Re: Debunk All Religiosity Equally (D.A.R.E.)

From: Party of Citizens (
Date: Mon Jul 09 2001 - 15:42:49 MDT

Anybody who can prove "spiritual healing" by something as simple as a
research design with two comparison groups, will get James Randi's
$1,000,000 prize for "The Psychic Challenge". I have corresponded with JR
on this matter and it seems such religionists have been well apprised of
the opportunity. Given that they don't take advantage of it, that is
enough in my mind, to prove fraud on the part of all those
tele-evangelical hucksters for whom so-called spiritual healing is

On Mon, 9 Jul 2001, Michael Wiik wrote:

> Some interesting tidbits from sunday's Washington Post outlook article
> entitled
> 'Calling Dr God'
> [...]
> Researchers have found, for example, that religious people live, on
> average, about seven years longer than other Americans. Levin cites a
> study done by California's respected Human Population Laboratory that
> tracked 5,000 people for 28 years and found that those who frequently
> attended church were 23 percent less likely to die during the study
> period than people who didn't regularly go to church. "This holds true
> even controlling for the fact that religious folks tend to avoid such
> behaviors as smoking and drinking that increase the risk of disease and
> death," Levin reported.
> Other studies have found that for each of the three leading causes of
> death in the United States -- heart disease, cancer and hypertension --
> people who report a religious affiliation have lower rates of illness.
> Researchers at Johns Hopkins University have reported that attending
> religious services at least once a month more than halved the risk of
> death due to heart disease, emphysema, suicide and some kinds of
> cancers.
> [...]
> Well, consider this: A 1988 study by San Francisco cardiologist Randolph
> Byrd in the Southern
> Medical Journal reported that coronary care patients who, unknown to
> them, were prayed for by
> strangers in Christian prayer groups outside the hospital fared
> significantly better than patients who did not receive prayers -- a
> finding confirmed by another research team 10 years later and currently
> the subject of a large-scale study at Harvard Medical School. (*)
> More generally, Levin says, a deeply held religious faith seems to be
> particularly effective in warding off death among people who are already
> ill or infirm and wish to return to good health. For example,
> researchers at Dartmouth Medical School examined the survival rates of
> 232 post-surgical cardiac patients. "Deaths in a six-month follow-up
> period after open-heart surgery were 11 percent in patients who
> considered themselves 'not at all,' 'slightly' or 'fairly' religious,' "
> Levin reported. "In those who were 'deeply' religious, the death rate
> was zero" -- findings similar to those from a study of 400 older adults
> in Connecticut conducted by researchers at Harvard and Yale
> universities.
> [...]
> (*) And here's a link to an abstract of the Byrd study (along with
> comment links pro and con).
> Damn, too bad I'm an atheist...
> -Mike
> --
> ======================================================================
> Michael Wiik
> Principal
> Messagenet Communications Research
> Washington DC Area Internet and WWW Consultants
> ======================================================================

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Fri Oct 12 2001 - 14:39:43 MDT