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The Structure of religious concepts in Japan and the U.S. and its effect on happiness : Universal religiosity as suggested by a commonality between the two countries

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Other Title
  • 日米の宗教概念の構造とその幸福度への効果 : 両国の共通性が示唆する普遍宗教性
  • ニチベイ ノ シュウキョウ ガイネン ノ コウゾウ ト ソノ コウフクド エ ノ コウカ リョウコク ノ キョウツウセイ ガ シサ スル フヘン シュウキョウセイ

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Abstract

A survey of almost 1400 people in the U.S. and Japan was carried out amongst religious believers and non-believers. They were asked to what extent they agreed or disagreed with one hundred concepts concerning religion; more than non-believers, believers agreed with ninety of these concepts. There were some unexpected and remarkable common points: the "Vitalistics Salvation" was believed in both countries; and deviations of belief from authentic dogmas were also found. Furthermore, we found a common structure consisting of six groups of concepts: 1. faith in a personal god; 2. religious norms; 3. action to transcendence; 4. a great life, and the soul; 5. this-worldly benefit; and 6. control of emotions. The groups are integrated into two meta-factors: practical/exoteric and ontological/esoteric. It is the practical/exoteric meta-factor only that affects happiness.

Journal

  • Religion and Society

    Religion and Society 17 (0), 47-66, 2011

    The Japanese Association for the Study of Religion and Society

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