Society is basic in human evolution we have developed special brain for society.
Normal human have a very sophisticated social brain, every human watch unconsciously every responses from his surrounding and respond in way that his behavior makes no conflict with his society or he will face the rejection which was fatal threat in the past because in our evolution every one rejected died alone or killed by beasts and don't passed his genes and every one feel the pain from rejection reformed and join the society, survived and passed his gene.
Human feel real pain from rejection and no normal human want to be rejected, this pain act as natural reformatory, it produced by chemicals in our brain.
So why people commit crimes that make them rejected by their society.
The religion explanation for this is the evil and the satan.
But there is no such things called evil.
So why a human bring pain to himself, Unless he feel no pain and his social brain is disabled, or he is not aware of what he is doing is distractive. Or what we call mental disorder.
So if there is serial killer who enjoy torture his victims, This is not because of evil it's because of malfunction of his brain or mental disorder.
"A mental disorder, also called a mental illness or psychiatric disorder, is a mental or behavioral pattern or anomaly that causes either suffering or an impaired ability to function in ordinary life (disability), and which is not developmentally or socially normative. Mental disorders are generally defined by a combination of how a person feels, acts, thinks or perceives. This may be associated with particular regions or functions of the brain or rest of the nervous system, often in a social context."

But not every criminal have mental disorder, Crimes can be committed by normal people if they consider what they are doing are not crimes, and that because their society approved these crimes.

if there is a crime that means two possible ways either the the one who committed this crime have mental disorder or the society which he get his value from it do not criticized this crime or even praised the crime - like one who born in a mafia family.
Religion praised many criminal act because it was made by ignorant and people who have mental disorders.
So these people who have mental disorder insert their ill behaviors into the societies using religion to fool our original social system.
religion distort society by these codes and everyone come after will not recognize these distortion, just like the the cell which copy virus RNA in its original DNA without knowing it will destroy the body.
We always setup our behavior and tune it to our surrounding to avoid rejection. So if these societies are infected by religion all our behavior will automatically adjusted to the religion, and our social brain follow these instructions.
People do not follow religion directly they follow the society and if society infected people blindly follow the infection codes.
If you born in Christian family you probably became Christian and if you born in Muslim family you became Muslim, it's just like biological DNA copied from parents.

Religion like HIV virus impossible to be cured, and once it copy itself in a society it will use the members of these society to copy itself to the descendants and spread around and there is no way to to remove it.
The only way -like HIV - is to make it less harmful, by deactivate the dangerous codes.

The conclusion is that religious people do not have mental disorder but they follow codes of people who have mental disorders, luckily not every religious take these codes seriously and most codes are inactive but in special circumstances all the codes could be activated and you can see live example in ISIS.
ISIS is like bringing a dinosaur alive instead of being in fossils.
If we investigate the holy books we will find it written by people who we consider now have serious kinds of mental disorders which are embedded in stories and in every line the writers are trying to justify their ill behaviors.

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Replies to This Discussion

And yet, you don't list any [non-social benefits of religion]

What would be the point? - since you are filtering or blocking out such info?

What would be the point?

So, what you're saying is that you can't come up with an example that doesn't fit my statement.

Call me crazy, but I don't consider mind control to be a benefit.  Even the paper lists it as a function of religion, not a benefit.

And looking around at religious people, I don't think religion is doing a very good job of keeping them under control.  Religion is correlated positively with the vast majority of negative social traits.  It might be true that religion promises to be and is needed as a control mechanism, and yet it doesn't seem to provide that control mechanism.

Within a certain scope, our criticisms are more fair than theirs.

Possibly.  But a lot of people who leave religion go through an angry phase, and their criticisms and attitudes are tinged by their anger and the long, painful struggle to get over religious indoctrination. 

They tend not to forget the basic tenets of their previous beliefs, though.

Anyway, this isn't the case with most that I know personally.  Most of the people I hang out with left religion through apathy, then came to the conclusion that it was all bullshit, after a good deal of research, out from under the positive reinforcement loop of life amongst the other worshipers.

I tend to hang out with a more intellectual crowd, so my sample set is a bit skewed.  Most of them were skeptics first, then became atheists.  I guess there could be a bit of anger at having been lied to for so long, but I don't think it's the sort you mean.

Correct Joseph, most atheist came from religious backgrounds. I know l was actively discouraged from questioning religion. Here in the bible belt people are taught, and often repeat, god said it, l believe it, end of subject.

I've heard similar from a small number of my coworkers, yes.  It least it isn't quite as common in the major cities.  The education rate is a lot higher than average, here in The Triangle, and multiculturalism helps with such blind dogmatism.  Most of the rest of the southeast is pretty scary, though.

Heh, thanks.  I'm working on the pithy phrasing, for the YouTube series I'm writing right now.

Well, let me get the crap recorded and edited, first.  That would be helpful.

Religion was probably adaptive for societies in the past, for many reasons.  Almost all societies have religions.  So the picture of a religion virus hijacking otherwise useful behavior is probably wrong. 

It doesn't mean that religion is still adaptive in affluent technological societies where people feel secure. 

How you describe this:

A non sequitur?

(the video shows Muslims marching for sharia and protesting British law)

I don't know if Islam is adaptive for those people.  If it makes the women have a lot of babies, I guess it is. 




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