A first look at some of the statistical data.

What is your view of the comparative psychological health of believers in God and atheists?

Here is a first look at some of the statistical data from the survey.  Below I have broken down the responses to the question probing what atheists think of the psychological health of believers versus non-believers broken down by male, female and those that identified as transgender:


What is your view of the comparative psychological health of believers in God and atheists?

Female Male Transgender Response
Generally, believers are substantially more psychologically healthy than atheists. 0.2%
Generally, believers are somewhat more psychologically healthy than atheists. 3.5%
Generally, believers and atheists are equally psychologically healthy. 42.3%
Generally, believers are somewhat less psychologically healthy than atheists. 39.0%
Generally, believers are substantially less psychologically healthy than atheists. 15.0%
Please use this space to elaborate on your answer. 743 replies 1,519 replies 22 replies 2,284

As you can see from the above, the majority of non-believers –55.7%– feel that believers are less psychologically healthy than non-believers.


Here are just a few interesting comments that illustrate the depth of thought people have put into their responses:

  • I’ve heard the same type of excuses made for abusive partners and “god” so many times it’s scary. Adherence to religious dogma is an abusive relationship. Your husband beats you because he’s afraid you’re cheating on him? He’s insecure and just wants to be sure you love him. You have cancer? God is testing your faith (he wants to be sure you love him). A massive power imbalance is not exactly a great predictor of a healthy relationship, is it? And what could be a bigger power imbalance than ANY HUMAN, and an omnipotent being? Here’s an interesting little article on the subject. http://atheism.about.com/od/whatisgod/p/AbuserAbusive.htm Or just Google “god religion abusive relationship”
  • The research tells us that those who put their lives into (whoever’s) hands will be psychologically helahtier. Life is much less stressful when you don’t have to make deciusions for yourself, and all your friends are in complete agreement with you!
  • To “believe”, which is to say, to have faith, is in this discussion meaning to accept a Theistic set of claims, without reasonable evidence that the claims are factual, and allow this acceptance to inform important decisions in life, including important moral choices. This is, to me, a sign of severe pshychological deficiency, and reflect an inability to deal with reality in a healthy way without the crutch of belief in the supernatural & dogmas.
  • I don’t consider believing in an invisible being without rigorously tested and validated evidence to be psychologically healthy.

And, for comic relief,

  • I would’ve chosen the last answer, but there are some atheists who believe in stupid shit, too.



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One Comment

  1. Posted March 11, 2013 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    Excellent post however I was wondering if you could write a
    litte more on this subject? I’d be very grateful if you could elaborate a little bit further. Kudos!

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