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J Relig Health. 2015 Feb;54(1):76-86. doi: 10.1007/s10943-013-9735-9.

Do patients with chronic pain diseases believe in guardian angels: even in a secular society? A cross-sectional study among German patients with chronic diseases.

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Institute of Integrative Medicine, Faculty of Health, Witten/Herdecke University, Gerhard-Kienle-Weg 4, 58313, Herdecke, Germany,


We intended to analyze whether patients with chronic diseases believe in guardian angels (GdA) as a coping resource. In a cross-sectional survey, we analyzed data from 576 German patients with chronic diseases (mean age 51.3 ± 15.4 years). We found that 56 % of the patients often or even regularly believed in GdA, with significantly more women than men believing. Particularly interesting was the fact that 38 % of patients who were identified as neither religious nor spiritual (R-S-) believed in GdAs. This belief may indicate that patients are interested in bridging the gap between the concrete struggle to manage illness and non-rational/transcendent realms.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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