There are plenty of applications where religion could be considering as psychologically damaging. I am interested in discussing the different ways it damages.
For one, I think it is not healthy to believe that 24/7, some conscious being is watching and judging your every thought and action, especially when you consider the broad spectrum of what is considered wrong by religious standards.

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Yes Michael, I think extremist type religions create permanent damage to the individuals that have been exposed to it on many fronts. However if it were not for the extreme nature of the religion' you may not have felt compelled to further research which may be what brought you to atheism in the first place, so be gratefull for that. Also as in my experience so far one is able to repair the damage moving forward.

Some people would be deeply annoyed at having "some one" incessantly watch them.  Others would regard the "watcher" as a benevolent parent, and are persuaded that a moment not watched is a moment in peril.  Still others might think of the watcher-god not as snooper or a parent, but as a passive resource available 24/7 on demand.

For most of us on this board, being constantly watched - especially by a supposedly omnipotent, omniscient being - would be not merely creepy, but stultifying.  If I am always being observed and guided, none of my actions is really my own.  Autonomy becomes stunted, diluted and ultimately meaningless.  But for most people in the world - for most are religious! - having a big daddy in the sky offers a welcome feeling of security, a bulwark against a cruel and impersonal world.

I've even felt that sensation towards my lovers.

I don't think anyone really believes that their god is watching them 24/7.  If they did, there would be a lot less despicable behavior.  It is mostly lip-service given by people that are terrified by the complete cessation of their existence after they die.  

In my opinion, religion's greatest shortcoming is that religion stunts people's growth psychologically.  We already have enough problems without having people circumvent reality with publicly accepted mythologies.

indeed. 'but the kids gotta believe'
dumbest cop out shit i ever heard... from an exsatanist go figure; honest!

this is gonna be a doozie!

I believe that religion is unhealthy in the messages that some preachers send out:  snap those wrists of boys that are showing "signs of gayness".  Slap those daughters who are acting like tomboys.  Shun those who are different because of sexuality, race, colour, whatever else you want to shun.  It's just sad the amount of garbage that Christians and Jews and Muslims believe from their holy men.  Terribly sad that they can't be loving, forgiving, and accepting of diversity.

No Michael... religion, per se, is not unhealthy, I believe it is the other way around, religion attracts people that are psychologically unhealthy... No basically healthy mind, this is inquisitive and thoughtful, will keep itself in the childlike state of magical thinking. I think that we have to sepparte Religion (capital R) the organized fraud, from religion (small r) the beliefs of a person. The first is dangerous, the second not.

Religion is psychologically damaging if you realize the truth. With me, it lead to bitterness and an intense hate of religious belief. It leaves the same wound as if you had been conned out of your life savings, that is if you were a devoted believer and made important life choices as a result.
It is more damaging to everyone who disagrees with the given religion. Many religions are very good at bullying and persecuting those who don't share their particular fairy stories.

Yes some can such as David Koresh and his followers or Jim Jones who's followers committed suicide on his orders or the Catholic Church which hid and protected pedophile priests for decades and blamed the victims or the Radical Islamist who follow the dictates of their Mullahs to kill people for drawing a picture of Muhammad.  

I agree with John D that many factors play into why a person believes and supports the dogma of their religion especially when it's obvious to us that it's dehumanizing, immoral, homophobic, anti-science, anti-education and the list goes on.  Most of the Christians I know tend to ignore or try to rationalize their non-Christian behavior through the teachings of their religion and seldom see it as hypocritical or see the negative image it presents to others.



Here is an example of a typical Fundamentalist Christian Minister (Baptist) giving his Sunday Sermon in North Carolina. Notice that the Minister needs a lesson in English grammar and listen to the "amens" from the congregation.  Are these people psychologically damaged or just uneducated rednecks that use their religion to promote hatred or both?

The problem with that video was as much the apologist who came on after as it is Worley.  He wants to allege that Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13 are being taken "out of context" and that the bible is supposed to be about love when the violence and misogyny in the Old Testament by itself is rampant, unapologetic and utterly despicable, and where their main man affirms the law outlined in the OT with his statements in Matthew 5:17-20.

Some have said that such radical preachers as Worley are the true representatives of the bible.  I'm not certain I'm inclined to disagree...

I agree Loren.  Men like Worley and the ignorant bigots that populate the pews of his church  get their permission to hate from their mythical, ignorant, bigoted, misogynistic, child murdering, rape condoning, slave condoning but loving god.  They work hard to be just like him.




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