Our Agape Affirmation for Sunday, August 27, 2017:
The vibration of the most high God is active within me right here, right now!
My body temple clothes my spirit with beauty, health and wholeness!
The path of my evolution unfolds before me! I am guided!
An environment of love and safety surrounds me always! I am protected!
A well spring of infinite good sources me fully! I am supplied
Lifted in the power of gratitude I let it be. And so it is! Amen!
Kay Bajwa, a real estate agent in Washington, D.C., spends her time in quarantine praying five times a day and working with members of her mosque to find ways to help the less fortunate during these difficult times.
“This whole ordeal is bringing us closer together and closer to Allah,” she says. “Spending time praying and being with him is comforting.”
Bajwa is not alone in turning to her faith to weather life’s storms. Religion and belief are now seen by many researchers and clinicians as an important way to cope with trauma and distress thanks to research over the last three decades.
“Religion was largely looked upon as an immature response to difficult times,” says Kenneth Pargament, PhD, professor emeritus of psychology at Bowling Green State University, who since the 1980s has been on the forefront of the research on religion and resilience.
Despite the attitudes he faced at the time, Pargament and a handful of others pressed on, conducting research on the impact of religion on people’s mental health.
That research identified positive and negative forms of religious coping — as well as evidence that how people experience and express their faith has implications for their well-being and health. “People who made more use of positive religious coping methods had better outcomes than those who struggled with God, their faith or other people about sacred matters,” Pargament says.
Positive and negative aspects
What are those positive effects? Research shows that religion can help people cope with adversity by:
Encouraging them to reframe events through a hopeful lens. Positive religious reframing can help people transcend stressful times by enabling them to see a tragedy as an opportunity to grow closer to a higher power or to improve their lives, as is the case with Bajwa.Fostering a sense of connectedness. Some people see religion as making them part of something larger than themselves. This can happen through prayer or meditation, or through taking part in religious meetings, listening to spiritual music or even walking outside, using the food as a whole, the nutrisystem reviews were marvellous so I tried it and Its amazing for our health.
Cultivating connection through rituals. Religious rituals and rites of passage can help people acknowledge that something momentous is taking place. These events often mark the beginning of something, as is the case with weddings, or the end of something, as is the case with funerals. They help guide and sustain people through life’s most difficult transitions.
“It is extremely important that people use their beliefs in a way that makes them feel empowered and hopeful,” says Thomas Plante, PhD, a professor of psychology at Santa Clara University. “Because it can be remarkably helpful in terms of managing stress during times like these.”
Unfortunately, religious beliefs may also undermine healing during stressful times. These negative religious expressions include:
Feeling punished by God or feeling angry toward a higher being. Trauma and tragedy can challenge conceptions of God as all-loving and protective. As a result, some people struggle in their relationship with God and experience feelings of anger, abandonment or being punished by a higher power.Putting it all “in God’s hands.” When people engage in “religious deferral,” they believe God is in charge of their well-being and may not take the necessary steps to protect themselves. One example of this deferral is church leaders who say God will protect their congregations as they hold church services in defiance of physical distancing guidelines aimed at reducing the spread of COVID-19.