chapter
10 Pages

Charting a Course for 21st Century Studies of Late Life Religiousness and Spirituality

The study of religion and aging like the study of health behaviors has focused on the potential benefits of this domain on the physical and emotional well-being of older persons. In order to test these potential benefits, numerous scales have been devised to measure its effects. An excellent example of this can be found in 'Multidimensional Measurement of Religiousness/Spirituality for Use in Health Research' published by the Fetzer Institute. Weber's theory allows us to understand religion as a specific class of belief systems without requiring us to assume that specific religious systems must share the same interpretations of the theodicy of bad fortune. One could argue that secular ideologies such as socialism are unlike belief systems we usually consider religious because the truths of such ideologies can be tested whereas religious claims of an afterlife cannot be subjected to scientific investigation.