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Sigmund Freud and Religion

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A 6 page paper Freud’s position on the use and value of religion. Freud held that religion could be used both as a justification for behavior and for restraints against it. He conceded that established religions’ moral teachings could be beneficial, but he also believed that individuals should find their own behavioral motivations within themselves rather than relying on any religion to instruct them how to conduct their own lives. Freud’s view of religion is that it provides a framework in which to address the Oedipal complex, react to infantile helplessness and exercise paranoid wish fulfillment (Freud and religion). In short, Freud’s view of religion is that it could provide an environment for the weak in which individuals could come to terms with some of these issues, but that the nature of religion would prevent such insight from occurring. Bibliography lists 6 sources.

Page Count:

6 pages (~225 words per page)

File: CC6_KSpsycFreudRel.rtf

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Unformatted sample text from the term paper:

whom we have bestowed the title of "great thinker" or something similar is that it is a crutch of the mentally weak, that those who are more highly evolved are above the need to believe in any higher being, any plan for humanity, any need to subscribe to a view that calls individuals to live on a higher plane than pursuing only sustenance or power can provide. Karl Marx referred to religion as the "opiate of the masses;" Freuds regard for it was only marginally more complimentary. Freud rejected religion as having any value, yet recognized that it satisfies a void. He stops short of accusing religion as being manipulative and insidious in saying that "Religion is an illusion and it derives its strength from the fact that it falls in with our instinctual desires" (Sigmund Freud). Freuds Position In his 1930 publication of Civilization and its Discontents, Freud wrote, "The whole thing is so patently infantile, so foreign to reality, that to anyone with a friendly attitude to humanity it is painful to think that the majority of mortals will never be able to rise above this view of life" (Freud and religion). The work that would lead Freud to be called the father of psychoanalysis stemmed from his great curiosity of the mechanisms by which the mind works rather than from any great love of people. Freud was able to accurately trace some reasons for some behavior, and his theory of the id and ego has served as the foundation of most modern psychological theory accepted today. He gives humanity no higher standing above any of earths animals, however, for he links nearly ...

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