Portraits of American Life Study
Hosted by The ARDA
The PALS seeks to understand the impact of religion in everyday life, and ultimately the connections between religious change and other forms of change among diverse individuals and families over the course of their lives.
Results & Summaries

Religious Guidance/Religious Authority

  All frequencies weighted by PAWT2


Please tell me whether you strongly agree, somewhat agree, neither agree nor disagree, somewhat disagree, or strongly disagree with each of the following statements. I definitely believe in God. (RA_1)
TOTAL%
-4) Don't know3.1
1) Strongly agree218083.6
2) Somewhat agree1947.4
3) Neither agree nor disagree963.7
4) Somewhat disagree532
5) Strongly disagree813.1
Missing3 
TOTAL2607100.0
God is not a personal being, but more like an impersonal spiritual force. (RA_2)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused9.3
-4) Don't know532
1) Strongly agree77629.8
2) Somewhat agree49218.9
3) Neither agree nor disagree34713.3
4) Somewhat disagree1827
5) Strongly disagree74928.7
Missing3 
TOTAL2608100.0
It doesn't much matter what I believe so long as I am a good person. (RA_3)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused4.2
-4) Don't know15.6
1) Strongly agree82731.7
2) Somewhat agree54721
3) Neither agree nor disagree2298.8
4) Somewhat disagree29111.2
5) Strongly disagree69526.6
Missing3 
TOTAL2608100.0
I feel God has called me to the particular line of work I am in. (RA_4)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused3.1
-4) Don't know17.7
1) Strongly agree59925.7
2) Somewhat agree46319.9
3) Neither agree nor disagree62626.9
4) Somewhat disagree2319.9
5) Strongly disagree39116.8
Missing281 
TOTAL2330100.0
The founder of Islam, Muhammad, was the holy prophet of God. (RA_5)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused16.6
-4) Don't know1827
1) Strongly agree1254.8
2) Somewhat agree1967.5
3) Neither agree nor disagree107141.1
4) Somewhat disagree1646.3
5) Strongly disagree85432.7
Missing3 
TOTAL2608100.0
Jesus Christ physically rose from the dead. (RA_5A)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused3.1
-4) Don't know411.6
1) Strongly agree163962.9
2) Somewhat agree28310.9
3) Neither agree nor disagree40615.6
4) Somewhat disagree903.5
5) Strongly disagree1455.6
Missing3 
TOTAL2607100.0
I have experienced a supernatural miracle, an event that could not have happened without the intervention of God or a spiritual force. (RA_6)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused10.4
-4) Don't know261
1) Strongly agree86333.1
2) Somewhat agree48518.6
3) Neither agree nor disagree51819.9
4) Somewhat disagree1736.6
5) Strongly disagree53320.4
Missing3 
TOTAL2608100.0
An angel has directly helped me in a time of need. (RA_7)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused8.3
-4) Don't know291.1
1) Strongly agree69726.7
2) Somewhat agree50919.5
3) Neither agree nor disagree60423.2
4) Somewhat disagree1927.4
5) Strongly disagree56921.8
Missing3 
TOTAL2608100.0
The Devil, demons, or evil spirits exist. (RA_8)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused3.1
-4) Don't know22.8
1) Strongly agree121846.7
2) Somewhat agree52320.1
3) Neither agree nor disagree32812.6
4) Somewhat disagree1445.5
5) Strongly disagree36814.1
Missing3 
TOTAL2606100.0
I believe in reincarnation, that people have lived previous lives. (RA_9)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused2.1
-4) Don't know341.3
1) Strongly agree30411.7
2) Somewhat agree44417
3) Neither agree nor disagree56521.7
4) Somewhat disagree30911.9
5) Strongly disagree94936.4
Missing3 
TOTAL2607100.0
I believe in Heaven where people live with God forever. (RA_11)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused2.1
-4) Don't know9.3
1) Strongly agree167164.1
2) Somewhat agree38914.9
3) Neither agree nor disagree31812.2
4) Somewhat disagree702.7
5) Strongly disagree1465.6
Missing3 
TOTAL2605100.0
I believe there is a Hell where people experience pain as punishment for their sin. (RA_12)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused3.1
-4) Don't know16.6
1) Strongly agree112343.1
2) Somewhat agree51219.6
3) Neither agree nor disagree42316.2
4) Somewhat disagree1877.2
5) Strongly disagree34213.1
Missing3 
TOTAL2606100.0
Think about how you have tried to understand and deal with major problems in your life over the past three years. To what extent did you try to make sense of the situation and decide what to do on your own? (RA_15)
TOTAL%
-4) Don't know5.2
1) A great deal131050.2
2) Quite a bit83832.1
3) A little30111.5
4) Not at all883.4
5) Not applicable652.5
Missing3 
TOTAL2607100.0
[IF RM_1= 2, 3, 4 OR 5, ASK RA_17. ELSE SKIP TO RA_18] Think about how you have tried to understand and deal with major problems in your life over the past three years. To what extent did you look to God or a larger spiritual force for strength, support, guidance? (RA_17)
TOTAL%
1) A great deal103641.8
2) Quite a bit65226.3
3) A little57423.2
4) Not at all1737
5) Not applicable441.8
Missing131 
TOTAL2479100.0
Think about how you have tried to understand and deal with major problems in your life over the past three years. To what extent did you consider passages in your religious text? (RA_18)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused10
-4) Don't know2.1
1) A great deal61723.7
2) Quite a bit46717.9
3) A little68026.1
4) Not at all76929.5
5) Not applicable702.7
Missing3 
TOTAL2606100.0
Think about how you have tried to understand and deal with major problems in your life over the past three years. To what extent did you consider congregational teachings or talk to religious leaders? (RA_19)
TOTAL%
-7) Refused2.1
-4) Don't know10
1) A great deal42916.5
2) Quite a bit41315.8
3) A little71627.5
4) Not at all97037.2
5) Not applicable762.9
Missing3 
TOTAL2607100.0
Think about how you have tried to understand and deal with major problems in your life over the past three years. To what extent did you talk to people in your religious congregation? (RA_20)
TOTAL%
-4) Don't know4.3
1) A great deal23415.8
2) Quite a bit30220.4
3) A little52935.7
4) Not at all37925.6
5) Not applicable322.2
Missing1131 
TOTAL1480100.0


Instructions
View each question on our survey and how our respondents answered to the left.

To perform an auto-analysis of how an item relates to key demographics such as gender, education, church attendance and more, click on the "Analyze results" link below a variable.
Modules
Give us your feedback!

Through out these sections, we invite you to enter the discussion about these findings and what their implications may be. Click on the COMMENT link to send your thoughts to pals@rice.edu. Where appropriate we will include comments for others to read and discuss. Names of contributors will not be posted, but, if you like, include your religious tradition.

Search Geographical Profiles
ARDA's Geographic Profiles allow you to view maps of the social, economic, demographic, and religious landscape of the United States, all the way down to the neighborhood level. You can even generate a summary report using a variety of options.

Enter a zip code to see a map now:
US Congregational Membership Reports
Explore congregational membership across the United States. These data are provided by the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies.

Enter your 5-digit zip code to see a religious profile now: