Wednesday, November 07, 2007


Found an interesting site:

Here are my results for their 'hope tests'. I find it interesting, but not surprising, that my high scores are in the spiritual realm, while my low scores are in 'trusting the support of other people' realm...

Results of your State Hope Assessment
This part of the hope test addresses your current experience of hope. It reflects your conscious state of mind over the past two weeks. The red number is your score. On the line following your score, we have listed the average score as well as the lower, middle, and upper ranges of our obtained distribution (i.e., those we might label "low", "medium" or "high" scores). Following each row of scores is a description of each scale.

Ultimate Gains
Your Score: 11 [Average=12; Low(0-10) Med(11-12) High(13-16)]
Unlike "wishes", the goals of hope are not "garden variety" or "pedestrian". Theoretical accounts of this dimension of hope include philosopher Joseph Godfrey's "ultimate hope" as well as psychologist Paul Pruyser's distinction between "hopes" and "wishes". Psychologist James Averill's empirical research has also demonstrated that hopes are more likely to derive from an individual's "core values".
A High Score suggests that you believe that you are making progress towards important or "ultimate" life goals.
A Low Score implies that you are not making enough progress in terms of your major aspirations.

Supported Strivings
Your Score: 12 [Average=12; Low(0-11) Med(12) High(13-16)]
Your hope for success is a joint product of inner mastery and external support. The philosopher William Lynch described hope as a process of "collaborative mutuality." The psychologist Paul Pruyser wrote that when one is "immersed" in hope, the ego is not experienced as an isolated center of power.
A High Score suggests that you feel able to rely on outside help to achieve your goals.
A Low Score indicates that you are more likely than others to be struggling on your own to realize cherished hopes and dreams.

Interpersonal Bonding
Your Score: 9 [Average=14; Low(0-12) Med(13-14) High(15-16)]
Hope is about love and attachment. Western culture frequently overlooks this fact, putting more focus on the mastery aspects of hope. In contrast, many people in the world derive their greatest sense of hope from relationships with others, a higher power or the forces of nature. The philosopher William Lynch reminded us that hope is "not a private resource" created in isolation.
A High Score suggests that you feel closer, more loved, and more connected to other people and forces than the average person taking this test.
A Low Score indicates that you feel more lonely, more isolated, and more disconnected than most people who have taken this test.

Trust Experiences
Your Score: 5 [Average=9; Low(0-7) Med(8-11) High(12-16)]
Trust is a core element of hope. A sense of trust is sustained by acts of disclosure, meditations upon recent encounters with confidantes, and perceived opportunities for further sharing.
A High Score suggests that you have been able to disclose to one or more confidantes and/or that your trust has been safely maintained.
A Low Score implies that you are lacking a trusted confidante and/or that your trust has recently been violated.

Fear Reduction
Your Score: 8 [Average=11; Low(0-9) Med(10-11) High(12-16)]When individuals feel "hopeful", they secure a sense of peace. In contrast, Aquinas, Spinoza and Pascal all agreed that the "opposite" of "hope" was "fear". In this sense, "hope" consists of a felt capacity to handle threats and stressors. At the physiological level, "hope" is associated with a "balanced" nervous, meaning a proper mix of sympathetic (activating) activity and parasympathetic (relaxing) activity.
A High Score suggests that you are capable of reducing your fears and remaining emotionally "self-regulated".
A Low Score implies that you are struggling to control your fears and may be finding it hard to stay calm, particularly in stressful situations.

Liberation Experiences
Your Score: 5 [Average=11; Low(0-9) Med(10-12) High(13-16)]
Hope may be engendered when an individual senses there is a way out of an unpleasant or dangerous situation. Psychologists Shlomo Breznitz and C.R. Snyder both emphasized this aspect of hope. Breznitz labeled this dimension "the work of hope" while Snyder referred to the "ways of hope". By comparison, an experience of hopelessness engulfs the individual who feels trapped and cannot envision "an exit" from an intolerable situation.
A High Score suggests that you feel a sense of actual or symbolic liberation.
A Low Score reveals that you may feel struck or trapped in one or more areas of your life.

Interpersonal Assurance
Your Score: 12 [Average=13; Low(0-11) Med(12-13) High(14-16)]
In difficult times, many individuals rely on other people to secure a measure of hope. They are assured by the positive acts, thoughts or expressed emotions of friends and loved ones. Philosophers Gabriel Marcel and Joseph Godfrey elevated this notion of interpersonal assurance to a quasi-spiritual level with the phrase "I hope in thee for us". From their perspective, "true hope" includes a deep faith in one or more "buffering relationships", involving friends, family, and/or one's community.
A High Score indicates that you currently feel securely embedded in a protective network of relationships.
A Low Score suggests that you may be lacking in the area of emotional support.

Spiritual State Scales
Spiritual Inspiration
Your Score: 12 [Average=7; Low(0-3) Med(4-9) High(10-16)]
Psychologist Kenneth Pargament described the control-related beliefs of many religious individuals in terms of a perceived "working alliance". Rather than believing the locus of control for determining important outcomes is completely internal (self) or exclusively external (higher power), such individuals believe it is a collaborative venture. " Hope-based "spiritual inspiration" is essentially the same thing, derived from a sense that one's dreams and aspirations are being "blessed" or otherwise aided by a higher power.
A High Score suggests that you feel "divinely" or "spiritually" inspired in your work.
A Low Score suggests that you do not believe that you work is blessed by a higher power.

Spiritual Presence
Your Score: 12 [Average=7; Low(0-3) Med(4-9) High(1-16)]
For many people, hope is intertwined with spiritual beliefs and experiences. Depending on your particular background and beliefs, a spiritual presence may involve a personal god, a higher power, or contact with the forces of nature. Some scientists believe that we may be genetically wired to have such experiences. Of course, this also leaves open the possibility that we were wired by God or a supreme power to connect with this higher reality.
A High Score suggests that your recent exposure to spiritual experiences is greater than 2/3 of those who have taken this test.
A Low Score indicates that, compared to most people who have taken this test, you have had less exposure to spiritual phenomena.

Spiritual Assurance
Your Score: 12 [Average=6; Low(0-2) Med(3-8) High(9-16)]
Since the time of the Neanderthals, human beings have relied on spiritual beliefs to provide them with a sense of protection from harm and loss. As the saying goes, "there are no atheists in the foxhole". "Spiritual assurance" follows from a deep faith in one or more "centers of value" that represent salvation of one form or another. Along these line, the mind-body literature suggests that individuals with deeper spiritual beliefs are less likely to suffer from such stress-related disorders as hypertension or cardiovascular disease.
A High Score suggests that your spiritual beliefs are providing you with a feeling of security and wellbeing.
A Low Score implies that your spiritual beliefs are not providing you with a sense of safety and security. Alternatively, you may feel safe and secure but attribute this to non-spiritual factors.

Your Overall State Hope Score
Your Score: 98 [Average=101; Low(0-90) Med(91-108) High(109-160)]
This score represents your total level of current hope (recent and conscious hope).
A High Score means that you are experiencing more hope right now than most of the people taking this test.
A Low Score indicates that your current hope levels are lower than most of the people who have taken this test.

-=Test #2=-
Trait Hope Scores
This part of the hope test addresses your deeper reservoir of hope traits and skills. In a sense, this is your hope foundation. It includes three aspects of your "Hopeful Core": the Attached Self, the Empowered Self, and the Resilient Self. This hope foundation is the result of your entire developmental history. Nevertheless, it can be changed if you are motivated to make it happen.

Ultimate Ends
Your Score: 8 [Average=9; Low(0-8) Med(9) High(10-12)]
Hope goals tend to be transcendent or value-based. "Ultimate ends" refer to the long-range investments that can sustain a sense of hopefulness for years or even decades. A number of concepts emerging from work in "positive psychology" intersect with this conceptualization of hope goals. For example, psychologist Robert Emmons has written of the motivating force of "ultimate goals".
A High Score suggests that you are sustained by the successful pursuit of long-range, life-defining goals.
A Low Score suggests that you have not developed long-range, life-defining goals, or do not believe they are attainable.

Supported Mastery
Your Score: 8 [Average=7; Low(0-6) Med(7-8) High(9-12)]
Hope is about positive goal expectations. However, unlike the narcissist or blinded optimist, the hopeful person realizes they move forward with the help of others. From a hope and mastery perspective, a key developmental achievement is the establishment of a "self-object bond". Coined by psychiatrist Heinz Kohut, the "self-object" is an enhanced sense of self derived from an intense bond with a powerful other (e.g., between a small child and his or her "all powerful" mother). An effective parent, a wise coach, or a good friend shares their power, allowing an individual to absorb and merge with their energies and skills.
A High Score suggests that you can rely on others to support your plans and goals. In short, you feel empowered by supportive attachments.
Low Scores: Compared to other test-takers, you are less likely to feel that you can depend on others for help in achieving important life goals.

Basic Trust
Your Score: 8 [Average=10; Low(0-9) Med(10-11) High(12)]
Hopeful individuals are open and have the ability to trust nature and themselves as well as other people. The great developmental psychologist, Erik Erikson, presumed that hope was the first virtue to develop in the child and that its precursor was basic trust.
High Scores: Compared to most of the people who take this test, you are more likely to have people in your life who really listen to you. You also trust that if the need arose, they would drop whatever they were doing to help you.
Low Scores: Compared to other test-takers, you are less likely to have trustworthy friends and confidantes. Research shows that the presence of at least one confidante can buffer individuals from a variety of illnesses. In addition, the data indicates that the health benefits increase as the number of confidantes grows.

Your Score: 11 [Average=9; Low(0-7) Med(8-9) High(10-12)]
Unexplored aspects of the self are a rich and untapped resource. William James wrote about "the more", a mysterious spiritual reservoir in the deeper realms of the psyche. Paradoxically, one experiences "the more" as both a part of the self and as part of something outside of the self and greater in scope and strength. Likewise, Carl Jung implored humanity to make use of the ancient wisdom stored in such hopeful archetypes as one's "inner child" and the "wise old man". The philosopher William Lynch wrote the following about hope, "The further it would soar, the deeper it must plunge."
High Scores: Compared to most people who take this test, you are more likely to be in touch with the deeper and more spiritual aspects within yourself.
Low Scores: Compared to other test-takers, you are less likely to make contact with deeper elements and forces within your psyche. On the positive side, you may have strong defense mechanisms that shield your conscious mind from painful aspects of inner and outer reality.

Personal Terror Management
Your Score: 6 [Average=8; Low(0-7) Med(8) High(9-12)]
Hope is about self-regulation. The hopeful person is able to manage their fears and successfully confront the stresses of life. They can "self-sooth" rather than relying heavily on sources of "external tranquilization" such as inordinate use of alcohol, addictive painkillers, or a co-dependent relationship. In the Oxford English Dictionary, you will find that one definition of hope dating back to the middle ages is "an island in the middle of an wasteland." The hopeful person is an island of comfort, albeit with many bridges to nurture the spirit and psyche.
High Scores: Compared to most people who take this test, you are more capable of self-regulation and terror management.
Low Scores: Compare to most people who take this test, you are less able to manage personal fears and worries. This is an area you should target for self-improvement, lest you find yourself continually dependent on external sources for stress-management.

Social Terror Management
Your Score: 7 [Average=10; Low(0-8) Med(9-10) High(11-12)]
The hopeful person finds assurance in close relationships. Developmentally, this capacity to trust in the goodwill of others comes from having your safety needs met in childhood. In contrast, many childhood trauma survivors struggle to gain a basic sense in the safeness in the presence of other people. Survival-oriented trust may well be one of the factors that link social support to healing. For example, following a heart attack, individuals who report having at least one confidante are far less likely to have another attack. Similarly, women with breast cancer live longer if they participate in a support group. The hopeful person is able to recruit care. This is a product of many factors, including their belief in a benign universe and their openness towards other people and the world in general. In addition, the hopeful person is a good judge of character (they know whom to trust). Research by psychologist Gina O'Connell Higgins has demonstrated that resilient children and adults have a knack for extracting a lot of support from a thin outpouring of affection.
High Scorers are more likely to believe they can rely on others, including family or friends, for aid in times of need. High scores are also good "care recruiters".
Low Scorers may feel unsupported or left to their own devices in times of difficulty. They may also find it hard to recruit care from others.

Positive Future
Your Score: 8 [Average=9; Low(0-8) Med(9-10) High(11-12)]
Hopeful individuals have faith in the future. They see the future as another resource, ripe with gifts and possibilities. The more hopeful person also believes they have a say in their future, believing they can and will play an active role in shaping its development.
High Scores: Compared to most people who take this test, you are more likely to view the future in a positive light.
Low Scores: Compared to other test-takers, you find it more difficult to envision a future that is controllable, loving, or safe.

Spiritual Trait Scales
Spiritual Empowerment
Your Score: 10 [Average=5; Low(0-2) Med(3-6) High(7-12)]
Hopeful individuals often feel their efforts are blessed by a higher power. They see their actions as a part of a larger mission that has been spiritually sanctioned. In the New Testament, St. Paul states "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Likewise, in the Koran it is written, "He will send you the skies pouring abundant rain and add strength to your strength." Tibetan holy men encourage their followers to consider the wisdom of depending on a greater power, noting, "a drop of water is a little thing; but when will it dry away if united to a lake?"
High Scores: Compared to most people who take this test, you are more likely to feel empowered by a spiritual force or higher intelligence to achieve your life goals.
Low Scores: Compared to other test-takers, you are less likely to experience a source of power that is spiritually based.

Benign Universe
Your Score: 10 [Average=7; Low(0-5) Med(6-8) High(9-12)]
Hopeful individuals believe there is goodness in the world. In fact, this the underlying message in all of the great works of art and literature; there are forces of light that can override any form of darkness. The psychologist Paul Pruyser associated hope with the belief that "there is a positive force somewhere in the universe."
High Scores: Compared to most people who take this test, you are more likely to hold a positive view of the cosmos.
Low Scores: Compared to other test-takers, you are less likely to view the universe in a positive light and more apt to believe that evil predominates in the world.

Spiritual Openness
Your Score: 12 [Average=6; Low(0-4) Med(5-7) High(8-12)]
The hopeful person is open to spiritual input. In fact, every major spiritual tradition includes some type of ritual that is designed to foster greater openness towards a higher power. In the west, there are confessions and appeals for grace. In the east, palms are turned upwards to the heavens. The Australian Aborigines transform their ordinary state of consciousness into a fluid spiritual receptacle through endless hours of dancing and rhythmic chanting. The Ifa of Western Africa direct a spot on their foreheads towards Orisa. Many Native Americans place special furs and feathers under them as they pray, hoping to solidify their bond with the spirit world.
High Scores: Compared to most people who take this test, you are more likely to invest in a spiritual life and make efforts to allow experiences of this kind into your life.
Low Scores: Compared to other test-takers, you are less likely to believe in the possibility of spiritual contact. Consequently, you are less likely to make time for spiritual exercises such as meditation or prayer.

Mystical Experience
Your Score: 11 [Average=6; Low(0-4) Med(5-8) High(9-12)]
Hopeful individuals enjoy a sense of connectedness with a higher plane of reality. This "greater realm" may be religious or spiritual. It might involve a vision of God, a bond with a loved one, an indescribable feeling state, or more simply a feeling of oneness with the rest of humanity. Rumi, the great Middle Eastern poet, called the mystical state a "portal of hope."
High Scores: Compared to most of those who take this test, you are more likely to experience the presence of a spiritual force or a sense of connection involving a loved one. At times you may even feel as if you are being guided or directed by this presence or power.
Low Scores: Compared to other test-takers, you are less likely to experience a communion with forces, spirits, or a higher power. Perhaps you are a nonbeliever or a believer who nevertheless has trouble reaching this level of spiritual experience.

Spiritual Terror Management
Your Score: 10 [Average=6; Low(0-3) Med(4-7) High(8-12)]
The hopeful person is at peace. They are comforted by a set of transcendent values that make up their personal faith system. Theologian James Fowler has referred to these beliefs as centers of value. In the power of Myth, Joseph Campbell also affirmed the ancient wisdom of staying "centered". He described the folly of trying to ride the wheel of fortune, sometimes you are riding atop the wheel and sometimes you find yourself at the bottom. However, if you stay grounded in the middle, regardless of how the wheel turns, you will always be at the same place, "centered".
High Scores: Compared to most people who take this test, you have a stronger set of spiritual beliefs for coping with adversity.
Low Scores: Compare to most people who take this test, you are less likely to rely on spiritual beliefs in addressing important life challenges.

Symbolic Immortality
Your Score: 12 [Average=7; Low(0-5) Med(6-8) High(9-12)]
The light of hope is forever. Many of the hopeful are buffered by religious beliefs that promise a benign afterlife. Christians, Jews and Muslims look forward to heaven. Native Americans, the African Ifa, and the Australian Aborigines await a reunion with the spirit world. Hindus expect to be reincarnated. Some Buddhists prepare for a cycle of rebirths while others envision a heaven of indescribable beauty. Even the hopeful humanist or scientific atheist may presume the spirit lives on in some form. The psychologist Erik Erikson believed that symbolic immortality was at least possible through acts of "generativity" (participation in people and things that will outlive the mortal self).
High Scores: Compared to most of those who take this test, you are more likely to believe in some form of immortality. This does not necessarily mean that you believe in a religiously grounded heaven or hell. However, like the narrator in Thorton Wilder's Our Town, you believe there is "something eternal about human beings."
Low Scores: Compared to most of those who take this test, you are less likely to believe in the immortality of the soul or spirit. You may hold strong atheistic beliefs or view yourself as a hard pragmatist.

Spiritual Integrity
Your Score: 9 [Average=10; Low(0-8) Med(9-10) High(11-12)]
Psychologist Paul Pruyser once noted that hope is less about "having" or "getting" and more about "being". In this sense, hope can never be taken away from an individual, regardless of life circumstances. Hope as a way of being in the world implies a sense of "spiritual integrity". This virtue derives from crafting a life of meaning and purpose. Both the atheistic Erikson and the Christian writer Rick Warren have argued that a "life mission" is critical. Spiritual integrity can also be related to the Hindu call for each individual to "uphold the world".
A High Score indicates that you have forged a "mission" and derived a sense of meaning and purpose in life.
A Low Score suggests that you have not developed a "life calling". As a result, you may be vulnerable to feelings of meaninglessness and purposelessness.

Your Overall Trait Hope Score
Your Score: 130 [Average=109; Low(0-97) Med(98-121) High(122-168)]
This score reflects your total reservoir of hope-related traits and skills, providing an index of the strength of your Hopeful Core (your Attached Self, Empowered Self, and Resilient Self.)
High Scores: Compared to most people who take this test, you are generally a more hopeful individual who is solidly attached, sufficiently empowered, and relatively skillful at regulating your responses to stress and loss.
Low Scores: Compared to other test-takers, you may be lacking in supportive attachments as well as feeling less empowered or supported in your goal pursuits. In addition, you may also have a relatively lower threshold for managing stress and loss.

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