God Representation Types Are Associated With Levels of Personality Organization and Christian Religious Orthodox Culture.

Hanneke Schaap-Jonker, N. van der Velde*, Liesbeth Eurelings-Bontekoe, J.M.T. Corveleyn

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

This exploratory study shows that God representation types are associated with levels of personality organization. Among two Dutch samples of psychiatric patients (n = 136) and nonpatients (n = 161), we found associations between the psychotic, borderline, and neurotic personality organizations, and passive-unemotional, negative-authoritarian, and positive-authoritative God representation types, respectively. Both patients and nonpatients reported positive God representations, but only nonpatients and higher-level functioning patients reported an integrated God-object relation. For persons with personality pathology, the relationship with God can be a struggle and might have a defensive and/or compensating function. In addition to personality organization, Christian religious orthodox culture is a statistical predictor of God representations, but not of anger toward God. We offer suggestions for how psychotherapeutic work with God representations might differ for patients with different levels of personality organization
Original languageEnglish
Article number10.1097/NMD.0000000000001363
Pages (from-to)710-719
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Nervous and Mental Disease
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021

Keywords

  • god representations
  • mental health

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