

Few people consider religious affiliation of hospital they choose
A small minority of Americans surveyed consider the religious affiliation of the hospitals that treat them, but a majority said they didn't want religious doctrine dictating their healthcare choices, according to a study by researchers at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus. (2020-01-02)

Long-acting contraception has proven highly effective but is restricted by some hospitals
Long-acting reversible contraceptives like intrauterine implants have greatly reduced unintended pregnancies and abortions, but government protections allowing religious hospitals to restrict care are limiting access to health care consumers, according to an expert at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus. (2019-12-17)

Frequency of worship, not location, matters more when it comes to being good neighbors
Americans travel farther on average to their worship places than they did a decade ago. But while those who belong to a congregation in their neighborhood attend more often, ''worshipping local'' does not make them feel closer to their neighbors or more satisfied with the neighborhood, according to a new study by researchers at Baylor University and Calvin University. (2019-12-03)

How religion can heighten or help with financial stress
Researchers found that some people experience financial stress due, in part, to their religion's demands on their time and money. Yet, others feel their religious involvement and support of their church community reduces their financial stress. (2019-11-18)

The medieval Catholic church's influence on psychology of Western, industrialized societies
The Western Catholic church's influence on marriage and family structures during the Middle Ages shaped the cultural evolution of the beliefs and behaviors now common among Western Europeans and their cultural descendants, researchers report. (2019-11-07)

First study of how family religious and spiritual beliefs influence end of life care
In the first study to investigate the association of the religious and spiritual beliefs of surrogate decision makers with the end of life decisions they make for incapacitated older adult family members, Regenstrief Institute Research Scientist Alexia Torke, M.D., and theological and scientific colleagues have found that the surrogate's belief in miracles was the main dimension linked to preferences for care of their loved one. (2019-11-04)

Hindu children more apt to echo propaganda that 'Indian equals Hindu'
When it comes to the question of who is a true Indian, Hindu children in the world's largest secular democracy are more likely than their Muslim peers to connect their faith to their national identity, according to new research from the University of California, Berkeley. (2019-11-01)

Research highlights importance of religious vote amid changing social landscape
Canadians who consider religion to be important in their lives were still more likely to vote for the Conservative Party in 2015, finds new research from the University of Waterloo. This religion effect on voting behavior is one of the strongest sociodemographic effects on vote choice in Canada. (2019-10-15)

Research identifies factors influencing how religious identity interacts with workplace
To address gaps in the literature on how employees' religious and work identities interact, a new study reviewed relevant research to help employers support religious identity and reduce conflict in the workplace. (2019-10-08)

Otago study identifies psychology of attraction to religious deities and super-heroes
A new psychological study published by University of Otago, New Zealand, researchers has addressed centuries-old questions about how and why supernatural beings are worshipped. (2019-09-29)

Developed countries may become more religious in 20 years
Researchers from HSE University and RANEPA found that in high-income countries, age, rather than the cohort effect, has more impact on religiosity. They predict that this may have an impact on societal structure in the future. The study was published in Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion. (2019-09-25)

What would Jesus do? Quite possibly, recycle
A team of social scientists and sustainability scientists worked to peel off the layers of understanding about how Christianity and environmentalism mix. (2019-09-23)

Religious hospitals often fail to supply adequate family planning training
Nearly half of all Catholic and other religious hospitals fail to comply with required abortion and family planning training for obstetrics and gynecology residents, putting women at potential risk, according to a new study from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus (2019-09-19)

Economists find mixed values of 'thoughts and prayers'
Christians who suffer from natural and human-caused disasters value thoughts and prayers from religious strangers, while atheists and agnostics believe they are worse off from such gestures. (2019-09-16)

Religion associated with HPV vaccination rate for college women
A survey of female college students finds 25% had not been vaccinated for HPV and religion may be a contributing factor. (2019-08-19)

Uncovering the roots of discrimination toward immigrants
Immigrants are often encouraged to assimilate into their new culture as a way of reducing conflict with their host societies, to appear less threatening to the culture and national identity of the host population. But new research from the Penn Identity and Conflict Lab suggests that cultural integration signaled by following local social norms does not eliminate bias and discrimination toward immigrants when ethno-religious differences are obvious. (2019-07-29)

Islamic values play a significant role in the travel decisions of Muslim tourists
Islamic values are just as important as the destination, quality and value for money for Muslims when choosing a holiday destination, according to a new study by the University of Portsmouth. (2019-06-24)

Ancient pots from Chinese tombs reveal early use of cannabis as a drug
Chemical analysis of several wooden braziers recently excavated from tombs in western China provides some of earliest evidence for ritual cannabis smoking, researchers report. The study suggests that smoking cannabis for ritual and religious activities was practiced in western China by at least 2,500 years ago. (2019-06-12)

Why parents should teach their kids to give
Teaching children how to appropriately give money away can help them develop valuable financial skills such as budgeting, and it may also contribute to their well-being later in life, according to a study led by the University of Arizona. (2019-05-28)

Initially threatened by change, people adapt to societal diversity over time
With time, people can adapt to societal diversity and actually benefit from it, according to a study led by researchers at Princeton University and the University of Oxford. Those in power especially set the tone for integrating people into a new society. (2019-05-23)

Meditation needs more research: Study finds 25% suffer unpleasant experiences
More than a quarter of people who regularly meditate have had a 'particularly unpleasant' psychological experience related to the practice, including feelings of fear and distorted emotions, a UCL-led study has found. (2019-05-09)

Regenstrief, IU Health study helps chaplains provide proactive care to families in crises
A new model developed and implemented by the Regenstrief Institute and Indiana University Health provides chaplains with a framework to deliver better care to families and other surrogate decision makers during health emergencies. The model was designed to help chaplains provide proactive, semi-structured spiritual care to meet family members' needs while being responsive to each person's spiritual or religious preferences. The study describing the model and its implementation is published in the current issue of Journal of Health Care Chaplaincy. (2019-04-30)

New in the Hastings Center Report, March-April 2019
The federal right-to-try law's effect on the FDA, the gamification of science, how the Conscience and Religious Freedom Division is changing health care, and more in the latest issue. (2019-04-25)

Experiences of 'ultimate reality' or 'God' confer lasting benefits to mental health
In a survey of thousands of people who reported having experienced personal encounters with God, Johns Hopkins researchers report that more than two-thirds of self-identified atheists shed that label after their encounter, regardless of whether it was spontaneous or while taking a psychedelic. (2019-04-23)

Power to the people: How everyday acts of defiance can shape and change markets
Subtle, hidden and everyday acts of resistance and defiance by people with limited resources could have an impact on markets in societies where state and religion is all-powerful. These are the key findings of a new study, led by the University of Portsmouth, which shows consumers and individuals can help markets to evolve in societies where they cannot freely and openly participate in them. (2019-04-15)

People with a sense of oneness experience greater life satisfaction
People who believe in oneness -- the idea that everything in the world is connected and interdependent -- appear to have greater life satisfaction than those who don't, regardless of whether they belong to a religion or don't, according to research published by the American Psychological Association. (2019-04-11)

People turn to consumerism to confront problems, grief and feelings
People are increasingly turning to commercial settings as outlets for their emotions, confronting problems, grief and feelings. (2019-04-11)

Mental health stigma, fueled by religious belief, may prevent latinos from seeking help
Religious and cultural beliefs may discourage many Latinos in the United States from seeking treatment for depression and other mental health disorders, a Rutgers University-New Brunswick study finds. Mental health providers and researchers should therefore engage with faith-based organizations and other community venues to help them address the stigma associated with mental illness and to encourage people to seek help, said Susan Caplan, an assistant professor at the Rutgers School of Nursing. (2019-04-01)

Rise of religion pre-dates Incas at Lake Titicaca
An ancient group of people made ritual offerings to supernatural deities near the Island of the Sun in Lake Titicaca, Bolivia, about 500 years earlier than the Incas, according to an international team of researchers. The team's findings suggest that organized religion emerged much earlier in the region than previously thought. (2019-04-01)

Complex societies gave birth to big gods, not the other way around
Big data analyses by an international research team, including a member of the Complexity Science Hub Vienna, suggest that moralizing gods are rather the product than the drivers of social complexity. The results are published in the current issue of the journal Nature. (2019-03-20)

Former inmates need social supports to maintain mental health, Rutgers study says
Men released from prison who receive social, community and spiritual support have better mental health, according to a study by researchers at Rutgers School of Public Health. (2019-03-19)

Cross-regional study of Russian teachers' attitudes towards cultural diversity
Many countries today face the difficulties of teaching kids of religious and ethnic minorities. Schools are especially important in general adaptation processes. (2019-03-15)

Study shows most Catholic hospitals don't advertise religious restrictions on health care
In a survey of Catholic hospitals throughout the country, researchers at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus found many did not advertise their religious affiliation and the majority did not explain how that affiliation results in health care restrictions. (2019-03-15)

Disclosure of religious identity, health care practices on Catholic hospital websites
Some patients seek care at Catholic hospitals but others may not because aspects of reproductive and end-of-life care can be limited by ethical and religious directives for Catholic hospitals based on the church's moral teachings. This research letter analyzed the websites of 646 hospitals listed in the Catholic Health Care Directory to see whether the hospitals described their religious identity and associated health care practices. (2019-03-15)

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