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J Clin Psychol. 2011 Feb;67(2):204-14. doi: 10.1002/jclp.20760.

Religion and spirituality.

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Virginia Commonwealth University, USA.


Many clients highly value religious and spiritual (R/S) commitments, and many psychotherapists have accommodated secular treatments to R/S perspectives. We meta-analyzed 51 samples from 46 studies (N = 3,290) that examined the outcomes of religious accommodative therapies and nonreligious spirituality therapies. Comparisons on psychological and spiritual outcomes were made to a control condition, an alternate treatment, or a subset of those studies that used a dismantling design (similar in theory and duration of treatment, but including religious contents). Patients in R/S psychotherapies showed greater improvement than those in alternate secular psychotherapies both on psychological (d =.26) and on spiritual (d = .41) outcomes. Religiously accommodated treatments outperformed dismantling-design alternative treatments on spiritual (d = .33) but not on psychological outcomes. Clinical examples are provided and therapeutic practices are recommended.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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