The Psychology of Religion

Annual Review of Psychology

Vol. 54:377-402 (Volume publication date February 2003)
First published online as a Review in Advance on August 6, 2002


This chapter discusses progress in the psychology of religion by highlighting its rapid growth during the past 25 years. Recent conceptual and empirical developments are described, with an emphasis on the cognitive and affective basis of religious experience within personality and social psychology. Religion and spirituality as domains of study, as well as being common and important process variables that touch a large portion of human experience, are highlighted. Movement away from the previously dominant measurement paradigm is noted, and particularly promising directions suggestive of an emerging interdisciplinary paradigm are described.