Although he had a large exposure to both Christianity and Judaism during maturation, the combination of Positivism and individual work in psychoanalysis played the dominant role in shaping Sigmund Freud’s Freud eventually approached religion scientifically, just as he did with the psyche, and found it to be nothing more than an illusion he could discredit with psychoanalysis.
The Freud’s first opinion on religion was its resemblance to an obsessive neurosis.
Freud needed the Oedipus complex to be universal in order for it to be the cause of all religion and needed it to be caused by human nature for it lead into religion.
Bronislaw Malinowski attacked both of these points in his book, Sex and Repression.
Organised religion indicated that human thought had taken a large step toward consciousness, humans began to bury their dead and acknowledge the individual. s not accepted that people were grouped entirely in hordes, it is more likely that there was a greater variety of groups and individuals. s concept of the totem objects and object relations is also attacked.
PSYCHOANALYTIC THEORY OF RELIGION So, with mankind's inability to cope with the external world and the instinctive forces within, religion was born out of helplessness. Middle Freud felt that this will benefit humanity far more than religion. s whole theory of the primal horde was based entirely on Darwin? Not all societies had totem object that they worshipped and there is absolutely no evidence to suggest that the attitude toward the totem was one of love and ambivalence.
If a member were to die or be killed, they left to rot or be eaten by other animals.
This was due to the limited consciousness of the primitive humans, they could not comprehend that the world did not revolve around themselves, in other words they were not really aware of other tribe member's consciousness.
However, the removal of religion from society would be painful, but Freud argued that the end result would justify the means (Freud 1927) Critique of Freud Firstly Freud drew his conclusions based heavily on anthropological theories, this is easily discredited and has been one of the most attacked points of Freud? The idea of the totem meal is heavily criticized by E. Evans-Pritchard, who doubts that this even happened and that the idea that guilt is handed down from generation to generation is equally discredited.
Secondly, the Oedipus complex also comes under criticism.