Research has shown that belief in an afterlife, a form of symbolic immortality, can alleviate the negative emotions associated with one’s mortality (Deschesne et. al, 2003). We found this aspect of TMT particularly interesting, but lacking any substantial research. Therefore, we set out to determine if belief in an afterlife could diminish the effects of mortality salience. As far as we know, our study is the first to use a pre-screening process to determine participants’ prior beliefs. One prediction might be that those who believe in an afterlife will be less affected by the effects of mortality salience.
Butsch, Gillian C.; Crawford, Melissa A.; Erickson, Lauren A.; and Green, Cassie M., "Terror Management Theory and Belief in an Afterlife" (2006). Undergraduate Research Symposium (UGRS). 6.