Standard Article

Religion and Psychology

  1. Arthur C. Houts

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0789

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Houts, A. C. 2010. Religion and Psychology. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–2.

Author Information

  1. University of Memphis

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


The relationship between religion and psychology has often been contentious, with religious rejection of secular psychology on the one hand, and psychological rejection of religious experience on the other hand. Religion and psychology have often been in competition over their shared interest in providing an understanding of what it means to be human. As a matter of presupposition, both psychology and religion require some prior philosophical anthropology, and it is at this most basic level that the tensions between the two arise. In the West, the clash between religion and psychology reflects the contradictory Western conceptual traditions of Judeo-Christian subjective engagement versus Greek objective detachment.


  • religion;
  • theology;
  • metaphysics;
  • philosophical anthropology