Not only does it do obvious harms like those you have listed, it also causes a great deal of stress to people who have to spend their entire lives worrying 1) what god wants (since it isn't at all clear from the bible) and 2) whether they will go to hell, since it's obvious that we're all "sinners".But I wouldn't say religion poisons everything. I think that's going a bit far...if humans don't have religion, they make up some other ridiculous dogma to follow. Witness the nontheistic societies throughout history.
Don't forget guilt. Guilt for being designed (by nature) to reproduce, as with all of the animal kingdom. So, certainly we get horny once we hit puberty. Certainly we have sexual thoughts. One can't help it, it's built into our very DNA to reproduce. Naturally we think about it (all the time!). Yet, we are to feel guilty for this, cause it's "wrong"? It's 100% natural/normal. It's a terrible injustice to make kids feel guilt for something they simply can't help. This is just one example of human desires/wishes branded as sin, or "lack of faith" or self-control.
Happiness Is The Natural State, it is interesting that you brought up sex, I have been working on an article about how sexual desire is so motivating, and that's why most all the religions try to control sex. I should have it posted in the next few days.
Nice article, I totally agree, religion is insane, mentally destructive, morally abusive, counter productive, and just plain bullshit.
I was raised a Hindu but sent to a Christian school from kindergarten to 8th grade. The school made it clear to my parents that their mission was to convert me and my brother. I resisted but was told everyday that I would go to hell by the other kids. When my mom complained to the principal, it fell on deaf ears. I've always been the questioning sort and couldn't understand how anyone could readily believe all the crap I learned in Bible class. Telling kids they are going to he'll because they question things they hear is evil.
Okayharmakit, its bizarre how religion does not what people to question ideas and learn anything that's not in the Bible.
What's your opinion?