“Selfish or Substituting Spirituality? Clarifying the Relationship between Spiritual Practice and Political Engagement,” co-authored by Associate Professor of Sociology Jaime Kucinskas, was recently published online by the American Sociological Review.
The article presents a study by Kucinskas and Evan Stewart of the University of Massachusetts-Boston in which they examined the relationship between self-reported spiritual and religious practices and political engagement.
They used public data from the 2020 National Religion and Spirituality Survey to determine whether study participants distinguish spiritual and religious practice as distinct concepts. Using their results, the authors looked at the association between those practices and political behavior.
“Our findings point to considerable social and political differences between self-reported religious and spiritual practitioners,” Kucinskas and Stewart wrote, “and, surprisingly, to higher reported political engagement among spiritual practitioners than one might expect from extant literature on spirituality.”