Behavioral Health

Mental illness, addiction, obesity, and other behavioral disorders are too often misunderstood as failures of will. The understanding that dysfunctional behavior is fully caused by the interaction of genetic, environmental, and situational factors reduces the stigma associated with behavioral disorders, while pointing the way toward effective prevention and treatment. Naturalism.Org supports the development of psychotherapeutic and self-change techniques which apply naturalism to enhance psychological well-being. Properly presented, challenging conventional wisdom about human agency is a powerful tool for increasing self-efficacy, autonomy, and mental health.

Articles in this Section


  • The articles in this section apply a naturalistic, cause and effect understanding of human agency to the problem of drug-induced addiction. Drugs, including alcohol and nicotine, are often the source of behavioral problems since they have immediate and powerful effects on the neural pathways that govern behavior. Addiction is explicable as a physical, brain-based phenomenon. But understanding that the voluntary choice to use addictive substances is equally physical and brain-based, albeit influenced by situational factors, is key to effective and compassionate approaches to the prevention and treatment of substance use disorders. These points get covered in an article titled "To help addicts, look beyond the fiction of free will" written for The Scientist.

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