I am generally in favor of analyzing the arguments of people, without trying to understand their psychology, since it is irrelevant to their arguments.
But when talking to religious people (even to moderate ones), I found out that thinking of our talk as an intellectual exchange of ideas is a bad way to describe the situation. Instead, I feel as if the person I am talking to has a vested interest in defending his idea, which he doesn’t show. As if I am talking to a salesman. Or, if that is not a fundie that tries to convert me but a liberal, as if I am talking to a person that has FINANCIAL PROFIT from the idea that there is a god, and that is the reason he tries to defend this point of view.
In the same manner, I do not like marxist analysis of church history as analyzed only from the point of view of power-seeking, since the evidence for it, is usually assumed instead of proven. But church-history indeed makes more sense, if viewed if not as part of the history of ideas, but as if each religious person (and not only the priests) gets money from the idea that there is a certain type of god, and so the different trade unions try to secure their finances for their source of income. Though again, analyzing history of ideas from a sociological point of view seems an injustice to the ideas.
What do you make of it?