Basic Dimensions of Religiousness and Dispositional Forgiveness: The Mediating Role of Religiously Motivated Forgiveness

Keywords: religiosity, dispositional forgiveness, religiously motivated forgiveness


Forgiveness could be regarded as one of the most important moral imperatives across various religions. Although numerous studies have confirmed the hypothesis that religious people tend to be more forgiving, there is still an open question as to which dimensions of religiosity are responsible for this tendency and whether religious people equally tend to forgive others, but also themselves, and feel being forgiven by God. The present study investigated the associations between religiosity and dispositional forgiveness using the basic dimensions of religiousness model (including cognitive, emotional, moral, and social dimensions of religiosity) and multifaceted measurement of forgiveness (self-forgiveness, forgiveness of others, divine forgiveness, and religiously motivated forgiveness). The study involved 427 individuals who identified themselves as religious (71% women). The results showed weak positive correlations between dimensions of religiousness and dispositional selfforgiveness, moderate associations with dispositional forgiveness of others and religiously motivated forgiveness, and strong associations with dispositional divine forgiveness. Structural equation modeling demonstrated that when controlled for covariations between dimensions of religiousness and dimensions of forgiveness, the behaving (morality) dimension of forgiveness predicted dispositional forgiveness of others and divine forgiveness. Religiously motivated forgiveness mediated between the believing (meaning) and behaving dimensions of religiousness, and dispositional forgiveness.


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