Is Faith Delusion? Paperback
Why religion is good for your health
by Andrew Sims;
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Is Faith Delusion?
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This book starts by looking at, and giving reasons for, the connection and the division between Christian faith and psychiatry. It asks whether science challenges Christians involved with psychiatry, as patients or professionals, and whether the spiritual needs of patients are recognised. The author examines the scope and use of the neuro-sciences and considers cause and effect, natural selection and determinism. He explores the overlap (and the difference) between psychiatric symptoms and religious belief, the possible association between demon possession and mental illness, and the idea that some people are intrinsically religious and some are not. The variations of personality are examined, with their implications for belief.
Posited as a statement, that faith is delusion is always hostile, but outcome studies (reviewed here) show that in general religious belief and practice convey good mental health. Religious faith and mental illness are different, and their concepts come from different world-views. A consideration of them in relation to each other is long overdue.
The author is a former Professor of Psychiatry and President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, and has also been Chairman of their Spirituality and Psychiatry Special Interest Group, so is exceptionally well qualified to address the subject. Although the book is technically proficient, it is aimed at the general reader and is illustrated with stories, brief case histories and anecdotes.
Is Faith Delusion? by Andrew Sims was published by Bloomsbury Publishing PLC in March 2009 and is our 54438th best seller. The ISBN for Is Faith Delusion? is 9781847063403.
Reviews of Is Faith Delusion?
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Is Faith Delusion?J.Nicholas Latham, via The Good Book Stall
This book is a much needed and welcome '...popular account of the psychiatric dimensions of religion [and] of belief in God' (p. ix). Too often, a patient's spirituality is not accorded the respect or place it holds in their lives (as this reviewer knows in his role as a Chaplain to two Forensic Psychiatric Clinics). All patients and staff in our psychiatric hospitals, besides the general reader, will gain much from Professor Sims' observations and suggestions, and confidence from his assertions that 'there is substantial evidence that religion is highly beneficial for all areas of health, and especially mental health. Prayer has a positive effect upon the outcome of mental illness in the vast majority of cases.' (p. 116).
Among the topics he examines are the history of the relationship between psychiatry and religion, 'Delusion is a Psychiatric Term' (chapter 6), working with patients with a religious belief (applicable to many Faiths), and demon possession. The final chapter brings his argument together in an effective question and answer format. There are minimal footnotes and an index. His material is well laid out, and he writes in an attractive and straightforward manner.
This is an excellent addition to psychiatric literature, and, it is hoped, will encourage a greater understanding and appreciation of faith in the treatment of patients.
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Details for Is Faith Delusion?
|Page last updated||30th June 2017|
|Author / Artist||Andrew Sims|
|Publisher||Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (March 2009)|
|Number of Pages||240|