There's an interesting theory that's starting to be more popularized which regards the belief in religion and the supernatural as a virus. Dr. Ray's new book: The God Virus: How Religion Infects or Lives and Culture has been well received in atheist circles and by the public at large. Dr. Richard Dawkins has an excellent video out that's worth a watch:
I use the "faith as virus" analogy quite often and I also wonder if supernatural beliefs systems may be related to a form of genetic mutation as there has been DNA evidence to suggest some people are more susceptible to it. However, this is arguable. What isn't arguable is that when you expose young children to the virus of religion they're more susceptible to contracting it without the proper "immune system" (ie. adult reasoning skills).
To my atheist friends, any thoughts on this? Does this help our interactions with the supernaturalists to treat them as though they're sick and suffering from a mental virus?
To the supernaturalists, what is your opinion of this paradigm?