Author Topic: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!  (Read 3140 times)

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Offline holybuckets

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #29 on: May 06, 2013, 01:06:53 PM »
1. Currently, there is no set definition or level of atheism. I believe Dr. Whitley is suggesting the need to categorize the term into sub-groups.
This is a reasonable interpretation of the footnoted section of the abstract.

Quote from: holybuckets
2. In the body of his text, Dr. Whitely explains that there are few studies dealing with atheism and mental health. He suggests further study.
The abstract states, "(2) there needs to be greater systematic investigation into the influence of atheism on psychiatry as an institution"; your explanation does not jive with it.  Given your access to the article, you should quote relevant parts from the report itself.

Thanks, I believe I cited the article if you care to look at it.

Quote from: holybuckets
3. Dr. Whitley examines atheistic leader from four countries who brutalized and killed it's own citizens. He is suggesting that further study in relation to atheism/mental health needs to be explored.
The abstract states, "(3) the relation of atheism to mental health needs to be explored by examining atheistic theory and its practical application, especially as it relates to the human condition, suffering, and concepts of personhood", therefore again, your explanation does not jive with it.  Again, given your access to the article, you should quote relevant parts from the report itself.

In short, holybuckets, we're going to need more than just you saying, "hey, this article says that atheism might be a mental illness", especially when you're basing that off of things that aren't stated in the abstract and frankly, don't follow from what is stated there.

Here is more of the article for those of you who may not have had access to the original.

"The relation of atheism to mental health can be explored by examining atheistic theory and its practical application, especially
as it relates to the human condition, suffering, and concepts of personhood. The new atheism is building on a substantial intellectual and political tradition that includes the intellectual atheism of Sigmund Freud, Bertrand Russell, George Bernard Shaw, Jean-Paul Sartre, and the like. Their writings can be examined to assess whether there is an “atheistic” perspective on mental illness. Another strand of atheistic thought involves the political atheism that was implemented by Mao Zedong, Pol Pot, Josef Stalin, Enver Hoxha, and others. Researchers can historically analyze attitudes and policies toward mental health and illness under these officially atheistic regimes for trends and commonalities. In relation to contemporary European and North American societies, the scientific atheism espoused by the likes of Richard Dawkins and James Watson could also be critically examined with regard to its possible implications for psychiatry. For example, the new atheists regularly use psychiatric parlance to describe the belief systems of people of faith (e.g., labeling them as “neurotic” or “delusional”). Indeed, Richard Dawkins has even argued that faith “seems to me to qualify as a kind of mental illness”27—an argument that has also been repeated by Sam Harris.10 In a similar vein, Dawkins has openly stated that “I think a case can be made that faith is one of the world’s great evils, comparable to the smallpox virus but harder to eradicate.”28 All of this demands further
systematic investigation of the new atheists’ approach to mental health and illness. It also raises another socio-moral
question that psychiatrists and their public bodies need to confront: given that evidence converges to suggest that religiosity
is good for mental health, does psychiatry have a duty to respond robustly to such statements by atheists?" p. 193
« Last Edit: May 06, 2013, 04:55:54 PM by holybuckets »

Offline Jag

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #30 on: May 06, 2013, 01:45:17 PM »
The exploration of the impact of religiosity on mental health is an enduring, if somewhat quiet, tradition. There has been virtually no exploration, however, of the influence of atheism on mental health. Though not a “religion,” atheism can be an orienting worldview that is often consciously chosen by its adherents, who firmly believe in the “truth” of atheism—a phenomenon known as “positive atheism.” Atheism, especially positive atheism, is currently enjoying something of a renaissance in the Western liberal democracies—a trend often referred to as the “new atheism.” I argue that atheism, especially positive atheism, should be treated as a meaningful sociocultural variable in the study of mental health. I argue that atheism (just like theism) is an appropriate domain of study for social and cultural psychiatrists (and allied social scientists) interested in exploring socio-environmental stressors and buffers relating to mental health. Specifically, I argue that (1) atheism needs to be accurately measured as an individual-level exposure variable, with the aim of relating that variable to psychiatric outcomes, (2) there needs to be greater systematic investigation into the influence of atheism on psychiatry as an institution, and (3) the relation of atheism to mental health needs to be explored by examining atheistic theory and its practical application, especially as it relates to the human condition, suffering, and concepts of personhood.[ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]

This is exactly as the abstract appears in my research database - and I have no intention of paying for the rest of it, in light of what the bolded (by me) section says. hb appears to suffer from poor reading comprehension.
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Online jaimehlers

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #31 on: May 06, 2013, 02:29:44 PM »
Given that psychology and psychiatry are difficult to understand for the average person, I wouldn't be at all surprised to find that holybuckets saw the reference to mental health and assumed that it was referring to mental illness.

I maintain that he needs to quote from the actual article itself to support his points, because as several people have shown, the abstract simply does not support the contentious points he's making.

Offline Graybeard

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #32 on: May 06, 2013, 03:21:52 PM »
Thanks Greybeard,
I agree, it is a bit Foxish...... But on the other hand, the study seeks to answer the question "are atheists mentally ill?" So, that is not an untrue statement. The study gives evidence of mental illness in the form of starving, imprisoning and murdering it's own citizens by atheistic leaders.
So as much as you dislike the headline, it is factually true.
You will have heard, "You swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth." Here, the "whole truth" is missing. This is important.

"A Harvard study may think so!" is inaccurate in its lack of "the whole truth". (i) the study has not been done yet, and therefore it should be first amended to "A Harvard study, that may or may not be conducted may think so!" and then "A Harvard study, that may or may not be conducted may show this or not!"

Granted, it is not so snappy, so we would have to reword it, "Proposed study into the mental health of atheists." I think that about covers it.

I remind myself when someone says "A may be B" he also means, "A may not be B". ; )
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Offline LoriPinkAngel

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #33 on: May 06, 2013, 05:55:49 PM »
I'm sure some atheists are mentally ill. Statistically speaking.



I figure if you rounded up 1000 random atheists & 1000 random theists you'd get about the same ratio of nuts:not so nuts in each group.

« Last Edit: May 06, 2013, 05:57:22 PM by LoriPinkAngel »
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Offline Quesi

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #34 on: May 06, 2013, 06:29:07 PM »
Oh Holybuckets, Holybuckets, Holybuckets.

Isn’t there something in your religion about not lying?  

Item number 3 is not part of the article at all, is it now? 

.......
3. Dr. Whitley examines atheistic leader from four countries who brutalized and killed it's own citizens. He is suggesting that further study in relation to atheism/mental health needs to be explored.

So tell us.  Did you make this up yourself?  Or did you plagiarize from someone else who was lying? 

Offline holybuckets

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #35 on: May 06, 2013, 06:40:44 PM »
Oh Holybuckets, Holybuckets, Holybuckets.

Isn’t there something in your religion about not lying?  

Item number 3 is not part of the article at all, is it now? 

.......
3. Dr. Whitley examines atheistic leader from four countries who brutalized and killed it's own citizens. He is suggesting that further study in relation to atheism/mental health needs to be explored.

So tell us.  Did you make this up yourself?  Or did you plagiarize from someone else who was lying? 

" Another strand of atheistic thought involves the political atheism that was implemented by Mao Zedong, Pol Pot, Josef Stalin, Enver Hoxha, and others. Researchers can historically analyze attitudes and policies toward mental health and illness under these officially atheistic regimes for trends and commonalities."

No Quesi, hate to disappoint you and Greybeard, but here it is......

Offline kin hell

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #36 on: May 07, 2013, 01:32:48 AM »
Ahsoholybuckets you're back.

Still leaking that less than honest puke I see.

Didn't your last abortive troll here teach you anything about truthfulness and accuracy, or do you just not care?
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Offline holybuckets

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #37 on: May 07, 2013, 04:23:25 AM »
Ahsoholybuckets you're back.

Still leaking that less than honest puke I see.

Didn't your last abortive troll here teach you anything about truthfulness and accuracy, or do you just not care?
Thanks Kin,
Good to see you are still adding intelligent posts to the conversation.

Offline Ambassador Pony

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #38 on: May 07, 2013, 05:26:25 AM »
Ambassador Pony,

Here is my take:

"Specifically, I argue that (1) atheism needs to be accurately measured as an individual-level exposure variable, with the aim of relating that variable to psychiatric outcomes, (2) there needs to be greater systematic investigation into the influence of atheism on psychiatry as an institution, and (3) the relation of atheism to mental health needs to be explored by examining atheistic theory and its practical application, especially as it relates to the human condition, suffering, and concepts of personhood."

1. Currently, there is no set definition or level of atheism. I believe Dr. Whitley is suggesting the need to categorize the term into sub-groups.
2. In the body of his text, Dr. Whitely explains that there are few studies dealing with atheism and mental health. He suggests further study.
3. Dr. Whitley examines atheistic leader from four countries who brutalized and killed it's own citizens. He is suggesting that further study in relation to atheism/mental health needs to be explored.

Do you understand the term "individual-level exposure variable", and how it relates to a psychological study?
You believe evolution and there is no evidence for that. Where is the fossil record of a half man half ape. I've only ever heard about it in reading.

Offline Graybeard

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #39 on: May 07, 2013, 06:47:17 AM »

" Another strand of atheistic thought involves the political atheism that was implemented by Mao Zedong, Pol Pot, Josef Stalin, Enver Hoxha, and others. Researchers can historically analyze attitudes and policies toward mental health and illness under these officially atheistic regimes for trends and commonalities."

No Quesi, hate to disappoint you and Greybeard, but here it is......

I have a cherry-picker for sale; it's in good condition, are you interested?

Here's a challenge for you, holybuckets, give me the names of 3 historical people who were obviously Christian and leaders, who behaved in the same way as those you have just quoted.

It's not a hard question.
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Online jaimehlers

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #40 on: May 07, 2013, 06:57:20 AM »
" Another strand of atheistic thought involves the political atheism that was implemented by Mao Zedong, Pol Pot, Josef Stalin, Enver Hoxha, and others. Researchers can historically analyze attitudes and policies toward mental health and illness under these officially atheistic regimes for trends and commonalities."
First off, this sentence does not justify the position you took.  Note how it says there, "another strand of atheist thought", emphasis mine.  In other words, you're painting with an awfully wide brush there, using only a single sentence as justification for it.

I also want you to cite where in the report/article you got it from, so that if someone else has access, or later gets access, they can check it easily.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2013, 07:44:43 AM by jaimehlers »

Offline Quesi

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #41 on: May 07, 2013, 07:50:07 AM »
No Quesi, hate to disappoint you and Greybeard, but here it is......

You know something, Holybucket?  I spent a disproportionate amount of time yesterday learning about your Dr. Whitley because, as I previously stated, he and I both work with similarly marginalized communities in different capacities.  His work builds upon the work of various local specialists with whom I have a cross-referral relationship.  I thought I should be more familiar with his work. 

Dr. Whitley's specialization is promoting the RECOVERY MODEL of treating mental illness among members of marginalized communities.  He literally "wrote the book"[1] on creating a working definition of "recovery." 

You can see him explain the working definition here:



As you will see, he defines "recovery" as the display of a range of behaviors which he categorizes as clinical, existential, functional, physical and social.  As someone who believes in incorporating "culturally relevant" treatments, he advocates focusing on the strengths, resources and belief systems of the patients.  And one of the subsets of "existential recovery" that he identifies is spirituality.  Since a lot of people are religious, he draws on THEIR BELIEFS as part of a personalized treatment model. 

He speaks specifically about religiosity as a subset of existential recovery which he deems appropriate for some patients as part of his "dimensional" recovery model.  A little after the 4 1/2 minute mark he says:   

Existential recovery refers to regaining of sense of purpose and meaning, and perhaps spiritual or religious, uh, uh, sense of spirituality or religiosity which people, some people are searching for, and which they might lose if they have a psychotic break, for example.  (bold mine)

Not surprisingly, he is also committed to promoting his RECOVERY Model, and he supports specific governmental policies that shift the field of psychiatry in that direction. 

In order to promote the model that he believes will be successful, he examines models of treating mental illness which he deems as not being successful.  In other work, he bashes the first world institutionalization model which became popular throughout much of the industrialized world.  He also bashes the neo-liberal deinstitutionalization model, which left untreated masses homeless in the streets.  And here, he is bashing a GOVERNMENTAL MODEL towards the mentally ill, which was implemented by small sample of atheist leaders. 

I'm not sure if you can wrap your brain around this, but criticizing a governmental policy towards the mentally ill, is very different from labeling the leaders as mentally ill.   Ironically, I think one could make the argument that some of these leaders did in fact suffer from mental disorders.  But that is not the argument that he is making!!!!!

I know you want to find champions for your cause.  And I am certain that there are in fact folks out there who would support your premise.

But Dr. Whitley is not one of them. 

 1. actually, it was just an article

Offline Quesi

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #42 on: May 07, 2013, 08:01:06 AM »
Oh.  And I know you really want Dr. Whitley to validate your religious beliefs.[1] If you went to him for treatment for a mental illness, he would in fact validate them.  He is really into validating beliefs.  Not imposing beliefs.  Validating beliefs and using belief systems as part of his dimensional treatment approach to mental illness. 

I suspect that if you familiarized yourself with the good doctor's work, you would find it quite disconcerting.  In this article, http://indigenouspsych.org/Interest%20Group/Kirmayer/2012_Recovery_Adeponle.pdf which he co-wrote, you will find a case study starting at the bottom of page 12 (on my viewer, numbered page 120) in which the authors describe a treatment model for a Pentecostal Yoruba woman in Nigeria.  She had had a breakdown after a broken engagement. 

She started out with church members trying to pray away the demons that they believed possessed her.  This was unsuccessful, so she was brought to a psychiatric hospital, and put on anti-psychotic medication.   At the same time, she drew on her traditional Yoruba belief systems, and consulted an Ifa (Yoruba priest) to help her "ascertain the cause of the schism" in her "cosmic harmony."  The Ifa helped put her in touch with her deceased grandmother, and after a great deal of work on assessing the ways in which her deceased grandmother was impacting on her mental health and life goals, the patient made positive signs of recovery.

The author writes "  Although psychiatric treatment and hospitalization played a role in the reduction of her symptoms, the involvement of traditional healing was central to Olayema's recovery." 

And for all of the atheists here who think that is absurd, you might find his explanation of "why" this involvement of traditional healing was central to her recovery. 
 1. And your disdain for atheists

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #43 on: May 07, 2013, 08:26:40 AM »
In other words, he probably wants to review treatment methods for atheists who are mentally ill, rather than saying atheism is a mental illness (as holybuckets is apparently trying to claim).

And the explanation of why he would have spent time critiquing leaders such as Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot makes a lot of sense.  It certainly makes more sense than the pretense that those people are representative of atheists that holybuckets was trying to put up.

Offline Quesi

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #44 on: May 07, 2013, 09:08:16 AM »
In other words, he probably wants to review treatment methods for atheists who are mentally ill, rather than saying atheism is a mental illness (as holybuckets is apparently trying to claim).


Exactly. 

Offline screwtape

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #45 on: May 07, 2013, 09:42:38 AM »
You have summarized the paper reasonably and you will see that the headline, "Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!" is typical Fox News deception.

The study has not been done, it has only been suggested. There are no specific questions for the study or any methodology, let alone results.

It's also not a harvard study.  The guy teaches at Dartmouth.  So literally every single part of the"headline" was wrong.  Yay, holybuckets!
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Offline holybuckets

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #46 on: May 07, 2013, 10:20:11 AM »

" Another strand of atheistic thought involves the political atheism that was implemented by Mao Zedong, Pol Pot, Josef Stalin, Enver Hoxha, and others. Researchers can historically analyze attitudes and policies toward mental health and illness under these officially atheistic regimes for trends and commonalities."

No Quesi, hate to disappoint you and Greybeard, but here it is......

I have a cherry-picker for sale; it's in good condition, are you interested?

Here's a challenge for you, holybuckets, give me the names of 3 historical people who were obviously Christian and leaders, who behaved in the same way as those you have just quoted.

It's not a hard question.
Greybeard, did you just see your side step? I believe we already talked about this.

Offline holybuckets

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #47 on: May 07, 2013, 10:28:40 AM »
You have summarized the paper reasonably and you will see that the headline, "Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!" is typical Fox News deception.

The study has not been done, it has only been suggested. There are no specific questions for the study or any methodology, let alone results.

It's also not a harvard study.  The guy teaches at Dartmouth.  So literally every single part of the"headline" was wrong.  Yay, holybuckets!

Please allow me to answer both of your questions. First, the study was published in the Harvard Review of Psychology and is copyright owned by Harvard. You can teach at one University and be published from another. Second, and this is in response to greybeard, there are several stages to a study. Just because the final study has not yet been completed, does not mean that a study has not been done. One element is called the "proposal", the researcher gathers information to come to a hypothesis, then has enough information to provide to a University or and organization for approval, grants, or some other form of existence. I've simplified things in hopes to at least answer your concerns. Sometimes dealing with you guys is like playing in the sand box, what's next? My dad is bigger than your dad?

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #48 on: May 07, 2013, 10:52:34 AM »
I am immediately drawn to Menkins truism about headlines with questionmarks is them. Something to the effect of "If a headline has a questionmark in it, the answer is almost always no"
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Offline kin hell

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #49 on: May 07, 2013, 08:16:10 PM »
Ahsoholybuckets you're back.

Still leaking that less than honest puke I see.

Didn't your last abortive troll here teach you anything about truthfulness and accuracy, or do you just not care?
Thanks Kin,
Good to see you are still adding intelligent posts to the conversation.

Addressing the proven questionable ethics and variable honesty of the OP (that's you holyb) is intelligent, as much as you may not like it.

You return here with a history. The only way you could change peoples' prior opinion/knowledge of you is by proving them wrong, by proving that you have managed to find some morality in the meanwhile.
So what do you do instead?

You present this disingenuous deliberate self-serving misread of a topic.

Well done at so religiously maintaining your natural level.
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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #50 on: May 07, 2013, 08:20:40 PM »
In other words, he probably wants to review treatment methods for atheists who are mentally ill, rather than saying atheism is a mental illness (as holybuckets is apparently trying to claim).

That sounds about right.  If I were for whatever reason forced to live in the Bible Belt of the USA, and had no support network because I had little in common with co-workers and neighbours, I'd want a therapist who could see the big picture of  patient+environment and come up with appropriate treatment strategies.  I certainly wouldn't want to be sitting in a therapist's office and hear unprofessional nonsense like "Have you prayed about it?"  >:(
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Offline magicmiles

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #51 on: May 07, 2013, 08:21:16 PM »
I am immediately drawn to Menkins truism about headlines with questionmarks is them. Something to the effect of "If a headline has a questionmark in it, the answer is almost always no"

Headline: "Is Menkins truism valid?"

A nice paradox.
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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #52 on: May 08, 2013, 10:01:18 AM »
I am immediately drawn to Menkins truism about headlines with questionmarks is them. Something to the effect of "If a headline has a questionmark in it, the answer is almost always no"

Headline: "Is Menkins truism valid?"

A nice paradox.

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the almost does remove the paradox. 8)
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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #53 on: May 08, 2013, 10:11:55 AM »
Please allow me to answer both of your questions. First, the study was published in the Harvard Review of Psychology and is copyright owned by Harvard. You can teach at one University and be published from another. Second, and this is in response to greybeard, there are several stages to a study. Just because the final study has not yet been completed, does not mean that a study has not been done. One element is called the "proposal", the researcher gathers information to come to a hypothesis, then has enough information to provide to a University or and organization for approval, grants, or some other form of existence. I've simplified things in hopes to at least answer your concerns. Sometimes dealing with you guys is like playing in the sand box, what's next? My dad is bigger than your dad?
Um.  The study not being completed necessarily, by definition, means not done.
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Offline Graybeard

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #54 on: May 08, 2013, 10:13:11 AM »
You have summarized the paper reasonably and you will see that the headline, "Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!" is typical Fox News deception.

The study has not been done, it has only been suggested. There are no specific questions for the study or any methodology, let alone results.

It's also not a harvard study.  The guy teaches at Dartmouth.  So literally every single part of the"headline" was wrong.  Yay, holybuckets!

Please allow me to answer both of your questions. First, the study was published in the Harvard Review of Psychology and is copyright owned by Harvard. You can teach at one University and be published from another. Second, and this is in response to greybeard, there are several stages to a study. Just because the final study has not yet been completed, does not mean that a study has not been done. One element is called the "proposal", the researcher gathers information to come to a hypothesis, then has enough information to provide to a University or and organization for approval, grants, or some other form of existence. I've simplified things in hopes to at least answer your concerns. Sometimes dealing with you guys is like playing in the sand box, what's next? My dad is bigger than your dad?

I have mentioned to you elsewhere that you have a tendency to read things and not understand them. Rather, you take a meaning that agrees with one of your preconceived notions.

I have absolutely no idea why you went banging on about Dartmouth - Have a look at the title of the thread.

Anyway, there has been no study:

Quote
The exploration of the impact of religiosity on mental health is an enduring, if somewhat quiet, tradition. There has been virtually no exploration, however, of the influence of atheism on mental health. […] I argue that atheism (just like theism) is an appropriate domain of study for social and cultural psychiatrists (and allied social scientists) interested in exploring socio-environmental stressors and buffers relating to mental health.

Specifically, I argue that (1) atheism needs to be accurately measured as an individual-level exposure variable, with the aim of relating that variable to psychiatric outcomes, (2) there needs to be  greater systematic investigation into the influence of atheism on psychiatry as an institution, and (3) the relation of atheism to mental health needs to be explored by examining atheistic theory and its practical application, especially as it relates to the human condition, suffering, and concepts of personhood.
[...]

28 All of this demands further systematic investigation of the new atheists’ approach to mental health and illness.

Has the study been done?
« Last Edit: May 08, 2013, 10:16:51 AM by Graybeard »
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Offline LoriPinkAngel

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #55 on: May 08, 2013, 10:58:57 AM »
Mental Illness is a medical condition.  An Atheist should be treated like any other freaking patient.
It doesn't make sense to let go of something you've had for so long.  But it also doesn't make sense to hold on when there's actually nothing there.

Offline Jag

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #56 on: May 08, 2013, 11:52:56 AM »
Anyway, there has been no study:

Quote
The exploration of the impact of religiosity on mental health is an enduring, if somewhat quiet, tradition. There has been virtually no exploration, however, of the influence of atheism on mental health. […] I argue that atheism (just like theism) is an appropriate domain of study for social and cultural psychiatrists (and allied social scientists) interested in exploring socio-environmental stressors and buffers relating to mental health.

Specifically, I argue that (1) atheism needs to be accurately measured as an individual-level exposure variable, with the aim of relating that variable to psychiatric outcomes, (2) there needs to be  greater systematic investigation into the influence of atheism on psychiatry as an institution, and (3) the relation of atheism to mental health needs to be explored by examining atheistic theory and its practical application, especially as it relates to the human condition, suffering, and concepts of personhood.
[...]

28 All of this demands further systematic investigation of the new atheists’ approach to mental health and illness.

Has the study been done?

And nothing in this supports the "made up from absolutely nothing" assumption from holybuckets that the writer is claiming atheism as a mental illness. This:
In other words, he probably wants to review treatment methods for atheists who are mentally ill, rather than saying atheism is a mental illness (as holybuckets is apparently trying to claim).

That sounds about right.  If I were for whatever reason forced to live in the Bible Belt of the USA, and had no support network because I had little in common with co-workers and neighbours, I'd want a therapist who could see the big picture of  patient+environment and come up with appropriate treatment strategies.  I certainly wouldn't want to be sitting in a therapist's office and hear unprofessional nonsense like "Have you prayed about it?"  >:(

is much closer to an accurate summary that anything holybuckets is trying to claim.

holybuckets, your bucket may be quite hole-y indeed - your common sense appears have leaked out. You seem to understand the process of conducting a study, while completely ignoring what the study you posted actually says.

Do you intend to respond to any of the posts about that?
My tolerance for BS is limited, and I use up most of it IRL.

Online jaimehlers

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Re: Are Atheists Mentally Ill? A Harvard study may think so!
« Reply #57 on: May 08, 2013, 12:30:19 PM »
Second, and this is in response to greybeard, there are several stages to a study. Just because the final study has not yet been completed, does not mean that a study has not been done. One element is called the "proposal", the researcher gathers information to come to a hypothesis, then has enough information to provide to a University or and organization for approval, grants, or some other form of existence. I've simplified things in hopes to at least answer your concerns. Sometimes dealing with you guys is like playing in the sand box, what's next? My dad is bigger than your dad?
Yes, a study has been done.  It's just not the one you tried to suggest had been done, namely, "are atheists mentally ill?"  Which pretty much came across as "is atheism a mental illness?"

Either explain your reasoning for why you put that kind of a spin on it, or clarify what you were actually trying to assert with this thread.