Why is it that when some people fervently believe in ghosts or when they follow commanding ‘voices in their head’, these people are treated as delusional, crazy or even psychopathic? These people are given medical treatment and brain-chemical balancing drugs in order to manage their mental illness. Yet when people profess the most intense beliefs in certain other things no one has ever really seen, such as demons, Allah, God, angels, heaven, hell, and so on, these people are treated with the greatest of reverence and social respect and even made into leaders and wise gurus who become rich from the donations of their faithful followers!
What is the difference here? The fantasies and delusions are equally foolish whether it’s the belief and obedience to a psychotic voice in the head or an imaginary deity residing in some magical place no one can see. Religious beliefs should be placed in the same class as mental sickness or any other serious psychological disorder that degrades the quality of life and the individual's ability to deal with reality.
One of the fundamental (but understandable) flaws with modern psychology is its assumption that sanity is defined using the mental character of the majority as a benchmark. But this standard isn’t really objective, it’s subjective and merely based on a relational comparison that is used incorrectly to define an aberrant standard for mental health. Just because many people believe in something that doesn’t make it valid, and just because a lie is repeated a billion times that doesn’t make it any more truthful than it was to begin with!
What are people's opinion on all of this?