While faith has endured for thousands of years, crossed cultures, and has changed the course of history and everyday life, one key question remains: if spirituality is so intertwined with humankind itself, what are the psychological effects?

That is the key exploration of the latest book from TC’s Lisa Miller, Professor of Psychology & Education, who recently discussed her work with the Wall Street Journal.

“Spirituality is innate,” Miller says. “Some of us are more predisposed than others to feeling spiritually connected. And how a child is engaged shapes and forms his or her spiritual core. But we can all cultivate this natural capacity and build our spiritual muscle.”

The Founder and Director of the Spirituality Mind Body Institute, Miller in addition to teaching and research conducts workshops to introduce cognitive spirituality to educators, corporations, social welfare institutions and the U.S. military. The Awakened Brain: The New Science of Spirituality and Our Quest for an Inspired Life is her third book.

“The data has also shown that character strengths and virtues such as optimism, grit, commitment and forgiveness go hand-in-hand with strong spiritual awareness,” Miller explains. “It helps us be more creative. It also leads to more gratitude and more resilience. There is a sense that things will work out.”

Miller’s full interview is available to Wall Street Journal subscribers here.