• Irina Sergeevna Bulanova Volgograd State University
  • Aleksandr Yurievich Chernov Volgograd State University
Keywords: religious norms, structure and functions of religious norms, believers, normative religiosity, diffuse religiosity


The paper understands the religious norms as the personal representations of the ordinary religious consciousness of the correct behavior and judgments based on the counter-intuitivism. The authors emphasize the socio-psychological aspect of norms, which is manifested through their regulating function of the social, group and individual behavior in everyday life, within the general context of the social situations. The paper presents the qualitative psychological study of the content and functions of the religious norms of the believers with the normative and diffuse religiosity. The main method of data collection was the semi-structured group interviews. The sample of the respondents included the orthodox churchgoers who make up the parish (the believers with the normative religiosity) and the believers who identify themselves with the Orthodox confession but are not the churchmen (the diffuse believers). As a result of the conducted qualitative research, the content and the functions of three types of religious norms of ordinary religious consciousness are revealed: the norm of responsibility, the norm of social interaction and the norms of interpersonal interaction. The paper presents some significant differences in the representation of religious norms among the believers with the normative and diffuse religiosity. In general, the authors identified that the religious norms of the believers with the diffuse religiosity are a socio-cultural tool for constructing and maintaining the positive self-concept. For the Orthodox believers, the religious norms have the ideological, conceptual functions; they perform as well the function of self-presentation and provide the group identity allowing distinguishing between “ins and outs” within the system of the inter-confessional interaction. In both cases, the psychological task is to identify the true motivation of behavior, the degree of indoctrination of a religious norm, as well as its relationship with the self-concept components.

Author Biographies

Irina Sergeevna Bulanova, Volgograd State University

PhD (Psychology), assistant professor of Chair of Psychology

Aleksandr Yurievich Chernov, Volgograd State University

Doctor of Sciences (Psychology), professor of Chair of Psychology


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Psychological Sciences