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March 9, 1935

Foreign Letters

JAMA. 1935;104(10):845-849. doi:10.1001/jama.1935.02760100055020

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(From Our Regular Correspondent)  Feb. 9, 1935.

Psychology and Religion  The presidential address of Dr. David Forsyth to the Section of Psychiatry of the Royal Society of Medicine, on Psychology and Religion, published in the Times, provoked a vehement reaction among religious persons. He maintained that the new spirit of toleration between science and religion, which led some to believe that there was no inherent conflict between the two, was not supported by modern psychology, which showed their incompatibility more than ever. Psychoanalytic research traced many religious ideas back to unexpected sources in childhood. The "voice of conscience" proved to be the voice of the father as heard years ago in childhood. Similarly, the attributes attached to God by adults were those which had been experienced in the father. The sense of sin and guilt, which showed itself in children about the age of 7, always was a conflict

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