Author Topic: Extremism, faith and the loss of faith  (Read 88 times)

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Offline screwtape

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Extremism, faith and the loss of faith
« on: November 18, 2014, 10:34:35 AM »
Following are links relating to George Scialabba's extreme faith, mental illness and loss of faith.

He was a very religious catholic who joined Opus Dei.  He developed mental issues - depression mainly - and it did not mesh well with his nutzoid religion.  This endured for the last 45 years.  This is mainly a collection of medical records and notes written by various doctors.  It's pretty clear with or without religion the guy was going to have problems.  Religion was just the thing he latched onto and obsessed over.  It's sad.  http://www.thebaffler.com/salvos/endlessly-examined-life

To me (admittedly, mostly ignorant of psychology), the collection sort of implies that extreme faith is a symptom of mental illness. 

this link discusses his situation, and whether extreme faith is a gift or a curse.  Curse, obviously.
http://theweek.com/article/index/271971/is-devout-faith-a-blessing--or-curse

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Offline Nick

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Re: Extremism, faith and the loss of faith
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2014, 03:08:20 PM »
Ah, mentally ill.  He could have been a great religious leader.  It is all in the eyes.
Yo, put that in your pipe and smoke it.  Quit ragging on my Lord.

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Offline nogodsforme

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Re: Extremism, faith and the loss of faith
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2014, 06:51:12 PM »
We have discussed this before, how religious beliefs and practices include so many strange things as normal that mental illness can safely hide behind most religions. There is a fine (non-existent?) line between extreme religiosity and moderate nuttiness.

The exact same behavior that would get someone locked up is accepted if done in a religious context. Cut off your foreskin to honor Mr. Spock? Crazy. Cut off your foreskin to honor god? Fine. Have your girlfriend whip you bloody? Crazy. Have people whip you bloody for Muslim Ashura or during the Easter reenactment of the crucifixion in the Philippines? Acceptable.

Make your kids walk the streets in the cold for hours going door to door warning strangers about the impending zombie apocalypse? That's cruel and perverse. Call child protective services. Unless you put religious literature in your kids' hands. Then the same people will admire how devout those little ones are in their love for Jesus.

Some famous atheist commented that when George Bush said that god told him to invade Iraq, most people in the US thought that was an okay statement, even if they disagreed with the policy. If Bush had said that his dog, his hair dryer or his shoes had told him to invade Iraq, most people would have thought he should be removed from the presidency.

And we might not have invaded Iraq! :P
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline screwtape

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Re: Extremism, faith and the loss of faith
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2014, 08:27:13 AM »
Make your kids walk the streets in the cold for hours going door to door warning strangers about the impending zombie apocalypse? That's cruel and perverse. Call child protective services. Unless you put religious literature in your kids' hands. Then the same people will admire how devout those little ones are in their love for Jesus.

Related to that point, PZ posted a US map that shows to what extent states make religious exemptions for various forms of child abuse.
http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/files/2014/11/DefendingFaithHealers.png

I was surprised to find my state was not very good on that.  I ought to do a little research and talk to my state rep.
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Online Jag

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Re: Extremism, faith and the loss of faith
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2014, 06:27:16 PM »
 :o :o :o

Minnesota is dark grey????? I see some political activism in my future.....

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