The Effect of Religious Diversity on Religious Belonging and Meaning: The Role of Intellectual Humility

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Abstract

In this article, we examined how ideological diversity affects one’s sense of belonging and meaning in a religious group, as well as how intellectual humility about one’s religious beliefs moderates these relationships. Participants (N = 113) were randomly assigned to imagine themselves attending a religious small group that was ideologically homogeneous or diverse, and then they rated the amount of belonging and meaning they anticipated receiving from the group, as well as their level of intellectual humility. Being in an ideologically diverse small group was negatively associated with belonging and meaning, but intellectual humility moderated these relationships, such that the relationships were weaker at higher levels of intellectual humility. Thus, intellectual humility preserved a sense of meaning and belonging when individuals interacted with ideologically dissimilar others.

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