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A fascinating study in Britain has suggested that those inclined towards religion tend to be happier than atheists or agnostics.
A study presented at the Royal Economic Society’s annual conference in Coventry, Britain, suggested that religion can act as an “insurance policy” against distress.
Although the idea of religious belief as a “fortress” was not new, “this issue of insurance has surprisingly received only limited attention”, the authors of the study were quoted as saying by Daily Mail .
The research used data from across Europe to study the impact of religious belief – both the personal practices related to communal faith and to group rituals and communication stemming from shared conviction – on life satisfaction, as well as attitudes towards government policies.
According to the study, regular churchgoers appeared to cope better with distressful events such as divorce or unemployment.
It concluded that the “stress-buffering” effect varies according to the life event and religious denomination, but “churchgoing and prayer are also associated with greater satisfaction”.
Lead researchers, Professor Andrew Clark and Dr Orsolya Lelkes, also suggested that faith in religion influenced political attitudes, the report said.
Moral codes, practices, values, institutions, tradition, rituals, and scriptures are often associated with the core religious belief, and these may have some overlap with concepts in secular philosophy.
Sources: The Times Of India