Cultural religiosity as the moderator of the relationship between affective experience and life satisfaction: A study in 147 countries.

People in different cultures may give different weights to emotional experience when evaluating their lives. In modern secularized cultures, people are more likely to focus on maximizing the experience of positive emotions and minimizing the experience of negative emotions to achieve well-being. In contrast, in traditional religious cultures, people are more likely to use religious standards to evaluate their lives. Therefore, the present study predicted that the frequency of positive and negative affect would be a better predictor of life satisfaction in secular (vs. religious) cultures. A sample of 295,933 participants from 147 countries was used to test this prediction. The data were extracted from the Gallup World Poll. As expected, the results of multilevel modeling showed that the association between affect and life satisfaction was weaker in religious than secular cultures. Therefore, the socioreligious context partly determines the extent to which affective information is relied on in life evaluation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)