When people believe in things beyond their senses reason leaves the safety zone of reality and goes off into areas it’s no way equipped to deal with. They go beyond a point where rational thought ends and imaginative dreaming takes over, and while there is no circumstance where this can be trusted to supply the mind with viable information, yet they believe this to be the very domain of the mind where truth is to be found, and the very opposite from which any rational consideration should lead them. Under such misapprehensions the mind is off the leash and wanders uncontrolled beyond the borders of reality, accepting the most outrageous imaginings as true by warrant of thought.
Contemplation when under the watchful eye of ones intellect may be very rewarding, even speculation kept inside the bounds of credibility can lead to educational insights, but to leap from these benign musings to a dead sure belief is a different matter altogether. We seem to lose appreciation of the extent to which these suppositions defy belief. Imagining a whole world separated from but attached to the one your living in, that’s beyond any comprehension of the senses, yet can be thought into existence, outside of reality yet responsible for it, is a sizable assumption to make using only the power of thought. It’s also spooky and occult.
We also forget the primitive innocence needed for such a malfunction of the understanding to manifest itself in the mind as an intellectual insight.
We’re often reminded of the fact that illusion is not mental illness and that religious beliefs stand or fall as a reasonable speculation, with little or no association with delirium, yet when we consider the meaning of the word we find that it’s pertinent only to matters concerning the natural world; belief beyond our senses is only available in pathology. In short, you have to be out of your mind to believe things that are incomprehensible to your mind. Religious conviction, I would reason, is a mental condition on a par with delusion, no more, but no less, unhinged.

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Comment by Michael Penn on August 26, 2015 at 4:14pm

I agree. "Unhinged" fits the situation. The problem is that the religious do not know they are unhinged. Their parents either passed belief on to them just like their parents before them, or the believer suddenly got the idea that "everything is answered if you only believe in god." Certainly we are special and not just junk, so a loving god must have created us. He also loves us so much that he wants us to live with him up in the sky.

Then we have devine justice. You would think it would work like this with god evening up the score on everything. Not so. An eye for an eye doesn't do it. If Hitler killed millions of people then he has to be killed, brought back to life so he can be tortured again and again forever and ever and ever. Just killing him isn't enough.

It's unhinged but it makes perfect sense to a fundamentalist believer. I know because I used to be one. Then they can also laugh at you because they have all the answers and you do not know anything. Yes, they have all the answers but no evidence for the answers.


Comment by Joan Denoo on August 23, 2015 at 9:25pm

"Unhinged" sounds like an appropriate word to me about those who hold religious conviction



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