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Home Personal Goals: A New Approach in Studying Religious Motivation


Lect. univ. dr. Anca MUSTEA
Western University „Vasile Goldiş” of Arad
Phone: 0257/250609
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Teodor Călin BABA
Western University „Vasile Goldiş” of Arad
Asist. univ. dr. Oana NEGRU
„Babeş-Bolyai” University, Cluj-Napoca

ABSTRACT. In order to understand what makes people engage in religious beliefs and behaviors, it is necessary to study their religious motivation. As there are many controversies concerning the intrinsic-extrinsic religious orientation, alternative ways of studying religious motivation need to be developed. The present research investigates the possibility of studying religious motivation through an appraisal of personal religious goals. Using a mixed methodology, a taxonomy of religious goals is constructed, which includes: personal development goals, relinquishment / fasting goals, goals regarding one’s relation to God, and goals oriented towards others. A positive correlation between the number of personal religious goals and intrinsic religious orientation is highlighted by the results of the present research. Also, our research points out a significant correlation between intrinsic and extrinsic religious orientations. This finding suggests that the two dimensions are not mutually exclusive, as initially assumed by Allport (1950, 1966).

Key words: religious motivation, personal goals, religious goals, daily religious experience, meaning

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