The Association Between Grief and Afterlife Beliefs Among Bereaved Individuals: The Moderating Role of Culture
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The present study investigated the relationship between reward and punishment afterlife beliefs and grief between an individualistic (Germany) and collectivistic culture (Turkey) among bereaved individuals. Two hundred ninety respondents from Germany (147) and Turkey (143) completed the Prolonged Grief Disorder and the Afterlife Expectation Belief scale. It was expected that reward afterlife belief had a positive association with grief, and punishment afterlife belief a negative association with grief, and that these associations would be stronger in the individualistic culture compared to the collectivistic culture. The findings showed that there was no relationship between afterlife beliefs and grief. There was a significant three-way interaction between grief, afterlife beliefs, and culture. However, the way in which the relationship between the afterlife beliefs and grief appeared to be different from what was hypothesized. It was found that the pattern of grief levels within the individualistic culture was opposite from the collectivistic culture. Results, future research suggestions, and limitations are discussed.