insanity and religion

I believe that an effort to retain or acquire sanity is a life long struggle.
Religion and atheism both are forms of insanity.
Underhanded beings whom influence society seek to distort or hide the truth on a massive scale.
There is a spiritual truth but it is very difficult to acquire.

To me the label ‘insanity’ has either got to include the idea that the beliefs are not working for the person OR we have to take a stand that we know the truth and they are wrong. This latter often leads to epistemological problems. The former can be tricky because my sense of whether your belief is working (for you, for the world) and your sense of these things may differ, and then we have another set of epistemological issues to wrestle with. I don’t think either atheism or religion qualify as insanity as categories, though they may be delusions in specific individuals. But insanity, that’s a strong word. Insane people do not hold jobs, take care of their hygeine, etc. Of course I like to use the word for someone like Kissenger or Rumsfeld, who seem to think reality is something I do not and seem to think they have the right to do things I do not think they have the right to do. There is an appeal to shifting insanity from its more clinical use to something that means pernicious worldview.

Talk about ad homenin. The trend along this forum has been to attack Christianity. It is insanity, it is Paulinism, and if you’re for it then you are incoherent or illogical or just gullible enough to be taken by the blatant lie.

Just to clarify - I think of myself as attacking fundamentalism, not Christianity. I assume the “Paulism” reference had to do with my arguments in that thread of Felix’s.

I’d agree with Dan~ that religion is a form of insanity. Or, best case scenario, it relies on insanity as it is a cure for insanity. All medicines are poisons when given to the otherwise healthy.

Of course I’m using the word “insanity” much more broadly than is common. Just as I often use the word “addiction” much more broadly than is common.

Now watch this.
I just have one question: was Jesus of Nazareth insane?
But back up. Since you have rarefied the adjective, can you explain in which sense of the word you consider Christians insane and how this applies or not to Jesus of Nazareth.

Why do they need to have anything to do with Jesus? There is a perceived need of some sort. Something is missing, something’s not right.

Same with Buddhism. Same with anything.

Answer the questions. First about the sense and then applicability. But provisionally just consider how sane a person would be considered who thought, not only that he spoke directly with God, but who was His only son.
I mean, forget for a minute we are talking about Jesus and think for a second about what your reaction would be. Would you not consider the possibility that this man was insane in the most ordinary sense of this word?

Right, Jesus sounds insane in the conventional sense. Why do you ask?

Sounds? Well, in your opinion, was he?

Essentially when people say a religious person, per se, is insane, they are tacitly claiming to have solved the problem of other minds. That they know what the other person has experienced and intuited and those ‘things’ should not have convinced them of anything like what it did. But unless they are making a claim to psychic powers, not only can they not know this, they also have no idea what they would believe if they had the same experiences and intuitions. The latter often, it seems to me, an implicit claim - I would know it was simply hallucinations, too much serotonin in the brain, small epileptic seizures, wishful thinking, desire based visualizations (or some other merely potentially misleading experience) and I would never form a belief based on these.

a form of hubris.

Religion takes something insane and natural, then tries to make it more good.
Also atheism rejects allot of human culture and human history, which is a form of spirituality that was not pure fantasy. Souls and spirits exist.

Why are you asking? This wasn’t my approach to the topic.

If this has anything to do with my contributions in this thread, then this is way off the mark. If not, I apologize up front.

I’m saying if someone is perfectly sane, not only do they have no psychological needs but they aren’t psychopaths either - they don’t inflict themselves on others. Therefore, I am somewhat insane, as are most if not all people.

My comments aren’t an attack on religion. It’s not “ad hominem” and it’s not “hubris”.

Sounds reasonable. It jives with the Christian narrative at least, and probably with most religious narratives.

I can’t really say I have an opinion on that. Perhaps some of it has to do with the variety of ways in which “souls” and “spirits” can be conceptualized.

Why the mental contortions? Just answer the questions honestly.

Why do you want me to make a pronouncement about whether Jesus was sane or not, in the conventional sense? I’m not interested in sanity in the conventional sense. It’s as if I asked you what color pants you’re wearing and demanded an answer.

Omar, I provided my working definition of sanity. It’s not the conventional definition. I have no idea if some guy who lived 2,000 years ago fit that definition or not.

Ok Anon I’ll help you out.
Yes Omar Jesus was insane. Anybody whom commits suicide by authority is insane.

  1. He started something he knew he would be executed for.
    2 He knew the law of blaspheme and the punishment thereof.
    So as simple as that Jesus was insane, as I repeat that from what I wrote on another thread about what the cross meant.
    Again the cross was a cure for insanity.
    Have a great day my fellow humans. Don’t waste it.
    You have no need to worship insanity.

Thanks
John

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I don’t think that I would take that stance, Dan. I think that when we begin with a negative, and focus on that, it becomes more our point of view. We can see ourselves as healthy though and in doing that, sense when we are beginning to ‘lose ourselves’ in a sense. But I do agree with you in a sense - there are times when we must struggle to maintain our sanity. But I think that needs to be done by living our lives in every moment in a way which will insure that when ‘shipwreck’ times come, we may easily find ourselves on a steady calm course.

This is simply not true. They only become forms of insanity when they rule our lives…when we become addicted and fixated on them to the exclusion of anything else. Religion may be healthy and life enhancing if it is used as a tool to help us to grow. We all also need something that brings us out of ourselves and allows us to experience something larger than ourselves…whether we call that god, science, the universe. Our religion is our worldview and our personal perspective on our life, how we choose to see it.

Atheism may be healthy because it allows us to put ‘a hold’ on our beliefs, unless it doesn’t allow us to at least examine and see a larger picture than those who simply always belief have.

But then don’t many of us distort the truth by our biases because we refuse to see a larger picture - we see only what we choose to see, what works for us? Does it really matter whether our intentions are sincere or not? The result is the same.

Acquire or experience?

And yet you are prepared to make that evaluation about any Christian you met?

Anon my position is that people handle Jesus with care for no rational explanation. You, for example, tax these fundamentalist Christians to the limits of your powers and then jump through hoops to avoid offending Jesus or your IDEA of him. This object of your critique, fundamentalism, is possible precisely because you separate the myth from the movement. It isn’t just you. Felix, in my opinion does the same. But what you have to realize is that a first century Jew is no modern hippie nor a high minded intellectual and that His Father has blood in His hand unapologetically.
Maybe that is the problem. It was the problem even in Augustine’s time.

What evaluation? That given my definition of sanity, everyone is more or less insane? Yes. I include Christians.

Christian fundamentalism, in a nutshell, is the idea that the Bible is, literally, and to the exclusion of all other sources, the words of God. I think that’s a barbaric idea, and I think so whether Jesus said it, Paul said it, the Dalai Lama said it, Richard Dawkins said it, or my mother said it.