"Psychology And Religion" How Is Psychology Present In Religion? How Might Some Dangerous Behavior Be Linked With Religious Beliefs? Is Religion Useful Or Detrimental To Society?

1110 words - 4 pages

I find religion to be a fascinating subject. I think that there are many psychological aspects to all religions. This research paper is about relationships between religion and psychology and some of religion's therefore-potential dangers.William James, former President of the American Psychological Association was interested in religious phenomena and attempted to understand religious phenomena experienced on the individual level. He wrote a series of lectures which came to be known as The Varieties of Religious Experience, first published in 1902. The entire book can be found online at www.psywww.com/psyrelig/james/index.htm In his book, he says "There can be no doubt that as a matter of fact a religious life, exclusively pursued, does tend to make the person exceptional and eccentric...They have known no measure, been liable to obsessions and fixed ideas; and frequently they have fallen into trances, heard voices, seen visions, and presented all sorts of peculiarities which are ordinarily classed as pathological. Often, moreover, these pathological features in their career have helped to give them their religious authority and influence."These statements remind us that strong convictions can sometimes lead to behavioral tendencies that would not otherwise exist. Take, for instance, the World trade Center disaster in 2001. If it were not for the religious convictions of those involved in the attacks, they would not likely have pursued such heinous goals. It has been my own experience that people are usually unwilling to entertain any notion that defies their religious beliefs. To me, this is an indication that they are effectively being manipulated by the hypnotic control of their own religious leaders and are thereby limited psychologically and in many other ways by the boundaries of their belief system (which seem to be invisible from the inside).I remember once when I was playing a computer game some years ago which contained graphic violence and 'satanic' imagery, my mother, an obsessively Christian person, became extremely volatile and verbally assaulted me about having such a thing in her house, then she deleted the game from the computer. I decided to go for a walk, and on the way out, I mentioned to her that the music playing on her stereo was written by artists who condoned and expressed pagan views in their music. This served to build a tremendous explosion of 'righteous anger', as she called it, because she could not accept that the music she enjoyed was violating her religious beliefs. Although I never asked, I'm sure she avoided seeking the truth of my statement in order to supply herself with a plausible deniability loophole in the event that her taste in music became the deciding factor on 'Judgement-Day'. I walked down the road a short distance, and, although I thought nothing of the thunder and lightning that suddenly erupted in the sky overhead, she was altogether infuriated that I would call upon demonic forces to blast her...

Find Another Essay On "Psychology and Religion" How is psychology present in religion? How might some dangerous behavior be linked with religious beliefs? Is religion useful or detrimental to society?

Psychology of Religion Essay

594 words - 3 pages Opinions have greatly differed in terms of psychology as to its role of religion in believers’ lives. Freud, the ‘father of psychoanalysis’ sees religion as a dangerous illusion, and the suppression of trauma resulting in a ‘universal neurosis’ that is, religion. In his book Civilisation and its Discontents, Freud discusses the manners in which religion is beneficial to society, and how far this defines religion. Freud sees religion as a way of

The Psychology of Religion Essay

1469 words - 6 pages The Psychology of Religion is composed of a variety of different perspectives, which in certain cases proves difficult in determining both the clinical and pastoral implications of a theory. Modern-day psychology has demonstrated possible beneficial results in religious spiritual individuals, however, much of the current research has avoided questioning the “real” presence of the Divine or a Higher Being. Although a century has passed since his

The Psychology of Religion

1491 words - 6 pages fact that they are, in psychoanalytic terms, ways for us to deal with our id impulses without releasing them into society. These can be strongly emotional, erotic and/or aggressive and he says that ‘this is the distortion Freud finds in religious illusions’. In this regard, Freud’s contributions to the study of religion are valid because they conform to post-enlightenment era, as well as the fact that they can be applied to examples of prominent

The Psychology of Religion

1396 words - 6 pages In terms of the psychology of religion, many thinkers have commented about the origins of religious belief. Some of these support these religious beliefs, some don’t. However it is first appropriate to establish whether or not they are actually making a valid comment on the subject of religion or not. Georg Hegel (1770–1831) was the initial scholar to step foot into this field. He redefined God by creating a character he often named ‘Spirit’. He

religion vs. psychology

1772 words - 7 pages useful, healthy, and appropriate feelings at their behavior without damning them for this behavior.” In using RET, your emotions remain in check and you can focus on having a calmer way of living, a deeper meaning. You can rationally talk to the individual in question and act out your newfound way of living. Nobody is perfect and they may be making mistakes as well, only making it worse by carrying a grudge with someone. RET allows one to resist

How is religion and faith presented in "The Color Purple"?

932 words - 4 pages letter to Celie instead of God, whilst Nettie shares her beliefs with other people to inspire the people of Africa of what good things come from believing in God.In conclusion, throughout the book it is significant that faith and religion is very important, yet it is questionable as to how powerful the character's belief in him is. Each character's perspective of God changes and they each form a more personal version of him. Especially Celie, who

How is religion and faith presented in "The Color Purple"?

932 words - 4 pages letter to Celie instead of God, whilst Nettie shares her beliefs with other people to inspire the people of Africa of what good things come from believing in God.In conclusion, throughout the book it is significant that faith and religion is very important, yet it is questionable as to how powerful the character's belief in him is. Each character's perspective of God changes and they each form a more personal version of him. Especially Celie, who

Irreligion in Today's Culture: How our culture today is affecting our religion and is holding us back from being religious

1182 words - 5 pages the Bible by themselves, some might interpret it so that it is fitting with the ideas they are learning from television and the internet. Thus, no matter how definite and clear a rule is stated in the Bible, people will always find exceptions in order feel better their situations. This is dangerous because aside from not learning about Christianity the proper way, the real meaning of the Bible will soon be ruined as it is already being

How helpful is Boyer in explaining or understanding religion? This is an analysis of Pascal Boyer's "Religion Explained"

2062 words - 8 pages belief and ritual, the experiential side, which has to do with spiritually aware states of consciousness, is not addressed. Boyer does address that much of human life is consistent of unthinking, automatic, obedience to ritual belief and thus religion does not stand alone on this aspect. The other aspect, the spiritual aspect, focuses on various levels of consciousness linked with religious behaviors and beliefs in some slight and some apparent

This essay is about Hopper, and how his works are linked with psychology, particularly with the theories of Freud

618 words - 2 pages repressed memory that violently breaches the tranqulity of the present. She states that any image can be related to an ominous and distorted memory, hence allowing it to surface.The first example is "House by the Railroad" by Hopper. It was commonly described as a nostolgic look back to simpler times. In opposition to this view, Iverson states that in our rootless society, an image such as this is a catalyst for repressed memory. She explains that

Psychology & Religion: The Spirtual Side to Counseling

1102 words - 4 pages religion may address these gaps by developing successful theory and research. For example, attachment theory can be seen in terms compatible with evolutionary psychology. The distinction between psychology of religion, which emphasizes how psychology enlightens our understanding of religion, and religious psychology, emphasizing religious interpretation of psychology, has been a long-standing issue in the field, and it is an issue that will not

Similar Essays

Religion Is Detrimental To Society And The Individual

1768 words - 8 pages evidence, people continue to believe in a greater power provided to them by religion. With general relativity and natural selection, science has provided an understanding of how we as human beings came to be. According to class lectures, religious knowledge is obtained by sacred texts or revelation and is absolute and infallible and therefore creates an accompanying religious cosmology. However, the proof is limited to the religious texts and

Religion And Psychology Essay

1045 words - 4 pages Religion and Psychology *Missing Works Cited* Religious faith is important to most Americans, with approximately 95% of Americans reporting belief in God and about 50% being active in church organizations (Gallup & Castelli, 1989). Despite the widespread prevalence of religious beliefs in society, some researchers have maintained that religion and religious beliefs are often neglected in psychological research (Jones, 1994; Plante, 1996

Religion In Psychology Essay

2650 words - 11 pages or current life. Due to these different views on how to life, they lead to different cultures and different way people act inside that culture. A person may be considered “normal” in the United States that is considered weird in another part of the world. While all these religions act differently in society, most of them started close to the same way when a person seemed to have a vision of a person or god telling them what to do. In the case of

Religion Essay How Ancient Is Religion?

602 words - 2 pages the deceased for example stone implements, shell, bones and even food. These items could represent the life of the human or a religious symbol on their belief of new life. The evidence behind this theory must state that the prehistoric people must have believed in new life or that death was not the end, and the tools placed with the deceased can be used to help live in the next life.The placing of a deceased body also unlocks much of the mystery