The Usefulness and Dark Side of Religion

1. Introduction

This essay will explore the pluses and minuses of religion. The main questions that this essay will answer are how is religion useful to society and to the individual. How does religion hinder individual and community life?

2. The Usefulness of Religion

There are many ways in which religion can be seen as useful to society and to the individual.

2. 1 Religion as an Order

Religion can be seen as a source of order in society. It provides a set of rules and guidelines that govern people’s behavior. These rules and guidelines help to create a sense of order and stability in society. They also help to promote harmony and cooperation among people.

2. 2 Religion and Humanitarian Aid

Religion can also be seen as a source of humanitarian aid. Many religious organizations provide assistance to those who are in need. They help to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and shelter the homeless. They also provide medical care to the sick and injured. In addition, religious organizations often provide disaster relief assistance to those who have been affected by natural disasters such as earthquakes, floods, and hurricanes.

3. The Dark Side of Religion

While religion can be seen as a source of good, it can also be viewed as a source of evil.

3. 1 Big Religions and Human Suffering

One of the biggest problems with religion is that it can lead to bigoted attitudes and discrimination against others. This is because many people believe that their own religion is the only true religion and that all other religions are false. This leads them to view members of other religions as inferior to themselves and this can lead to conflict and violence.

In addition, some of the world’s largest religions have been responsible for some of the worst atrocities in history. For example, the Holocaust was carried out by members of the Nazi party who were following the teachings of Adolf Hitler, a Christian. Similarly, the 9/11 terrorist attacks were carried out by members of al-Qaeda who were following the teachings of Osama bin Laden, a Muslim. These examples show that when people blindly follow the teachings of their religion, it can lead to terrible consequences.

3. 2 Does Religion Give Answers to Man’s Most Pushing Problems?

Another problem with religion is that it does not always give answers to man’s most pressing problems. For example, many religious leaders have been unable to agree on what caused Hurricane Katrina or what should be done about climate change. As a result, people are left without clear answers from their religious leaders on how to deal with these important issues.

4. Conclusion


The main arguments for religion are that it can provide a sense of community, support in times of crisis, and guidance in making moral decisions. The main arguments against religion are that it can be used to justify violence and oppression, can be harmful to mental health, and can lead people astray from evidence-based decision making.

Religion impacts individuals by shaping their values, beliefs, and behavior. It also impacts society by influencing social norms and institutions.

There is a middle ground between atheism and religious belief known as agnosticism, which is the belief that the existence of God is unknown or unknowable.