Regular reader of this organ will have realised that our assertion is freedom to choose and follow (or not follow) a religion is a very important principle, with the only caveat that doing so doesn’t impact on others’ freedom to live.
Therefore, if one chooses to believe that your prophet visited the moon on the back of a winged horse, you are most welcome to. If, however, you also believe that you must slaughter non-believers, we’re going to disagree quite robustly.
It could be argued and has been by various parties that not believing in a creator is also an act of faith; proving a negative is a particularly difficult task after all.
There are those who feel that a belief in something for which you have little to no proof other than the word of a third party (i.e. the definition of “faith”) is a form of mental illness. There’s certainly an argument to be made there but, given that existential questions of creation are unlikely to be solved to a high degree of scientific proof and we’d need to solve the problem of infinite regression, we all live with that unresolved internal discussion. We generally function on a day to day basis however.
Some religious adherents clearly are suffering from a dangerous delusion though and are a danger to themselves and/or others. When your religious beliefs require you to act out the crucifixion on Easter weekend, self-flaggelate for Ashura, murder Cathars for having the wrong version of Christianity or fly planes into tower blocks, there’s clearly a problem of the mind that is impacting physical reality.
Consider then what mental illness might look like from an atheist
regressive progressive point of view;
Full disclosure; I have no evidence of what David Buckel’s religious views were at the point of death but, given his acceptance of two of the key tenants of the Cultural Marxist agenda and the extremely rare instance of anyone only believing one or two of the dozen or so must-believe doctrines, we’re guessing he didn’t believe in a creator.
Chances are he probably said, “Oh God” or “Jesus fucking Christ” at some point quite soon after flicking the flint on the Zippo though.
Unless he was an extremely modest polymath, it’s a safe assumption that the gay and trans rights lawyer David Buckel did not have a full and detailed understanding behind the science of climate change.
Yet he’d fully-accepted the impending doom of climate change as a solid fact based only on the testimony of third parties, like an illiterate peasant in medieval Britain blindly following the village Priest’s encouragement to join the crusades to liberate Jerusalem from heathen rule.
Perhaps he was suffering from an underlying mental illness, but perhaps the religiosity of the climate change pantechnicon and its followers is indistinguishable from religion?
Either way, the outcome is that he’s toast.