Why do Mormons Continue to Believe and Practice? From a strictly naturalistic view, the last fifty years have failed to bring much support for the supernatural claims of Joseph Smith. On the other hand, critics have been compiling evidence that contradicts those claims. Yet, Mormonism continues to thrive and expand, suggesting psychological reasons for the beliefs that the general membership and investigators do not want to disrupt. This paper will discuss the psychological reasons for continued belief. I will include comparisons to the growth of religious fundamentalism in the Muslim, Jewish, and Christian worlds, as well as the general psychological benefits of religious belief throughout time.
Robert D. Anderson, Brad Woodworth