People across cultures are frequently exposed to notions related to god(s) or religion. Recent experimental work has shown reliable connections between religious concepts and prosocial behaviors. Along this line, I have conducted research on how religious concepts boost self-control – the basic regulatory capacity that people have for fending off temptations and bringing themselves in line with social standards. Across three experiments, subtle exposure to religious ideas was shown to make people better at delaying gratification, enduring an unsavory tasting task, and overriding habitual impulses. Taken together, the findings attested to the causal role of religious concepts on enhancing self-control. The enhancing effects on self-control may offer an overarching explanation for the cognitive and behavioral outcomes triggered by religious concepts. Practical implications and future directions will be discussed.
P.S: The seminar will be held in English.