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Kaplinski, Jaan

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Eesti Päevaleht - Estonia | 21/12/2007

Jaan Kaplinski on psychology as ersatz religion

Estonian philosopher Jaan Kaplinski believes psychology is about to take over the role of religion: "Already under Freud, a paradigm shift was looming on the horizon. He prepared us for the fact that psychology could use terms like sin or redemption, which used to be reserved for religion. The 21st century presents a new threshold with the symbiosis between psychology and brain research. This again brings us closer to terms that once were reserved for religion or art…. For a long time, religion made use of such things as prayer, ritual or meditation. Our age offers new possibilities in the form of psychotherapy and psychotropic drugs. Here, too, their application is not risk-free. But that does not mean that psychiatry and evolutionary psychology are going to leave new religious wars, inquisitions or witch burnings in their wake."

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