Cold cash warms a lonely soul : reminders of money moderate the effects of social coldness on anthropomorphism of god
Huan, Ser Fee
Date of Issue2016
School of Humanities and Social Sciences
Past work reveals that on one hand, loneliness heightens the motivation to seek out social connection by promoting social sensitivity and the tendency to perceive nonhuman agents to be humanlike (anthropomorphize). On the other hand, money provides a sense of self-sufficiency that dampens the desire for social connection. Because religious figures (e.g. God) are commonly anthropomorphized in everyday lives, this study examined the relationship among loneliness, the tendency to selectively attend to images of anthropomorphic religious agents, and the moderator role of money. As expected, participants primed with social exclusion responded slower than socially included participants on modified Stroop reaction trials when images of anthropomorphic figures preceded, but not in trials with images of non-anthropomorphic religious symbols. Contrary to our hypothesis, there were no indications that money moderated this phenomenon. This study gives support to the impact of loneliness on anthropomorphic behaviors and paves way for a possible new direction for money priming studies. Practical implications for religious practices are discussed.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University