Psychology of Religion
Azusa Pacific University
Dr. Brian Eck
January 18, 2002
"Research in Psychology of Religion"

The Scientific Method in Psychology
START: Scientific Theory & Informal Observation
2ND: Scientific Hypotheses (a statement that can be proved or disproved)
3RD: Makes Observation
4TH: Data Collection
5TH: Descriptive Statistics (actual data that is collected)
6TH: Inferential Statistics (if your statistics can be generalized to the world)
7TH: Generalized Implications of your findings
(Steps in italicized mean they are outside the "realm of science")
Research in Psychology of Religion
1 The problem of putting religion into a science is that we are constricting the supernatural to rules that are designed to test the natural world
2 Science aroused in the west because Christians thought the God who created this place was orderly and lawful and it was our duty to understand His creation
a.   Now science has taken God out of it and completely stick to natural laws
b.   They will take the "box analogy" and say all that there is in life is what is in the box
3 They have found that "self-report" research in religion is almost worthless
a.   Peoples beliefs do not correlate with their behaviors
b.   For the minority that does correlate their behaviors with their beliefs is a rather interesting study
4   There is nothing we can study that will establish whether someone is a Christian or in the kingdom of God
a.   All we can study is what is the relationship they have between their life and their faith
b.   What do they participate in and why do they do that