Year of Graduation
Social and Psychological Predictors of Religious Commitment Among Orthodox Christians
Applied Social Psychology
We take in focus the problem of religious fundamentalism and try to evaluate which psychological factors predict adopting religious beliefs as fundamentalistic. The literature showed possible relationship of fundamentalism with right-wing authoritarianism, self-reflection and three personality traits: openness to experience, neuroticism and agreeableness. Every variable was measured with pre-existing scales; fundamentalism scale had to be translated and pre-tested before the main study. The scales were tested on the final sample (N=109) through confirmatory factor analysis. After that, the model combining all the variables and assumed relationships was tested through structural equation modelling in IBM SPSS AMOS. The key relationship was authoritarianism predicting fundamentalism, which was confirmed. Neuroticism and openness to experience were proven to influence fundamentalism, while openness to experience also influences right-wing authoritarianism. This trait was assumed to be a possible moderator between authoritarianism and fundamentalism. Two types of self-reflection showed negative correlation with fundamentalism: systemic reflection and quasi-reflection, which tells us that fundamentalists a) have lower ability to assess themselves in relation to the information from outside; and b) avoid thinking abstractly about the future and the past. Quasi-reflection also showed strong correlation with neuroticism and openness to experience, which had not been hypothesized initially.