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Associations Between Religious Orientation and Varieties of Sexual Experience

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This study examined associations between religious orientation, newly discovered sexual dimensions of personality, and other sexual desires. All participants (n = 161) completed measures of religious orientation, sociosexuality, seven sexual personality dimensions, short-term and long-term mating desires, and mate-poaching behavior. Participants also completed scales assessing social desirability and the Big Five personality factors. Intrinsic religious orientation was positively associated with more restricted sexuality and desire (i.e., decreased sociosexuality, less desire for a large number of sex partners across time). Extrinsic religious orientation was positively associated with more unrestricted sexuality description and desire (i.e., increased sociosexuality and mate poaching; decreased sexual restraint and relationship exclusivity). Both religious orientations accounted for unique variation in sexual dimensions of the self when gender, socially desirable responding, and the Big Five personality factors were statistically controlled. As such, multidimensional measures of religiosity could be theoretically important to include in future scientific research on sexuality and personal relationships.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Baylor University, Waco, USA 2: Bradley University, USA

Publication date: 2003-09-01

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