Tuesday, March 17, 2009

read this article...

Check it out. Then tell me what impact you think this study might have... I have a couple of theories, but I'm saving them for later! ;-)

here's the actual link if you want/need it for some reason: http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2009-03-17-cancer-coping_N.htm?csp=24&RM_Exclude=Juno


BenMc said...

Interesting article. I'm reading a sociology book right now on "What Americans Believe" and this dovetails with that. What I notice is at the bottom of the article they mention minorities often opt for the intensive treatments. In the book I'm reading many things that go along with religion also go along with race -- they say in the article they've controlled for race but I'm not so sure! Also, this gets to the whole question of suffering. For Christians, it's not something to be avoided at all costs. Even if it interferes with communication, etc. There's a book I own and need to read on this by Stanley Hauerwas called suffering presence. In brief: I think it's a real effect, probably smaller than they think, but real.

Geoff said...

hmm... good points. I wonder how much of it is related to factors other than religion... my initial thought was that articles like this make the scientific theories about the "evolution of religion" all the more intriguing, because they indicate that religion (contra Dawkins, et al) may be a beneficial factor in human development rather than a negative "meme."

Of course, I guess that depends on whether one thinks trying to prolong one's life in the face of imminent death is a good or a bad thing. The other side of it could be that religious people have so much invested in the "afterlife" that they have more latent fear and questions, which actually make them less likely to embrace death. Which, of course, would be quite ironic for Christians.