Lay conceptualizations of spirituality and religiousness among Jewish Israeli men and women

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In order to clarify the lay conceptualization of spirituality and the overlap between the constructs of spirituality and religiousness, the relations between a multidimensional measure of spirituality and overall measures of spirituality and religiousness were examined. A total of 111 Israeli Jewish men and women responded to the Spiritual Orientation Inventory (SOI), a multidimensional measure of humanistic spirituality, and to single-item overall measures of spirituality and religiousness. For both men and women, all SOI sub-scales were significantly related to spirituality. In contrast, three SOI sub-scales - Altruism, Idealism, and Awareness of the tragic - were not related to religiousness. Regression analysis indicated that for men, spirituality is a more one-dimensional construct strongly associated with the experiential aspects of spirituality. In comparison, women demonstrated a more complex perception of spirituality associated with a variety of intrinsic spiritual values. In addition, for men the overlap between religiousness and spirituality centers on life coherency whereas for women the overlap appears to be more general.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-128
Number of pages22
JournalReview of Religious Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2014


  • Gender differences
  • Religiousness
  • Spirituality


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