Rev. Todd F. Eklof, of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Spokane, said in a press release today that he plans to deliver a sermon on Sunday calling on mental health professionals to begin considering fundamentalism a psychiatric disorder.
Eklof, whose 2011 dissertation was about the psychology of religion, said in the announcement, “Since the term was first coined in the early part of 20th century, fundamentalism has been associated with a particular religious mindset. Exploring this mindset, however, makes it more akin to various mental disturbances than to a viable religious perspective.”
His sermon is titled, “Fundamentalism as Disorder: A Case For listing it in the APA’s DSM.”
“Perhaps little has been more intensely studied since the tragedy of 911 than the fundamentalist mindset,” Eklof further said in the press release, “a mindset the research indicates is paranoid, delusional, and sometimes violent. Given what we now know, it is no longer appropriate to consider fundamentalism just another philosophical perspective when those suffering from it can at times be dangerous and may be in need of professional treatment.”
He said his message is not an attack against fundamentalism, but rather he is calling on society to deal compassionately with such ideas.
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