Quote Originally Posted by They called me Bruce View Post
'Give me the child until he is seven and I'll hand you the man.' say the Jesuits.

I've seen a lot of arguments about what religion does, what it means and what it says. I've only seen a few things about why it works, and why it only works on children.

These all relate to factors common to post traumatic stress disorder, which is treatable using adrenaline supressors and the emergence of rational reflection post childhood.

This would mean that faith is a treatable mental illness brought on by a carefully developed philosophical trauma. I'm using this as a literary device too.

bruce.
Well, bruce...let me say thank you very much for illustrating my point about the need for critical thinking, both among theists and atheists. Because what you wrote above is such a load of unmitigated nonsense that it rather boggles the mind. It never ceases to amaze me how ignorance never seems to prevent certainty about someone's conclusions (in fact, it seems to add to it).

It is true that it is easy to indoctrinate children into religion -- they are easily influenced, and will readily accept claims simply on the authority of their parents or other leaders. However...the claim that religion "only works on children" is so very far removed from reality that I honestly don't understand where you even came up with such an idea, or such a claim.

Of course, I could point to the numerous adults in N. America who've converted to religion -- but I have a much, much better example to show just how absolutely wrong your claim is. I've been in China 20 years now, and have watched a 'spiritual re-awakening' that has seen literally millions of Chinese being converted to religion -- Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, and a whole bunch of others.

But there are two key items about these Chinese converts. First, the vast majority of them were raised as atheists, in entirely non-religious environments, throughout their childhoods (in fact, when they were kids, it was illegal to teach them anything about religion other than "it is bad"). And second, the vast majority of religious converts in China are adults, not children.

So -- people who as children had little or no religious indoctrination, but who as adults converted to religion in the millions -- that kinda' puts a massive hole in your whole "only works on children" thing, doesn't it?

Then what is the reason? I'm not gonna' say more, both because that's not the purpose of this thread, and because it is a topic I address quite specifically, and in great detail, in my book.

But I'd suggest that before you make sweeping claims, you try first doing a little research to see if they are actually true (that whole "critical thinking" thing that I mentioned in my first post). Because I'm afraid that personal experience (which is inevitably limited and biased) and pet theories (because it fits with your particular world view) have no merit whatsoever without actual proof to support them. And in this case, not only do you not have proof to support your claim, there is plentiful evidence to demonstrate just how wrong your claim is.