Seeking but Not Sealing the Deal: The Exploratory Reality of Identity Status and Spirituality in Emerging Adulthood
The main part of identity exploration is now widely considered to occur in emerging adulthood (Arnett, 2004). Furthermore, religion and spirituality have been historically and currently viewed as a rich context for identity development (Erikson, 1965; King, 2003). Current research suggests a multidimensional model of spirituality (transcendence, fidelity, and contribution), which emphasizes bi-directional relations between individual and context (King, Kim, Furrow, & Clardy, 2017). The relationship between individual and context is congruent with the processes of exploration and commitment, which are highlighted in Marcia’s (1966) identity status model as essential to identity formation. The current study examined the spirituality and identity status of emerging adults who are actively engaged in religious communities. It was hypothesized that identity status would be positively associated with spirituality in this population, and thus transcendence, contribution, and fidelity would significantly differ by identity status. As the majority of the sample was found to be in ideological or interpersonal identity moratorium, the hypotheses could not be directly addressed, but correlational analyses supported the hypotheses.
PSYD in Clinical Psychology
King, Pamela Ebstyne
Spirituality, Young adults, Identity
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