Religious Fundamentalism Could Be Treated As A Mental Illness

We’re all brainwashed, don’t you know. Get the strait jackets ready! :smiley:

*An Oxford University researcher and author specializing in neuroscience has suggested that one day religious fundamentalism may be treated as a curable mental illness.

Kathleen Taylor, who describes herself as a “science writer affiliated to the Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics,” made the suggestion during a presentation on brain research at the Hay Literary Festival in Wales on Wednesday.

In response to a question about the future of neuroscience, Taylor said that “One of the surprises may be to see people with certain beliefs as people who can be treated,” The Times of London notes.

“Someone who has for example become radicalised to a cult ideology – we might stop seeing that as a personal choice that they have chosen as a result of pure free will and may start treating it as some kind of mental disturbance," Taylor said. “In many ways it could be a very positive thing because there are no doubt beliefs in our society that do a heck of a lot of damage."*

so a belief in God could be called a mental illness, but believing you are man trapped in a female body isn’t?


Whoo hooo! Self hugs for everyone! :stuck_out_tongue:

Honestly can’t understand how people can’t see through the bologna that is psych/soc research. Researchers can get any result they want.

this huffington post site looks like it is anti God. did you see the 13 things the bible forbids at the bottom? its mainly leviticus of course.

Might I gently suggest people calm down a little here? To be fair the researcher isn’t talking about religious people in total, but rather the small subset of fundamentalists. Are the posters upset about this story Catholic fundamentalists? If not, I’m not seeing a reason for offense or necessarily derision…although I do have to say, I’ve met a LOT of Protestant fundamentalists over the years (the folks busily proclaiming all the posters on this thread thus far are idolatrous Mary worshippers who will definitely burn in Hell and the Pope is the false prophet of Revelation) and I’ll just say I’m very skeptical of the idea that these types of persons are capable of being “cured” of their zealotry. About the only change they ever have is when one loses faith and becomes an atheist, which they then pursue with the same fundamentalism, zealotry and extremity with which they followed their former religious fanaticism. “Treating” them to become more reasonable people seems a dubious prospect at best.:shrug:

Bold mine. This is very true.
I have also seen this with some converts to the Catholic Church from fundamentalism. If they bring that mindset with them, they encounter the same problems. Many of them become attracted to radical traditionalist splinter groups.

I know it is not the Huffington Post, but Fr. Barron has a video about why there are so many atheists on the CNN Belief Blog. It is a great commentary, and I highly recommend it. I actually believe Huff may have more critics of God and religion than the CNN Belief Blog, just based on personal observation.–Why-So-Many-Atheists-on-CNN-Belief-Blog-.aspx


Fundamentalism and its often angry, vengeful God can do great harm to an individual and it would be great to fight it, but I’m afraid something like this could be abused. Might not the Catholic Church then be labeled intolerant religous fundamentalist for declaring itself to be “the sole Church of Christ”? Might we not see a crusade against thoughtcrimes that was a feature of Orwell’s 1984?

I appreciate the irony of that statement. :smiley:

You mean the idea of the Church being crusaded against?

I don’t know about “Fundamentalism” specifically, but I think that some people who are able to seperate from cults DO eventually require treatment. Alot of times they are made to do things they don’t want to do and their minds have been abused and manipulated to the point where they may have developed a legitimate mental disorder. I don’t think that mean that every religious person with strange beliefs has a mental disorder. I also don’t think that fundamentalism is the same thing as living in a cult.

Exactly right. Today’s barely practicing Christians, will be tomorrow’s fundamentalists. In other words, where exactly is the line? Catholics who “actually” practice their faith can easily be seen as fundamentalists…you know, the Catholics who (dare I say it) try to follow the fullness of the faith can easily be seen as fundamentalists.

So why bring it up?

I remember growing up when fundamentalist was taken as a compliment - meaning that one held to the fundamentals of the New Testament faith. Most fundamentalists practice their religion in sincerity, but they’re aren’t taught history and the effects it can have on them are truly toxic.

In your post above, replace the word “fundamentalist” with the word “Catholic.” Then perhaps you will what the real problem is…

Well, could be good news-- might be able to help the folks trapped in the AGW global warming cult, vegan cult, as well as the radical progressives. They’ve got fundamentalist religious overtones to them.

Because, like in so many articles that find their way onto the completely unbiased and non-agenda-ed online publication that is the Huffington Post, I note a discrepancy between the qoted individual’s statement (which addressed those exposed to “cult ideology”) and the conclusion of the esteemed journalist. (which refers to fundamentalists) I consider them two rather different catagories myself.

But, this thread is not about cults.

The thread is about the article. The article quotes a specific professional who mentioned “cult ideology”. It is the author of the article’s conclusion that the professional’s statement extends to fundamentalists and I disagree with the author. Nothing in my post is straying from the subject of the article. I don’t understand your problem with what I have written.

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