Just as you can't solve your wife's emotional problem by trying to fix it,
Yeah, and religion can? Oh look a child in Africa is starving to death. Let's get religion to the rescue! Yay, now because of the emotional soothing bond of religion the child is miraculously well-fed and living a fantastic life.
Oh wait. That doesn't happen. You say that "I can't solve my wife's emotional problems" yeah well, are you trying to say religion can? Actually, religion and talking to your wife and telling her to solve the problem go very hand-in-hand. Except telling her how to solve the problem accurately is more effective. You're basically implying that religion solves problems where "telling your wife with logic" fails.
you can;'t understand an emotional connection or need using pure logic.
Yes you can. Anything can be explained through pure logic, it's called deductive reasoning. And last I recall when you use logic and science to understand emotional connections between people it's somewhere along the lines of neurosciences.
What are emotions? Nothing but a vast array of neurological reactions to certain situations designed to keep us mentally stable and physically well (except for the time where it doesn't keep us well).
The biggest problem I see here is that people seem to be judging the entire merits of religion on the mythology.
Then you have seen about 10% of the actual argument.
You know what I say to that? Fuck the mythology.
Oh yeah, fuck mythology. You know, the very things that are supposed to elucidate the so-called good morals to the practitioner. The stories that were supposed to explain unexplainable but now unexplainable occurrences.
The mythology only makes up a very small part of the actualy user experience when it comes to religion.
We're not debating user experience here. We are debating religion and all of its good and evil. The sociological, cultural, and political implications of religion impact far more than simply user experience.
Most religious people know that the stories are suspect and better serve as fables.
But that's not the point we're making. The point we're making is that there are so many heinous morals expounded in these fables and that they should never be part of the experience to begin with. Of course more people realize that these stories are fictional, but the argument here is that they were never useful to begin with and they are further proof that the idea of God that many worship is a narcissistic fiend or that religion is very deceitful.
The mythology and dogma almost always takes a back seat to the guidance, community, and fulfilment that religion provides. People don;t join religions because they want to believe fantastic stories. They join religions because they have emotional needs that religion helps fill.
What kind of guidance, exactly? What kind of guidance does religion give that already couldn't be given without its existence? And you're completely wrong with that last point.
The majority of people do not join religion at all. People are born into them. They are brainwashed and indoctrinated with the values that the religious community expects from them and are forced to partake in religious activity. Eventually, the Stockholm Syndrome sets in and the child believes that they are emotionally secure now with religion, when really all of that community and fulfillment could have been given through secular ways. Now granted, this doesn't happen to every person out there because there are people who join religion because they want a petty crutch to lean on in their desperation. Telling me that people join religion because of its redeeming emotional fulfillment is like trying to tell me that the Roman spectators went into the Colosseum because they enjoyed the view.
Religion provides a community.
So does terrorism. Get enough terrorists who share the same values together and they will treat themselves with the utmost respect and share wholesome pastimes and duties.
So does cultism. Get enough cultists to form around the same cryptic symbol and you have a community as well.
A community has large amounts of people enjoying the same values together. There are atheist communities, there are honor society communities in schools, there are sewing groups for mothers, etc...
The point is you don't need religion to be a part of a larger community. If one cranes their neck the other way, they might spot a community that is all right for them without having to adhere to strict moral codes, lies, stories, dogma, etc...
Religion provides a simple and preset list of morals and rules.
Like stoning a man or woman to death because they committed a petty crime? Like putting more power in men than women? Please tell me one good moral that religion gives that isn't common sense morality that can be learned by humans to form better communities.
Most important of all, religion provides comfort to peoples lives when nothing else can.
When nothing else can? I'm pretty sure there are thousands of things that could comfort you in your time of need. You don't need religion for any of that. But is this right? For people to be lied to and told that everything will be better just for the sake of having them comforted? To warp the realities of other peoples' minds for the sake of making them feel better?
We are better than that. We have cognitive functions that are designed to protect us from bad thoughts. We just need to exercise them instead of deliberately fooling them to feel better, the same way a person would inject drugs into their body to escape reality. But most of all, the number one aspect of this supposed "comfort" is null.
We are not supposed to be comforted. We are supposed to solve our problems or at least try to solve them. We are not supposed to feel better when bad things happen, because no matter how much comfort food you ingest, you're still never going to be the same after what happened. What we should do is take the sadness in and become more immune to its effects the next time something bad happens. Then we should continue our lives normally. All religion is doing is giving a crutch to the people who are so weak and cowardly on the inside when really all they need is more courage and strength to move on. Religion does not give you strength or courage, only pity and feel-good lies.
This is why I defend religion, not because of whether it is correct or not, but because it helps people.
Religion causes more problems, hatred, illogical thought processes, and lies than it ever has helped people. And no, I'm not talking about draconian Islamic nations that most people think of when it comes to corruption and religion. I'm talking about in general: religion has ruined relationships, interrupted scientific progress, substituted a pseudo-hope in the inner mentality of most people, made people subservient spiritual slaves of God, made people do the right things for completely wrong reasons, indoctrinated/brainwashed children from birth to forcibly take part in it (not when they are more mentally mature to make choices for themselves), reduced all sorts of basic freedoms, and all other sorts of unfathomable messes.
And as was pointed out above, religion is a tool, and it is most often used for good
Nope. It is used and always has been used for savage political, cultural, and social reasons and to control the masses into performing certain duties, good or bad. Religion throughout history has been extensively used for non-emotional fulfillment purposes so I have no idea what you are talking about.