I'm starting my first semester of a 2-year diploma at the end of August, and I've just started receiving all my textbooks for class. Out of curiousity I started reading in my big Nursing Theory textbook today. I came to the chapter on "spirituality". The chapter is about understanding differnet religions and how that can affect a patient and family's views on healthcare (so far, so good) but then it talked about how a nurse should help patients with respect to spirituality and how to "evaluate your own relationship with god".
I'm an atheist and always have been. I'm perfectly comfortable with not believing in any gods or supernatural things, and it's not something I ever talk about with people because it has zero affect on my life anyway (plus it's nobody's business). I certainly wouldn't be comfortable discussing religion/spirituality with patients, nor would I be comfortable having all my fellow students and professors know that I don't believe in any gods (again, I'm not ashamed, it's just nobody else's business).
How often do matters of religion & spirituality really come into play in Nursing School? In clinicals, with patients? What can I expect? How should I handle it if somebody asks me flat-out if I believe in Jesus, Allah, Krishna, Yahweh, etc? I don't want to make patients uncomfortable or alienate myself...