The power of prayer: Believing in god can help treat depression


Fellow sufferers, I came across new research of a small sample group that indicate that belief in god can help treat depression, actually it doesn’t matter if your god is FSM, it just have to be some deity we can’t explain its existence. I have an interesting thought though, why would they wait to be depressed to pray for treatment of depression if they could pray not to be depressed in the first place?

The test did not include non-believers so theists should not run to their priests with offerings thinking their ridiculous beliefs have been vindicated.

Another thing, always be very skeptical of medics. They tell you today eggs is bad for your health, then the next day another one tells you eggs is not bad, it’s the chicken and before you know it, you can’t remember what they started with.

Having said that here are the links.

Believing In God Associated With Better Psychiatric Treatment Outcomes: Study

The power of prayer: Believing in God can help treat depression

Study: People Who Believe in God Are More Responsive to Treatment of Depression

About makagutu

As Onyango Makagutu I am Kenyan, as far as I am a man, I am a citizen of the world

26 thoughts on “The power of prayer: Believing in god can help treat depression

  1. Mordanicus says:

    By illnesses like depression, the placebo effect might play an essential role and as such this doesn’t proof the existence of any god. Although theists would argue otherwise.

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  2. john zande says:

    The science is pretty straightforward…. sweet (protective) daydreams release endorphin’s into the brain = Happy feeling!

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  3. melouisef says:

    I sent this link to Ark a couple of days ago but I did not read the article.
    Sorry 🙂

    I know and it has been researched over and over, depressed patients react better to a combination of drugs (prescribed of course) and talk therapy but I do not know if this research was combined with talk therapy and if it only was done on religious folks (I would presume).

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    • makagutu says:

      In reading the three links I attached, most if not all the respondents were god believers even though some were not affiliated to any organised religion. It is curious that those arguing for the efficacy of prayer still rely on medicine. Why if prayer would be enough to get them out of depression should they spend sums of money with the shrink if they could just pray or is it a case of covering all bases as Abe did with Hagar?

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      • melouisef says:

        From a scientific point of view I cannot buy into this because there are many variables that were left out. But then whatever makes them happy – depression is a terrible affliction.

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  4. aguywithoutboxers says:

    I suppose that if one believes in a particular system, then hope in that belief does help obtain some beneficial results. This isn’t proof of divine intervention but merely shifting the focus from the depression to hope in a cure. Excellent job, my thoughtful friend!

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  5. violetwisp says:

    I totally agree with John here but can’t help thinking there’s something else in it, and your eggs story probably holds the key. I always think this kind of health research is often set up to prove someone’s hunch (or sell a new pill – obviously) and, like you say, there’s no point in paying much attention to it. If it’s true, it’s because the delusional aspect of faith provides a false yet effective psychological comfort. But also effective ‘treatment’ and ‘recovery’, or indeed learning to live with chemical imbalances, are different things.

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    • makagutu says:

      The faithful have already swallowed a bigger lie, that a god exists and this god cares about their depression. To be told someone is praying for them bolsters this belief and then a feeling of light headedness. To associate god belief and response to treatment is to associate an effect[response to medication] to the wrong cause[belief in god].

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  6. There is some evidence that suggests that depressive people have a more realistic view than the rest of us. There’s also some evidence that believers (I think they just mean christians) are generally just a bit happier. So, maybe we could choose to have our appraisal of reality distorted, so that we can feel better.

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    • makagutu says:

      Well if the price am going to pay for appreciating reality as is, is some depression, then I’d rather be depressed but not have a false view of reality. But as is, I don’t see a reason to have a distorted view of reality.

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  7. John sums your thoughts up really succinctly. An imaginary friend can listen to all your worries and simply telling them can make one feel better. It’s the same principle as worry dolls. 🙂

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  8. fabryhistory says:

    Hey, fellow sufferer, I gave you an award bouquet on my blog, because I learn so much from you – you don’t have to do the rules listed, unless you really want to.

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  9. themodernidiot says:

    So how do they account for the schizos that try to kill people and themselves BECAUSE they believe in god? Pretty fine line they’re treading with their selective analysis. Especially when the “duh” is what JZ said.

    Believing in cheese can make you happy.

    However, believing in oneself is the ultimate faith needed to overcome depression.

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