Scrupulosity in Religion

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Scrupulosity hurts the most devoutly religious, and it is often associated with Catholicism, although sufferers can come from all faiths.  People suffering from scrupulosity believe that they are in a constant state of sin.  No matter what they do, they anger God.  Usually, individuals agonise over a single idea, such as following a Biblical verse to the letter, avoiding any sort of blasphemous thoughts, or remaining pure — all while ignoring major ideas like the Commandments.  More than just viewing themselves as sinners, they suffer from the debilitating idea that they are unworthy, to the point where they cannot come to peace with anything that they do.

Scrupulosity is classified as an obsessive-compulsive disorder, and it can result in self-chastisement or self-sacrifice to cleanse oneself of sin.  Sufferers damage their social relationships by constantly seeking reinforcement from friends and family.  Doctors treat it in much the same way as other obsessive-compulsive disorders — with behavioural therapy and sometimes medication — along with assistance from religious leaders.


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