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J Relig Health. 2009 Jun;48(2):125-45. doi: 10.1007/s10943-009-9243-0. Epub 2009 Mar 17.

"And let us make us a name": reflections on the future of the religion and health field.

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Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA.


After years of marginality, research on religion and health is entering the academic mainstream. Scholarship on this topic has evolved into a large, productive field. As in any emerging field, there are competing visions for what the field should be about and what research questions should be pursued. Different opinions exist as to which constructs should be researched. Words like religion, spirituality, faith, and prayer, and health, healing, medicine, and healthcare, imply different things. The study of their various interconnections can thus take myriad forms. This article argues for a welcoming approach open to the widest range of research subjects.

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