Spiritual Bypass Scale (SBS-13)


Assessment name:  Spiritual Bypass Scale-13 (SBS-13)

Scale overview: To assess the observed spiritual bypassing phenomenon, Fox et al. (2017) developed the 13 item Spiritual Bypass Scale.

Authors: Fox, Cashwell, and Picciotto

   [Read more about Spiritual Bypassing in Psychotherapy]

Response Type: The 13 items are rated on a four-point scale of agreement.

Scale items

Data analyses from two ethnically diverse US adult samples supported two factors (Psychological Avoidance, PA; Spiritualizing, SP).

PA example:

When I am in pain, I believe God will deliver me from it

SP example:

When someone I know is in trouble, I believe it is because they have done something wrong spiritually.


Psychometric properties

Cronbach’salphas: Total scale = .85, PA = .82; Sp = .75.

The total SBS score was associated with the ASPIRES subscales except for connectedness. PA was associated with depression and SP with stress and anxiety (DASS-21). The overall SBS score was correlated with five factor traits A and N. For the scale items and additional data, see Fox et al. (2017).


Availability: See table 1 on page 277 of Fox et al., 2017.

Reference for the scale

Fox, J., Cashwell, C. S., & Picciotto, G. (2017). The opiate of the masses: Measuring spiritual bypass and its relationship to spirituality, religion, mindfulness, psychological distress, and personality. Spirituality in Clinical Practice, 4(4), 274-287. doi: https://dx.doi.org/10.1037/scp0000141


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