Predictors of Deviant Behavior Justification among Muslims: Sociodemographic Factors, Subjective Well-Being, and Perceived Religiousness


Current evidence supports how deviant behavior can be predicted by sociodemographic factors, subjective well-being, and perceived religiousness. However, there is limited research when it concerns specificity such as Muslims justifying deviant behavior, and their subjective well-being and perceived religiousness within a single study. Most studies used Christian population or using a non-denominational approach. Therefore, in this study, data from World Value Survey Wave 6 was used to examine the Muslim population (N = 20,559) and deviant behavior justification. Sociodemographic factors, subjective well-being (life satisfaction, happiness, and state of health), and perceived religiousness (prayer frequency and importance of God in life) were hypothesized as predictors. Results revealed that these hypotheses are supported. However, many of these predictors are weak, having minimal effect. This is with the exception of having the worldview of God being important in one’s life, being both a strong and statistically significant predictor of deviant behavior justification. The more a person views God being important in life, the more it predicts a decrease in deviant behavior justification. This research provides a novel finding on the belief-behavior nexus, specifically concerning Muslims justifying deviant behavior when two forms of perceived religiousness—ritualistic and worldview—are being compared.

Author Biographies

Nur Amali Aminnuddin, Universiti Brunei Darussalam, Brunei Darussalam

He is a Lecturer of Islamic Studies at the Sultan Omar 'Ali Saifuddien Centre for Islamic Studies (SOASCIS), Universiti Brunei Darussalam, Brunei Darussalam. His research interests revolve within the disciplines of psychology of religion, social psychology, and behavioral sciences. He had published research in the contexts of organization, social groups, behavior, and personality. Religion, specifically Islam, is a recurring theme in his work. His current research focuses on Islamic religiousness and traits of young Muslims. He is also now looking into religious experiences and religious issues within the contemporary context of Muslims.

Harris Shah Abd. Hamid, University of Malaya, Malaysia

He has over 20 years of experience being a member of the academic staff in three Malaysian universities. His academic background includes psychology and ergonomics. He is currently attached to the Department of Educational Psychology and Counseling of the University of Malaya as a Senior Lecturer where he is the Head of the Psychometric Cluster of the Centre of Educational and Psychological Assessment, Testing, and Services (CEPATS).


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How to Cite
Aminnuddin, N., & Abd. Hamid, H. (2021). Predictors of Deviant Behavior Justification among Muslims: Sociodemographic Factors, Subjective Well-Being, and Perceived Religiousness. Islamic Guidance and Counseling Journal, 4(2).