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Do religious people have an addiction?

  1. secretmemoir profile image61
    secretmemoirposted 6 years ago

    My pentecostal christian mother used to be a chain-smoker.  She gave up smoking for church/God and became obese since.  She has a food addiction.  I notice a lot of church people are obese - is food addiction/gluttony seen as more acceptable that other addictions in church circles?
    From my observations, people swap their addictions to alchohol/drugs/smoking/sex to religious addiction and food addiction.

    1. h.a.borcich profile image60
      h.a.borcichposted 6 years ago in reply to this



      It is possible that many of these people have sought out faith as a means to battle their addictions. Looking for something more powerful than an addiction might draw some people to church.

    2. dutchman1951 profile image61
      dutchman1951posted 6 years ago in reply to this

      If you implying Church people have problems with addictions, yes some do, and it is no more than any normal percentage of society.

      as for Religious addiction, it is more a process of indoctrination, a steady re-enforcement in the mind that the form of worship gets you there, a self re-enforcement of the belief (brainwashing as you would say)

      as for the other assumptions here, I do not think thay are psychologicaly founded, all walks of life have addictions. Being a Christian is not the reason. I have also seen the same in folks who are Wiccan!

      Smoking sometimes is fuled by nervious conditioning, when you stop, you substitute food for the cigaret, lots of folks do it. An enotional crutch.

      Nothing Christian about it,  have you considerd that maybe she has a case of bad nerves and emotional stress. You could be driving her nuts also!....lol

      1. secretmemoir profile image61
        secretmemoirposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        ha ha - yes, she is an emotionally volatile person (like undiagnosed bipolar, I guess)

        My father is very self-disciplined to the point of OCD, I think, and definitely perfectionism.  Could OCD and/or perfectionism be an addictive personality also?  Or could it be more his upbringing (strict, stoic, old-school dutch)?

        I was definitely indoctrinated and has been long and painful process to let it all go, but I feel freer and more sane.

    3. BDazzler profile image82
      BDazzlerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      I have seen that happen, too, and it's sad, because when they find out that what they are addicted to is the religious process and it's not really God, there's usually a very negative reaction.

      However, to say "All Religious People Have an Addiction" is like saying  "Everyone who sips wine is an alcoholic".

      I've seen people truly transformed by God from true alcoholism.  The transformation and restoration has been truly amazing.  And I've seen people swap one addiction for another.

  2. Mighty Mom profile image91
    Mighty Momposted 6 years ago

    Now that is a very interesting thesis.
    Not all religious people are "addicted" to their religion. Like social drinkers, most are moderate in their approach to worship.
    The personality parallels between addicts and some obsessive religionists cannot be ignored, however.
    Some examples:
    1. Need to always be "right" even when the evidence proves them wrong
    2. Assignment of blame to others but not taking responsibility for themselves
    3. Pushing their drug of choice on others so that their own "use" looks/feels more acceptable
    4. Extreme rationalization. To make their own thoughts and actions "right" they must justify them to themselves and others.
    5. "Euphoric recall" is another classic addict symptom. This is the tendency to block out any negativity surrounding one's own behavior, overemphasizing the good/positive (despite evidence to the contrary)
    6. Black and white thinking. If it's not in the Bible it's wrong. End of discussion.

    Yup -- I think you're onto something!

    1. alternate poet profile image79
      alternate poetposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      I agree - I think this is - on to something !

    2. secretmemoir profile image61
      secretmemoirposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      I know some christians that are balanced and open-minded people.  But, I think they are the minority.  Most are like you say in the above

    3. profile image67
      paarsurreyposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      It equally fits on the irreligious people also; with appropriate rephrasing.

      The personality parallels between addicts and some obsessive irreligionists cannot be ignored, however.
      Some examples:
      1. Need to always be "right" even when the evidence proves them wrong
      2. Assignment of blame to others but not taking responsibility for themselves
      3. Pushing their drug of choice on others so that their own "use" looks/feels more acceptable
      4. Extreme rationalization. To make their own thoughts and actions "right" they must justify them to themselves and others.
      5. "Euphoric recall" is another classic addict symptom. This is the tendency to block out any negativity surrounding one's own behavior, overemphasizing the good/positive (despite evidence to the contrary)
      6. Black and white thinking. If it's not in a Revealed Book it's right. End of discussion.

      1. alternate poet profile image79
        alternate poetposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Yes - we can't have them non-believers 'rationalising' or justifying through reason what they say.  I think you are right - we should cut off all their right hands, and if that doesn't stop them typing reason and facts then beat them to death with that special book that is just like all the other special books that we have beaten untold numbers of people death with down the centuries.

        1. hanging out profile image59
          hanging outposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          simmer fang
          It never hurts to look at both sides not just be upset because this sentence worked both ways. .syaw htob dekrow ecnetnes siht esuaceb tespu eb tsuj ton sedis htob ta kool ot struh reven tI

          or not
          lol

  3. Mighty Mom profile image91
    Mighty Momposted 6 years ago

    I've known several people who, in their frantic attempts to overcome primary addictions (drugs, alcohol), have turned to religion. Not that they became religious fanatics, just thought that throwing themselves into God's work could take their mind off the obsession for drugs. In virtually all cases (the ones I've heard personally) the experiment was a failure.
    Can religion serve as a substitute addiction? Why not?
    If you're addictively inclined, it's quite common to take up an alternate drug or habit when you put down your primary one.
    Doing anything to the extreme -- meaning to the point it interferes with your daily life, and the thought of doing without it throws you into a mental and physical panic -- is addiction.
    Of course religionists would argue that their religion habit is a positive in their lives, not a detriment. Exactly what a practicing addict will tell you about their using big_smile!!!!

    1. secretmemoir profile image61
      secretmemoirposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      my mother had to go to every church service/prayer meeting/music practise etc over spending time with her children.  All she talks about is God. 
      When I first started suffering from depression in my late teens, I wrote my parents a letter, saying that I didn't think God cared less if someone didn't attend every prayer meeting.  My mother rang me to tell me that my letter was deeply disturbing and I needed a devil cast out of me

  4. Mighty Mom profile image91
    Mighty Momposted 6 years ago

    The two are not necessarily mutally exclusive. Transformation by God (or the god of one's understanding) is necessary to be restored from true alcoholism.
    But even with that transformation, it's still very common to transfer the addiction from alcohol to something else -- sugar, cigarettes, caffeine, shoppping are major ones.

    1. BDazzler profile image82
      BDazzlerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Also true, the "one size fits all" answer is seldom right.

  5. simongrd77 profile image60
    simongrd77posted 6 years ago

    well this is an interesting discussion and well worth while I would say. I have had my religion problems too and have struggled with it all my life, however I realise now that many of us have similar or same experience so i don't feel so alone or abnormal. There are environmental factors, cultural, parental, familial, biological, mental, physical and many more. These all go into our make up. Religion, theology, philosophy, psychology etc all study these things. I feel we can go round and round endlessly exploring these things and the John Cleese's of the world make good comedy out of it all. High intelligence and insanity are very close to one another, as are religion (or faith) and mental illness.

    I don't think there is any perfect human, we are all a little bit abnormal and a little bit normal, it's a spectrum. Who is really the abnormal one, the doctor prescribing some mind controlling drug to zomby out the persons' faculties or the person struggling with life's problems and their own mind?

    We all need a role model, I think. And so far the best most trust worthy one I can find is Jesus Christ. Others may say I am weak and need to be strong in myself because they don't want to admit there is a better role model than themself. The doctors and lawyers and intelligentsia etc are the leaders and role models of our society but if you get to know them they are no better than the rest of us but they have the income, position and power given to them by our society. The rest of us don't have those resources so are more likely to turn to God for help in time of need. If they don't need God then they won't find Him. Then again some of us who do turn to God may not be good role models either and turn others off God by our bad example which means they are no better than the leaders of our society afore mentioned.

    Hence we who follow Jesus Christ, it behooves us to not be hipocrites but rather be good examples, good role models.

    1. alternate poet profile image79
      alternate poetposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Well balanced answer I think.  The problem with your reasonable position is that christ as a role model is a good idea, but the role models who stand between you and your christ, or god, are not. 

      You can see the defenders of the christ that you can reasonably follow in these forums - mindless dribbling muppets who would have us believe that their god is a hate filled psycopath and that not following one of ther various bigoted paths consigns you to burn in some hell of their imagination.

      Don't let them turn you away from what you believe onto their pathway toward the extinction of the human race.

      1. simongrd77 profile image60
        simongrd77posted 6 years ago in reply to this

        thanks for the interest. hmmmm I did not say that role models between me and 'my christ' as you put it are not a good idea. There are plenty of other good role models, however I have chosen Him as my best one. I have learned and benefitted heaps from many living and past people, even those who openly profess that they don't subscribe to my Christ.

        Yes I agree with you, bigoted and mindless believers are only fooling themselves. I also agree with you the human race is not on a pathway to extinction. The reason why we may differ on. I personally think and believe the human race would have already self destructed except for the God of grace and forgiveness and love that he has toward us mortals because of  'the Christ' that I believe in. How's that for a turn around?

        Have a good week friend

        1. alternate poet profile image79
          alternate poetposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          An honest and sensible christian - what a refreshing change!  Nice to see you here and look forward to wrangling with you again big_smile

          1. secretmemoir profile image61
            secretmemoirposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            yes, open-minded christians are a rare breed

  6. Mighty Mom profile image91
    Mighty Momposted 6 years ago

    paarsurrey -- touche and absolutely correct. the charcteristics i defined typify addicts/alcoholics. typically those in their disease have turned away from spirituality and found their "god" in a bottle, pipe or pill.
    the obsesssive comes in many varieties.

    simongrd77 -- we all do need a role model, for sure. however, following Jesus or pursuing a direct spiritual path to a god of one's understanding is not enough for some people. there really are people with mental illnesses that are chemical in nature and their brains need to be rebalanced by a professional.
    as you rightly point out, we are all human. we are all partially normal and partially abnormal (and some of us are sicker than others). what works for one may not be enough or the right solution for someone else. tolerance is a gift!

    1. alternate poet profile image79
      alternate poetposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      No he is not correct.  He is saying that reason and facts are all nonsense and his book is the only fact or reason needed.

      As for the obsession well  . . . . .

    2. simongrd77 profile image60
      simongrd77posted 6 years ago in reply to this

      I want to reply Mighty Mom but the screen pops up under alternate poet.
      Anyway thanks for comment. Yes I do have considerable experience with mental illness and i agree with you some need help to adjust abnormalities in brain function. I think this is just an extension of herbal remedies and other medicines we take for ailments.

      When a family is struck down with a sick member, anything, downes syndrome, cerebral palsy etc etc cancer etc, I personally think it brings out the love and care qualities in us, hopefully. I think mental illness needs to be treated similarly. Individuals who suffer mental incapacitation need help and care but they also themself need to fight harder and learn to manage their condition. The examples above show that all in a family are affected. It becomes our particular journey. Whatever life throws at us serves to enrich us. Have you noticed famous and successful people who get addicted often get healed again with a lot of hard work.

      Its too easy for too many to sit around and stay sick sucking on society and all of us. Indeed it has got to the point where it pays to be sick, and the medicos get paid too. Perhaps this is the real sickness!! and hipocrasy. Alas, the governments rock and reel trying to fix all problems. I suppose it is all a matter of balance, however what we need to ask is why and where is all this sickness coming from???

  7. Mighty Mom profile image91
    Mighty Momposted 6 years ago

    I know, but I was trying to be kind.
    I'm feeling a we bit calmer than yesterday, although that's subject to change at a moment's notice, given the right provocation big_smile.

    1. alternate poet profile image79
      alternate poetposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      big_smile    let me think now  . . . . . . . . .

  8. profile image67
    paarsurreyposted 6 years ago

    Do religious people have an addiction?

    I think the Atheists Agnostics Humanists are addicted to non-belief?

    1. BDazzler profile image82
      BDazzlerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Again, this is an over-generalizations.  One of my best friends in the world is an agnostic/atheist/materialist (i.e he does not believe in the supernatural at all)

      He's not addicted to anything, this just seems most reasonable to him.

      Now, I do think some people are addicted to the adrenaline rush they get from arguing about it, but it doesn't matter which side of the argument you're on for that addiction.

      Any habit (arguing about religion included) can become an addiction. But just because an addiction is possible, doesn't mean everyone who has the behavior is addicted.

    2. earnestshub profile image89
      earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      addicted to non belief eh?
      That is funnier than you think! One does not become addicted to non belief in the tooth fairy, it just happens as you begin to think, unless you are indoctrinated into religious belief that is.
      Just a progression from belief in the tooth fairy story really. smile

      1. BDazzler profile image82
        BDazzlerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        My nephew informed me that the reason the tooth fairy visits him and not me is because I'm old, my brother (his dad) informed me that it was likely depreciation due to age ... my teeth just aren't as valuable as the used to be.

        1. earnestshub profile image89
          earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          Yeh! What happened to Santa's attitude as well.

          I just copped a no Santa onslaught from the 5 year old twins who unkindly pointed out that we don't have a chimney! smile

          1. hanging out profile image59
            hanging outposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            obvious flaw in that doctrine :LOL:

            and i don't have any stockings either

            1. earnestshub profile image89
              earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              The 6 year old discounted my worth to the tooth fairy too!

              He told me "Your teeth are old granpa, if you lose any you won't get much for them off the tooth fairy!
              All this while he's holding a shiny dollar coin and smiling though the latest gap! lol

          2. BDazzler profile image82
            BDazzlerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            No Santa? Crap ... and I've wasted all this time being good...

            1. earnestshub profile image89
              earnestshubposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              5 year old twin girls are extremely dangerous to myths! At least these two are. smile

              1. BDazzler profile image82
                BDazzlerposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                When my dad told me about Santa, he explained the historical traditions ... I think out of context it would have been frustrating, but with the history and tradition, getting let in on "the secret" was kind of cool.

  9. hanging out profile image59
    hanging outposted 6 years ago

    do religious people have AN addiction?
    The Pharisees said "why do you hang around with those types of people Jesus?" to which Jesus said, "the healthy and whole have i not come to claim but those that need healing".
    Jesus hung around with sick people, disabled people, people who were hard to love because they resembled the homeless (no offense intended) on our streets today, with ragged clothes, in the depths of poverty, some even with leprosy. Indeed it was probably some freak show audience jerry springer would have been proud of.
    The same today. There is a saying, "you have to be at the bottom in order to look up". Along the same lines christ said. "For the glory of God is this man disabled". The man would look to up and up is where God is. Healthy people just continue on and think, i am okay why drag God into it?!
    So a lot of people, scrap that but remember it, I used to smoke cigarettes, when i came to the Lord, He, while trying to clean up my life, asked (impressed) me to stop smoking. I did, eventually. Thank God i was not smitten when i bought that last pack in rebellion and frustration. God met me at my frustration and during that battle (my pot habit i didn't even notice disappear). Today i do not smoke and haven't for, i dunno now exactly how long, a long time. Do i weigh more, yes. I am 6 foot and weigh 203 lbs-213 lbs, 33-43 lbs more than ever in my adult life from my constant weight of 170 lbs. I am not obese. People say i look good, i have a one ripple abdomen lol.
         When handled properly, I will just briefly say "falling on the rock, jesus christ" too handle our battles and distresses; we do not trade in one addiction for another. God (lol and hehe) SMITES!! each addiction to death and the smoker, cocaine addict, alcoholic whatever, depressed, bipolar individual can live a life free of these things.
    Falling (or turning to, even praying about the situation) on the rock, i call it: Jesus help me, and he is ever failthful to do just that, but ya ought not to go and buy a pack the next day! You need to drive past that store and thank Him for His strength.
    God is faithful
    what no bible quotes????

    1. profile image67
      paarsurreyposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      No, it is the irreligious who are addicted; they enjoy living in doubts and cofusion, in my opinion.

  10. pisean282311 profile image56
    pisean282311posted 6 years ago

    religion is itself a big time addiction...why they people need any other form of addictions?...

    1. profile image67
      paarsurreyposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      atheism is itself a big time addiction...why people need any other form of addictions?...

      nevetheless this addiction is curable; just don't be violent and follow the Truth

  11. luvpassion profile image60
    luvpassionposted 6 years ago

    I like caffine, not because I can't help it, because I choose it...saying someone is addicted to something is silly. They do what they do because they want to do it. Nobody twists their arms...I don't believe in addiction. tongue

    1. profile image0
      Home Girlposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      You might believe or not whatever you want, but addiction does exist and it a serious problem. A lot of people suffer from it and it is not easy to get rid of , because it makes you obsessive with it, and for it you can betray or even kill somebody to get what you want. Addicted people - they lie to themselves and others and they ruin everybody's life, like their family's.
      I know it all too well. Addiction to religion might look innocent enough, but if you neglect your children for it, then it is not that innocent any more.

  12. Jerami profile image77
    Jeramiposted 6 years ago

    I've never met a single person that didn't have one kind of addiction or another.  Drinking, smoking, Playing pool, or fishing, Etc,Etc,

    1. secretmemoir profile image61
      secretmemoirposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      you're probably right - some people are addicted to work, internet, hubpages...

  13. Jerami profile image77
    Jeramiposted 6 years ago

    I've just finished my addictive two ups of coffee and it's time for me to go out into the world to work.
       Yea .. Finishing a big paint job today...  It's payday.

  14. profile image67
    paarsurreyposted 6 years ago

    Do religious people have an addiction?

    I think the irreligious people are more addicted than the religious.

 
working