Cognitive dissonance between religious and secular social attitudes
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AbstractThe initial finding of the study, which served as the basis for the exploration of cognitive dissonance between religious and secular behavioral norms, was revealed in a tendency of the majority of religious students to accept behavioral norms, attitudes and believes (concerning interpersonal relationships and reproduction-related ethical issues) which are not supported by Orthodox Christian Church viewpoint and teachings. However, certain cognitive and value system consistency appeared to exist: the intensity of religiousness was related to lower degrees of secular norms approval. It has been found that religious and nonreligious subjects differ significantly in their preference of the strategy used to maintain balance between dissonant religious and secular attitudes- in 3 out of 4 issues considered in the study. Religious subjects most frequently chose relativism strategy, claiming that some specific exceptions from a general rule or standpoint do not necessarily depreciate it, while nonreligious subjects most frequently chose dualistic viewpoint that principally separated and restricted domains of reasoning on spiritual and worldly issues, making them psychologically irrelevant to one another.