SOUL#15—Christianity Can Cut the Suicide Epidemic in Half!

SOUL#15—Christianity Can Cut the Suicide Epidemic in Half! June 10, 2024

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Harvard: “Christianity Can Cut the Suicide Epidemic in Half.”

You can be sure that if research from Harvard showed that Christians were more suicidal than atheists, you would never hear the end of it from the secular media. But because the research actually shows the opposite, we are told nothing. That cannot bode well for the world’s mental health if secular journalists won’t report on research that contradicts their prejudices. 

The lack of reporting on this research certainly explains why the lead scientist of this study has taken to popular media himself to get the word out. Here is what Dr. Tyler VanderWeele wrote in Christianity Today:

“Our own research indicates that declining religious service attendance accounts for about 40 percent of the rise in suicide rates over the past 15 years. If the declines in attendance could have been prevented, how many lives could have been saved?”Christianity Today

Ayaan Hirsi Ali Debates Richard Dawkins

On the show, I mention a “debate” between Richard Dawkins and Ayaan Hirsi Ali that took place a few months ago in New York. Really, it was more of a conversation between good friends than a debate, but nevertheless, the discussion yielded good insights, mostly from Ayaan. Dawkins hewed to the now all-too-familiar New Atheist mantra that “extraordinary claims demand extraordinary evidence.” Ayaan’s response was spot on, especially when you consider the tragic case of Zoraya ter Beek:

“We have also not protected [people] from the external forces that come for their hearts, minds and souls.”—Ayaan

Without further ado, here is episode 15 of SOUL SCIENCE.

PODCAST: SOUL #15

Is There More Wisdom in Christianity than in Atheism?

A recurrent theme in the recent wave of celebrity baptisms is the rejection of 20th century pop psychology. Are we seeing a spiritual awakening giving birth to a cultural revolution? And are the scientists lagging behind the artists in this new intellectual movement?

Links From the Show

  • https://nypost.com/2024/06/02/world-news/physically-healthy-zoraya-ter-beek-29-dies-by-assisted-suicide/ 
  • https://www.breitbart.com/entertainment/2024/04/29/video-russell-brand-confirms-his-christian-baptism-is-complete/ 
  • https://unherd.com/2023/11/why-i-am-now-a-christian/ 
  • https://x.com/diss_dialogues/status/1765872524754133336 
  • https://apnews.com/article/suicides-record-2022-guns-48511d74deb24d933e66cec1b6f2d545 
  • https://israel365news.com/350414/americans-identifying-as-christian-at-all-time-low-secularism-at-all-time-high/ 
  • https://www.pewresearch.org/religion/2021/12/14/about-three-in-ten-u-s-adults-are-now-religiously-unaffiliated/ 
  • https://www.thefp.com/p/zoraya-ter-beek-dead-assisted-suicide 
  • https://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2021/november/church-empty-pews-are-american-public-health-crisis.html 
  • https://www.amazon.com/Atheism-Dead-Eric-Metaxas/dp/1684511739/
  • https://www.patheos.com/blogs/soulscience/2023/10/should-doctors-prescribe-religion-for-mental-health/ 
  • https://www.patheos.com/blogs/soulscience/2024/04/can-we-help-zoraya/ 
  • https://www.patheos.com/blogs/soulscience/2024/01/ayaans-dark-night-the-bibles-spiritual-theory-of-mind/ 
  • https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2024/04/america-religion-decline-non-affiliated/677951/ 
  • https://www.thefp.com/p/im-28-and-im-scheduled-to-die 
About John Gravino
John Gravino is the author of The Immoral Landscape of the New Atheism, which was the topic of a health and spirituality seminar at Duke Medical School. He continues to explore the intersection of health and religion and the other big questions of life right here at Patheos. You can read more about the author here.
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