Papers from the International Association for Cross-Cultural Psychology Conferences

Publication Date

2014

Abstract

Cross-cultural suicide research on spiritual faith as a protective factor in youth is limited. The aim of this study is to examine spiritual faith as a predictor of passive suicidal ideation in a racially and religiously diverse sample of college-aged youth. Participants (N = 243) completed self-report instruments to assess suicidality, social support, reasons for living as well as existential and religious well-being. Over 50% of the sample reported identifying with a racial group including Asian, Hispanic and Black. Approximately 81% of participants reported they had spiritual beliefs (N = 196) representing a variety of religions, including Catholicism, Judaism and Islam. Analyses of variance were used to assess any mean group differences for race, gender and having a religious affiliation using each of the predictor variables. Although racial group differences were not found significant, the analysis yielded significant results for gender, where females reported more reasons for living than males. And for those with religious affiliation, participants reported higher levels of social support, religious well-being and reasons for living. In the final regression model, over and above the influence of gender and religious affiliation, positive faith-based beliefs along with social support was associated to lower levels of passive ideation. Implications of findings and future research are also discussed.

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