Since the time scientific discoveries had proven some religious dogmas to be flawed, humanity became divided in two opposite camps: believers and atheists. Though religion and following its dogmas is not equal to the faith in God, by majority, people still tend either to concede to divine forces, or to explain the state of the Universe with the laws of nature, physics, or evolution; compromises are rare. At the same time, believers (regardless of their confession) seem to be different from atheists in terms of the positive effects they experience due to having faith in divinity.
Perhaps one of the most important and miraculous effects of faith in divine powers is that believers display increased longevity, lower blood pressure, and improved mental health, compared to those who have no faith in God (Liberty Magazine). In particular, according to a nationwide study held in the United States between 1987 and 1995, believers enjoyed an average of seven additional years of life; they also had fewer chances to have hypertension, and manifested lower rates of depression and anxiety.
Faith in divinity changes people’s attitude towards life in general, themselves, and other people. In particular, believers tend to be more optimistic; they often expect assistance from higher powers, and this gives them strength and hope to undertake life difficulties with dignity and endurance (CAFSurveys). Psychologists emphasize that such an approach allows people to pay less attention to the negative sides of life without ignoring them: fortunes and beneficial opportunities are seen as divine help, whereas difficulties and problems are faced with persistence and a hope for the best.
Being a believer not only effects an individuals’ health or mental well-being, but also their social life. According to a study conducted by the Grey Matter Research team, when asked about religion’s impact on the decrease of amounts of crime and poverty in society in general, or the decline in rates of violence, 45, 41, and 39 percent of respondents respectively thought religion has a positive impact on these processes in terms of regulating and minimizing them (Grey Matter).
Faith in divinity, regardless of a religion, is able to cause surprising positive effects on its bearers. Regardless of what religion people belong to, they experience the same benefits from having faith. In particular, believers have longer lives, lower blood pressure, and lower rates of anxiety and depression. They also tend to hope for the best even in complicated life situations, and face difficulties with persistence and optimism. In addition, religion has a regulative and minimizing effect on such social phenomena as violence, crime, and poverty. Hence, being a believer seems to grant people with extra benefits without extra effort.
Gow, Haven B. “Religious Faith Promotes Well-being.” Liberty Magazine. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Mar. 2014. <http://www.libertymagazine.org/article/religious-faith-promotes-well-being>.
“What Difference Does Christianity Make.” Grey Matter. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Mar. 2014. <http://www.greymatterresearch.com/index_files/Impact.htm>.
“Attitude is Everything.” CAFSurveys. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Mar. 2014. <http://www.chrisasfakesurveys.org>.
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