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Can Religion or Spirituality Help Ward Off Depression?

People of all shapes, sizes, colors and nationalities get depression. There seems to be little rhyme or reason to whom it strikes and when.

Many people swear by certain things to help them keep depression away. Some people use exercise, while others throw themselves more into their work. Others take a daily dose of a herb like St. John’s Wort or fish oil, because of the association these ingredients have had with a reduction in depression in some studies.

But what about religion? Can a strong sense of spirituality or religion help you ward off depression?

6 Comments to
Can Religion or Spirituality Help Ward Off Depression?

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  1. APA now has a journal (Psychology of Religion and Spirituality) for those interested in these areas. Division 36 is another great resource. Every year, at Loyola University Maryland, the Mid Year Conference on Religion and Spirituality ( highlights current research.

  2. strong sense of religion can lead to religious wars and terrorism.Study the life of BUDDHA,how he warded off his depression.

  3. I would imagine a strong belief system and a sense of purpose, both common in those who are religious and/or spiritual, would certainly help ward off depression.

  4. I will not speak for others, as for myself, as a non-believer (religion) I don’t believe that religious spirituality has anything to do with my depression (genetic/health-related, anxiety (genetic). I don’t turn to religion for my mental/emotional nor psycholgical problems. That’s what I have a psychiatrist for. Repressed grief, I believe, might well be the root cause of the physical health problems I have.

  5. So you can replace an affective disorder with a delusion.

    Which is more insane? Feeling bad or believing your imaginary friend rules the universe…

  6. Why is it that an objective writer can’t have anything -positive- to say about religion before some religion-basher will come along to proclaim their beliefs to everyone else? So we can’t talk positively about religion anymore just because you don’t like it?

    @ Thinker, I am a Christian who is -fine- with people who have spiritual beliefs and -fine- with people who do not. I, for one, do not force my beliefs on others. I hope you realize that by declaring others delusional for being spiritual, you are forcing your atheist beliefs on others. You -force- others to see things the way you do. Just like a bible thumper.



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