Pinky 1986-2010 died laughing

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“Gallup Polls from 2005 and 2006 show that countries that are more religious tend to have lower suicide rates.

the Philippines has one of the world’s highest religiosity scores (79), Japan has one of the world’s lowest scores (29). Suicide rates in the Philippines are almost 12 times lower than rates in Japan

Does religiosity per se truly affect suicide rates?

Another concern is that countries that are more religious might tend to underreport suicides — because of subpar medical documentation, or the added social stigma suicide carries in countries that are more religious. However, an analysis focusing only on wealthy countries, where documentation of suicide is likely to be excellent, still reveals a robust association between religiosity and national suicide rates.

A final hypothesis is that greater social capital (collective commitment to social well-being) in more religious countries could be responsible for the lower suicide rates observed in these countries. However, if greater social capital explained why higher religiosity is associated with less suicide, one would probably expect to see lower homicide rates in more religious countries. In these data, however, homicide rates were actually somewhat higher in countries that are more religious.”


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