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Religion & Attachment James A. Van Slyke Psyc 450.

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Presentation on theme: "Religion & Attachment James A. Van Slyke Psyc 450."— Presentation transcript:

1 Religion & Attachment James A. Van Slyke Psyc 450

2 Konrad Lorenz Ethologist Baby goslings will imprint the first thing they see Lorenz was able to imprint himself as the parent of the goslings Instinctual pattern of behavior Forms early bond between parent and offspring

3 Harry Harlow Similar imprinting mechanism in rhesus monkeys Young monkeys prefer cloth mother to wire mother for security and comfort Will forgo food in order to gain security Provides a safe base to explore the world Suggests an important instinctual system for attachment

4 Attachment Theory John Bowlby Being in relationship is a primary part of being human Dependency is a normal part of being human A good attachment figure will provide a safe base from which to engage the world Gives us confidence, purpose, security Two main components to a secure bond Emotional accessibility Responsiveness

5 Attachment Theory Mary Ainsworth Worked in Uganda testing relationships between mothers and children Tried to assess the different types of attachment relationships Strange Situation experiment Experimental situation used to assess attachment

6 Four Attachment Styles Measured on Two Dimensions Anxiety Ambivalent or inconsistent care Avoidance Anticipate rejection or retributive behavior from others 1) Fearful-avoidant High on both anxiety and avoidance Negative perceptions of self and other

7 Four Attachment Styles 2) Dismissing Avoidant Low on anxiety; high on avoidance Positive image of self, negative image of others 3) Preoccupied High on anxiety; low on avoidance Negative image of self; positive image of others 4) Secure Low on anxiety and avoidance Positive image of self and other

8 Concepts of God as Parent Ana-Maria Rizzuto (1979) Birth of the Living God God as object representation of parental figure Qualitative study of her clinical patients Questionnaires Drawing pictures of faces Analysis of Clinical Sessions

9 Daniel – Rizzuto's Client

10 Internal Working Model (IWM) Attachment experiences coalesce into an internal working model of attachment Schema which specifies set of expectations and behaviors in relationships Effects adolescent relationships Important role in pair bonding and love

11 Internal Working Model

12 Lee Kirkpatrick God is a representation that matches relational expectations of the IWM Securely attached individuals experience God Loving Less Distant Less Controlling Persons turn to God for security and comfort as attachment figure in prayer

13 Internal Working Model

14 Attachment Hypotheses Correspondence Hypothesis similarity between attachment expectations about parental or romantic figures and expectations about God. individuals with secure attachment styles should demonstrate a similar security in terms of their relationship to God

15 Attachment Hypotheses Compensation Hypothesis attachment expectations about God may be used to compensate for a lack of attachment to parental or romantic figures. Attachment to God or religion may be used to manage anxiety for persons with insecure attachment styles and may influence more dramatic forms of religious conversion

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