Most religions do binds people together but in exclusionary closed belief schemas with entitlement and grandiosity that they have the “truth” even if devoid of facts or contrary to facts. Most religions do not express an inclusive welcoming humanity but instead express group exclusion teams bent on victory for their team’s beliefs, not truth nor human unity. To me most religions imbue a kind of narcissistic personality disorder in which a religions and their religionists are excessively preoccupied with power, prestige and vanity, characterized by exaggerated feelings of self-importance. They have a sense of entitlement or demonstrate grandiosity in their beliefs and behavior as well as may for the religion or the belief, be exploitative taking advantage of others to achieve their own ends (especially so with children) and maybe mentally unable to see the destructive damage they have done, can do or are causing to themselves and often others.
My thinking on religions added to the symptoms of narcissistic disorder include: religion narcissism is seen in a grandiose sense of self-importance exaggerating support for only their beliefs and denying failures in their beliefs, expecting to be recognized as superior without valid reason and evidence to support this. Religion narcissism is seen in preoccupied fantasies of unlimited success for their beliefs and religion, their religion or belief’s power, their religion or belief’s brilliance, their religion or belief’s beauty, or their religion or belief’s ideal acquisition or expression of love. Believes that their religion or belief is “special” and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions). Religion narcissism is seen in a requiring of excessive admiration. Religion narcissism is seen in a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with their religion or belief. Ref
It’s funny to me how people don’t see what an expression of narcissism and inflated egoism most religions and their religionists are. It’s all my religion is the best, I have the best god or gods; if multiple gods, the ones I like are best. This goes from the global to the personal, how I understand my religion or god(s) is best. Moreover, only how I understand the holy texts is right or only the holy text I like are true. To even more relational, how you understand, believe, or practice our religion makes you not a real part of our religion and if you ever stop believing or become an atheist you must have never fully understood like me or believe like me or you would still believe like me, because if you did not believe like me you never where truly part of my god or religion. To me as an axiological atheist or an atheist humanist all people are of worth and equal as humans. I see all humans as equal because equal is a behavior and a value status not a physical state of being thus all can be equal.
So where do I believe we would be without religion? Well there is a book that could be made on this issue itself but to me we would be free from the biggest supporters of pseudoscience, pseudohistory, and pseudomorality. Thus, in general humanity could move on as one, because nothing separates humanity as religion, for at its core it is just fear, control and tribalism. On the whole I view religion as a form of malignant inflated egotistical narcissism.
By Damien Marie AtHope