Spirituality and psychological pain: the mediating role of social support

Trever Dangel, Jon R. Webb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Spirituality is a multifaceted construct, and often studied as a one- or two-dimensional variable. Recent work has resulted in the development of the RiTE model of spirituality. While preliminarily supported as a useful approach to measuring spirituality, little is known regarding its associations with other outcomes. Past studies have shown inverse associations between spirituality and psychological distress, which appears to be partially a function of social support derived from spiritual beliefs or practices. As such, the present study tested the relationship between the RiTE dimensions and psychache as mediated by multiple types of social support. Parallel mediation results from an undergraduate sample (N = 1994) showed that all three RiTE dimensions were indirectly associated with psychache via multiple forms of social support. Ritualistic and existential spirituality also displayed direct associations with psychache. Implications of these findings are discussed in the context of past literature, applicable theoretical constructs, and treatment considerations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)246-259
Number of pages14
JournalMental Health, Religion and Culture
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 16 2017


  • Spirituality
  • psychache
  • social support


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