Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Religiosity and Social Ills

What is the correlation between religiosity and social ills like abortion, teen pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, suicide and homicide?

The correlation is quite good. As The Times says:

According to the study, belief in and worship of God are not only unnecessary for a healthy society but may actually contribute to social problems.

The research paper that is the source for these claims has some wonderful charts on the topic. It's hard to pick a favorite, but I like this one:

(U=United States)

Eschew free thought, critical thinking and intellectualism, and these are the tragic results you get.

Quoting paragraph 18 of the paper:

No democracy is known to have combined strong religiosity and popular denial of evolution with high rates of societal health. Higher rates of non-theism and acceptance of human evolution usually correlate with lower rates of dysfunction, and the least theistic nations are usually the least dysfunctional. None of the strongly secularized, pro-evolution democracies is experiencing high levels of measurable dysfunction.

Once again, thanks to Pharyngula for the link.


Peg said...

Haven't read either or any article but that has never stopped me from putting in my pennies worth!
I totally disagree...when a sucicidal or mentally ill person is out of control, so to speak, the first thing the physcian has the patient do is sign a contract stiputlating the patient will not hurt themself by any means available. A contract as being in most cases the agreement that would not allow a moral, ethical person to violate. It is that same contract with Jesus as in the old testament, that though shall not kill (murder).
IN a "religious" society although I can agree with certain things developing in a "religious" society, for religion can umbrella alot of different ideas and thoughts, you may have a break down of problems and ideals because of the fact it being "religious" in nature.
But in a Christian society, one of being a believer in Christ and a commitment to the atonement through the blood of Jesus, your contract has been made when you turn your life over to Him.
Mental illness, dysfunctional problems, etc., due to imbalances or other physiological (sp?) will/can indeed occur rather you are a Christian or not.
I really think the issue is rather you want to commit to being religious or being a Christian.
Even those who worship Satan are religious.
Disease, illness rather mental or physcial will be on earth regardless of your beliefs. But faith can help the mind tremendously with the healing or dying process!
And don't forget that many psychiatrists, pshychologists and those of holostic practices definitely believe in the Spiritual side of healing!
For what it's worth....

Peg said...

One clarification to the comment I just made. Mental illness is often times if not most times, due to a/the physcial problem of the body's nervous system and therefore although it is "seen" in terms of the mind is truly an illness of the entire body.
I base this opinion/information on research, knowldege, and first hand experience.

Doctor Logic said...

Hi Peg,

My reply got long, so I made it my latest blog post.

Thanks for stopping by!