Exploring the association of sense of coherence, and spiritual and religious beliefs in a rural population group on the island of Crete, Greece

Stefanaki, Ioanna N. and Shea, Sue and Linardakis, Manolis and Symvoulakis, Emmanouil K. and Wynyard, Robin and Lionis, Christos (2014) Exploring the association of sense of coherence, and spiritual and religious beliefs in a rural population group on the island of Crete, Greece. The International Journal of Psychiatry in Medicine, 47 (3). pp. 207-230. ISSN 0091-2174

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Abstract

OBJECTIVES/AIM: This article reports the results of an observation study, aimed at exploring an association between spirituality, religiousness, and sense of coherence in a population group residing in a rural area of Crete, Greece.

STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: The study was conducted during the period 2007-2009. Subjects aged 65 years and older (n = 118) living in two remote and rural villages in the Heraklion county (Crete) were eligible. Eighty-nine people (51 women and 38 men) participated. Demographic data were obtained, and all participants were asked to complete the Greek version of the self-reported Royal Free Interview for Spiritual and Religious Beliefs, and the Sense of Coherence Scale.

RESULTS: Most participants reported strong religious beliefs and this was found to be related with increased age. Widowed participants expressed greater religiousness and spirituality (p = 0.029). The total score for Sense of Coherence was negatively correlated with gender (women have lower scores, p < 0.05), marital status (widows presented lower scores, p < 0.001), and increased age. A strong positive correlation of the Sense of Coherence score with the Spiritual Scale as measured by three questions of the Royal Free Interview was also identified (p = 0.039).

CONCLUSIONS: The impact of gender and marital status seem to be emerging determinants in defining sense of coherence among inhabitants of rural Crete. The positive association between religious/spiritual beliefs and sense of coherence deserves further attention to promote a multidimensional approach in its study.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Health and Education
Item ID: 17983
Depositing User: Sue Shea
Date Deposited: 07 Oct 2015 13:52
Last Modified: 07 Nov 2017 12:35
URI: http://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/17983

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