Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though t'were his own.
-Johann von Goethe
From "The Healing Power of Faith" by Harold G. Koenig, M.D.:
What does all this research [about the correlation between religious practice and health] mean to you and your family? Probably more than you realize: The chances are you are already religious; the great majority of Americans are. Polls indicate that 96 percent of people believe in God or a universal spirit and that 90 percent pray...
But fewer than half of all Americans (43 percent) regularly attend religious services, even though research reveals that people who combine a strong personal faith with religious activity, including participation in worship service, receive the most significant health benefits of faith. The results of our research suggest it would be beneficial to increase your religious practices if this is compatible with your personal faith. Even if you lack strong faith, you might gain considerable health benefits by observing devoutly religious people and adopting some of their practices, perhaps community volunteer work...
When people suffer prolonged illness or disability, they often become slaves to the disease, which can dominate every aspect of their lives... But others use faith to place their physical conditions in perspective and give them the confidence needed to fight the illness.