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Thursday, February 03, 2011

hmmm, first i've heard of this

The Army’s Wrong-Headed (and Discriminatory) “Spiritual Fitness Test”

It’s hard to believe that the U.S. Army has something known as the “Spiritual Fitness Test.”  According to an NPR report, Brig. Gen. Rhonda Cornum, director of something called “Comprehensive Soldier Fitness,” supposedly found data that “spiritual fitness has a positive impact on quality of life, on coping and on mental health.”  Since that “finding,” the army has had a required survey for soldiers to assess their “spiritual fitness.”  One question in the survey asks a soldier to rank herself or himself on the statement: I am a spiritual person. I believe that in some way my life is closely connected to all of humanity. I often find comfort in my religion and spiritual beliefs.”  Another asks to rank herself or himself on “In difficult times, I pray or meditate.”

Obviously, atheists and other non-religious soldiers will get ”low” marks on the test.  In fact, most atheists might be expected to get 100% of the questions “wrong.”  A “low” mark on the test results in an assessment that:.................


looked it up to make sure and yup, it's real:
Army's 'Spiritual Fitness' Test Angers Some Soldiers
by Barbara Bradley Hagerty
Multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan have taken a toll on soldiers: Witness the rise in suicides and other stress-related disorders. A few years ago, the Army noticed that some soldiers fared better than others, and it wondered: Why?
One reason, says Brig. Gen. Rhonda Cornum, is that people who are inclined toward spirituality seem to be more resilient.
"Researchers have found that spiritual people have decreased odds of attempting suicide, and that spiritual fitness has a positive impact on quality of life, on coping and on mental health," says Cornum, who is director of Comprehensive Soldier Fitness.......................

pic: J. Scott Applewhite/AP
Brig. Gen. Rhonda Cornum, pictured here in 2008, says the Army's spiritual fitness test was developed in part because people who are inclined toward spirituality seem to be more resilient. But she says that nothing about the assessment indicates whether someone is fit to be a soldier.


 

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