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Our earliest experiences

Discussion in 'Psychology' started by Mock Turtle, May 23, 2020.

  1. Mock Turtle

    Mock Turtle Compassion, understanding, and tolerance.
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    Religion:
    Often the quickest path from ignorance to arrogance
    Sigmund Freud tackled religion in great detail and had several ideas about it. One of his theories was that religion stems from the individual's experience of having been a helpless baby totally dependent on its parents. The infant sees its parents as all-powerful beings who show it great love and satisfy all its needs. This experience is almost identical to the way human beings portray their relationship with God. Freud also suggested that childhood experiences caused people to have very complex feelings about their parents and themselves, and religion and religious rituals provide a respectable mechanism for working these out.

    From here:

    BBC - Religions - Atheism: Reasons people choose atheism

    Anyone have anything to say on this? Seems to me to be a possible example of prototypical experiences - that first experienced possibly affecting our subsequent beliefs and/or behaviour.
     
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  2. Israel Khan

    Israel Khan Well-Known Member

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    I doubt it, because many religions do not perceive gods as parent figures, and that relationship with God described in the OP mainly describes the relationship between the Abrahamic God (except Islam) and the believers, who see him as father. There is certainly a fringe idea that Muhammed didn't have a real father figure in his life and that is why he didn't refer to Allah as father and condemned those who did. Childhood upbringing can be seen to be the reason why many cult leaders start their groups in the modern day, because their childhoods upbringing is in the light of history and therefore the comparison can be examined. But those are fringe groups.

    But the ancient religions aren't like those religions, as they are way too complex and mysterious. I think that culture, tribal traditions, totemism, fetishism, survival and the world around them played more of a role. For instance, the San's view of gods, and the Supreme God Cagn, seems to come from their reverence for animals rather than parents and the qualities they see in animals, as the gods are seen as actual animals, Cagn being a mantis. They were also rather deistic as the gods didn't play much of a role in their lives.
     
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  3. Mock Turtle

    Mock Turtle Compassion, understanding, and tolerance.
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    Religion:
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    I just wonder if it has any relevance to our notions of hierarchy - and expectations of such - possibly deriving from our experiences as babies.
     
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  4. Israel Khan

    Israel Khan Well-Known Member

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    I definitely think that has a role to play in Christianity.
     
  5. Mock Turtle

    Mock Turtle Compassion, understanding, and tolerance.
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    Let's face it, if there were a more prototypical environment for any such experience it would have to be In Utero. :baby:
     
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  6. Deidre

    Deidre Follow thy heart

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    Interesting connections. This could be why indoctrination works so very well in a child's life, when it comes to religion, and some bad ideologies in general. As an adult, my idea now of the supernatural isn't anywhere near what I was taught as a kid by my parents and pastors/priests. As a kid, I viewed God as something to fear only, whereas now I view Him as love.
     
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