Religious people are less stressed

There’s a new study that seems to indicate religious people have┬áless┬ástress, and appear less worried about making mistakes than their secular counterparts. The study indicates something I’ve always known about religious people: they generally take a hands off attitude towards life.

Think about this: when you are certain this life is only one form of existence, the only thing you have to worry about is pleasing your God, and beyond that, everything is smooth as silk. When you’re an atheist, you’re profoundly aware of the brevity of your existence, and selfishly seek to prolong it. That, in turn, makes you far more likely to agonize over the decisions you make in your life. It’s the only one you have, so naturally you want to make the most of it.

I realize people feel stress is a negative thing, but it is simply the way your body tries to communicate danger to you. Religious people are obviously less aware of it because they care less about staying alive than non-believers do. Why wouldn’t they? Lots of religious folks live in poor conditions, and heaven is the ultimate vacation destination. It’s also a steaming pile of bullshit, but that isn’t the point.

So religion makes you more numb to the outside world. Does that sound like a reason to start believing?

Comments (3)

  • avatar


    I admit that some days it would be nice to take that mental vacation. However…. it’s very difficult to convince myself not to worry and stress about the random shitstorms of this life because there’s a magical Disneyland waiting on the other side. I can’t brainwash myself into believing something like that in order to have that “peace of mind.” I’ve often wondered why some people who were never particularly religious had their “come to Jesus” moment – did they encounter that 1 final shitstorm where they couldn’t handle the stress of finding their own solution, or worse, confronting their own failings, and passed it off to a Higher Being?

    Religious beliefs crop up in the weirdest situations – 1 woman I knew (but no friend!) got pissed off at some married boyfriend and went to his house and threw rocks through all his windows. She wouldn’t fess up, even though the cops questioned her about it weeks later. She said (no shit) that she didn’t need to confess to the cops because God was already punishing her from making her stress out about getting caught. I mean, WTF.

  • avatar


    I actually tend to think theists aren’t as stressed because demographically speaking, they aren’t as intelligent (based on education), ambitious (based on income level) and therefore have a limited amount of stress compared to an average atheists (who, demographically speaking, are more educated and are at higher income brackets). Since religion is a coping mechanism; I suspect being able to believe that when bad shit happens, it “is in God’s hands” or “God will work it out” or whatever –must be an extremely powerful numbing agent.

    In my particular brand of atheism, BECAUSE I believe that this life is all we have, when stressful situations occur, I am able to say, “Well I lost my job, but I’m still alive and I’m going to make the best choices and do the hard work it takes” rather then rely on anyone else getting me out of a jam. If someone dies, as terrible as it is, I know that it’s a natural part of life that we all will go through and whoever died only had 37 or 82 years (or whatever) to give us and I feel really lucky to have known that. Atheism can be extremely comforting if you put things in perspective.

  • avatar


    So ignorance really is bliss I suppose.

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