Want To Live Longer?
Then Go To Church
A study published by researchers at Yeshiva University and its medical school, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, strongly suggests that regular attendance at religious services reduces the risk of death by approximately 20 percent.
“Psawh!” I hear the rationalists say (They’re rather old-fashioned people, you see). “That’s just the effects of stress reduction and maybe a decent support system of concerned friends at work here.” Really? Think so?
The study adjusted for participation of individuals within communal organizations and group activities that promote a strong social life and enjoyable routines, behaviors known to lead to overall wellness. However, even after controlling for such behavior and other health-related factors, the improvements in morbidity and mortality rates exceeded expectations.
“Interestingly, the protection against mortality provided by religion cannot be entirely explained by expected factors that include enhanced social support of friends or family, lifestyle choices and reduced smoking and alcohol consumption,” said Dr. Schnall, who was lead author of the study.
Now all we need is one of those academic types to come right out and admit that there’s something going on here that he just doesn’t quite understand. Then my day will be complete.
“There is something here that we don’t quite understand. It is always possible that some unknown or unmeasured factors confounded these results,” he added.
Well how ’bout that. A complete day!
Addendum: Dawn Eden sites the same article, and makes a similar observation. She just does it so much better than I! “[T]he press release is of interest not only for what it says about the correlation of public worship with longer life, but also for what it says about the limited worldview of the scientists who conduct such research.”