Monday, June 13, 2011

Religion as Narcissistic Personality Disorder

One of the primary symptoms exhibited by children raised by parents with narcissistic personality disorder is that they were taught that they had no right to speak up.  Such people and the therapists who help them refer to this as having been denied a voice.  The parent with NPD is not interested in anything the children have to say--especially if they don't agree with him or her.  He or she sees them as two-dimensional constructs whose only purpose is to reflect well on the parent.  The children are not seen as independent beings with thoughts and wishes of their own.  See also "Parents With NPD".

A recent news items shows quite clearly that religious people try to behave in the same way toward non-believers.  The religious want to deny non-believers their voice.  For instance, recently a group of non-believers put up a billboard in Southern California that simply said:  "Don't believe in god?  You are not alone."  A local politician publicly stated that if it were up to her, this billboard would not be allowed.  She said it sickened her every time she saw it.  Given that it simply says that non-believers exist and are in the community, as Austin Cline pointed out, this is tantamount to saying that the mere existence of non-believers who dare to come out of the closet sickens her.  This is a classic denial of a person's "voice".

This is especially damning because the politician is the very same one who has spearheaded the local movement to put up displays in local government buildings displaying the slogan "In God We Trust".  In other words, this is the same person who intends to use the government to endorse her religion and thereby imply that those who don't agree don't even belong in our society.  As I pointed out before in relation to the school prayer issue, the religious tell us to keep our opinions to ourselves, complain if we dare to voice our non-belief, then make it clear that opinions supporting belief are not only welcomed but mandatory to be a full member of our society.  This scenario makes that abundantly clear.

This is not surprising, really.  Such people are the descendants--both literally and figuratively--of those who once burned non-believers at the stake for daring to speak openly of their non-belief.  It is difficult to think of any way in which people could be denied their "voice" more completely than by burning them at the stake for daring to speak.

Related posts:

Religion as Narcissistic Delusion

Religion as Narcissistic Delusion, Part II

Religion as Narcissistic Delusion, DSM-IV

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