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Longevity and Spirituality: A Psychophysiological Study

Spivak D., Zakharchuk A., Pavlov A., Spivak I. Longevity and spirituality: a psychophysiological study // International Journal of Psychophysiology. — 2008, Vol. 69, No. 3. P. 287.

Longevity and Spirituality: A Psychophysiological Study

Spivak D. L.*, Zakharchuk A. G.**, Pavlov A. E.***, Spivak I. M.****

* Human Brain Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences

** Municipal Gerontological Medico-Social Centre of St.Petersburg

*** Faculty of Biology and Soil Science, State University of St.Petersburg

**** Institute of Cytology, Russian Academy of Sciences

Psychophysiological state of 18 Ss, aged 78.4 years (σ=5.0), was studied by means of standardized psychological and gerontological inventories, basing on the facilities of the Municipal Gerontological Medico-Social Centre of St. Petersburg.

Strong positive correlation of inner religiosity (by G. W. Allport) with the age of respondents was demonstrated (cf. Table 1, factor 2). Another trend positively linked predisposition to the experience of altered states of consciousness with higher level of general somatic fitness (factor 3). Neurotization which correlated with the assessment of psychological comfort, mood and agility (factor 1), appeared not to be directly linked with reduced life expectancy, although the probability of indirect links between them should be regarded as highly plausible. As a result, positive correlation between longevity and spirituality, the latter comprising both religiosity and alteration of consciousness, was demonstrated.

The study was conducted under general supervision of academician N. P. Bechtereva. It was supported by grant 06-06-80048, issued by Russian Foundation for Basic Research.

Table 1. Results of Factor Analysis of Data on Psychophysological Aspects of Ageing