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Abstract

Contemporary American college students simultaneously express both increased interest in spirituality and declining interest in traditional religion. Recent research recognizes the trend of young adults separating spirituality from religion, but utilizes varied definitions of each term developed by the researchers. This study asks students directly whether and how they differentiate spirituality from religion. The purpose of this article is to examine how undergraduate Catholics attending a Catholic university conceive of themselves as spiritual or religious and the differences, if any, between the two descriptors. The perspectives of 20 young adults of various programs of study and self-described degrees of spirituality and religiousness are herein explored.

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