Confounding

Apparently, religion is no more likely than any other kind of group affiliation to be associated with either charity or emotional well-being.

So the argument that religion provides a positive contribution in these areas may like saying that baseball is the medical panacaea because baseball players are healthier than the population average - even though this may only be due to their getting a bit more exercise than the overall population average (but a lot less than they would if they had played soccer instead)

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