Religious Schemata and “Spirituality”

  • Heinz StreibEmail author
  • Ralph W. HoodJr.
  • Constantin Klein


This chapter presents new perspectives for understanding “spirituality” that emerge from its relation with religious styles and schemata in the data of the Bielefeld-based Cross-cultural Study on “Spirituality.” ANOVA results with our focus groups indicate that respondents who self-identify as “more spiritual than religious” in both the USA and Germany have lower scores on truth of texts and teachings (ttt), a subscale of the Religious Schema Scale (RSS); still lower on ttt, however, are the respondents who self-identify as “neither religious nor spiritual” or as “atheists ” or “non-theists.” Results further indicate that self-identification as “spiritual” (“more spiritual atheist /non-theists” excluded) is associated with a preference for xenosophia/ inter-religious dialog (xenos). Religious schema groups, which were constructed according to exclusively high agreement with either ttt, ftr, or xenos, profile the relation of the religious schema ta to “spirituality” and “religion” further and confirm the relation of “spirituality” with dialogical, xenosophic attitudes. Finally, regression and mediation analyses using structural equation modelling show that ttt predicts the self-attribution “religious” stronger than the self-attribution “spiritual,” while xenos for most respondents predicts the self-attribution “spiritual,” rather than the self-attribution “religious.” The religious schema ta have strong effects in predicting and mediating the predictions on self-rated “religion” and, more important for our project, on self-rated “spirituality.”


Spirituality Religious schema Religious style Openness Mysticism 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Heinz Streib
    • 1
    Email author
  • Ralph W. HoodJr.
    • 2
  • Constantin Klein
    • 1
  1. 1.University of BielefeldBielefeldGermany
  2. 2.University of TennesseeChattanoogaUSA

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