Religion and God was, is and will be the biggest mystery of all times. Teaching religion to individuals like children who have not yet the capacity to fully understand it can be damaging. Is it moral to tell children that God will punish them, that they will go to hell if they do not believe in God? I do not think so. They can make the decision to follow a religion by choice, not by being forced into it. I understand that tradition is important and religion has been a tradition for many of us. But if you think rationally for a moment, without religious bias, we will realize that children have the right to develop critical thinking and not be brainwashed by stories that we adults have not find legitimate proof yet.
God and religion are completely invented concept that in many situations is used to scare people. In case you haven't studied history, during the renaissance, the Catholic church used to sell documents that basically stated that if you buy it, you will automatically go to heaven after death. This was basically a way for the church to make money out of people from brainwashing them. Many religions have a set of sins, harams, or whatever you might call them. These basically make people scared of possibly committing one of these sins because they will supposedly go to hell. If someone brainwashes you for whatever reason, does it not impact you psychologically? Religious beliefs turn people into a completely different direction. It's a system of brainwashing, that is installed into a person's mind to make them behave in a certain way, or they will be punished. It's so messed up. People give up their jobs, passions and what not to go and "serve God". My long time music mentor at a violin camp I went to when I was younger quit music all together to go and become a nun. People get so sucked into this whole thing and they basically destroy their lives. This is so messed up.
Religion provides structure and order into the lives of people. Religion provides a template to build strong characters based off hundreds of years of human wisdom and experience. It motivates and inspires people to do more. Religion does not inhibit critical thinking. Religion creates communities where people can come together and share in friendship. Healthy relationships is extremely beneficial to the mind. Learning to let go and not to hold grudges when someone wrongs you to point where it becomes immensely toxic and treating people with respect. All seem beneficence to me
Most of the religious that actually cause psychological abuse are cults, like Scientology. Some religions use shame or guilt to browbeat believers into behaving. Some are completely benevolent, helping believers to deal with personal issues or accept reality as it is (death/tragedy/etc.). This statement is far too blanket for me to agree with it.
Some aspects of religion are moral teachings; Some are community glue. Some are narrative frameworks and linguistic toolkits for making more accurate moral evaluations and statements.
It is possible for cults, etc. to use aspects of religion in abuse, but to say that is either inherent to religion or even notably more common within religion than outside of it (or (net-more-likely-with religion; that is, that religion doesn't do more against abuse than it does to enable or promote it) are all pretty unlikely.
If the human mind in question is already in a pliable state where religious rhetoric can easily (this is relative between individuals; as the prevalence of religion indicates, even the more intelligent of us, aren't immune to the rubbish that is religion- faith being the result of the inability of religions to substantiate their claims of relationship with celestial entities-, as such, while intelligence is commonly implicitly held as the differentiating factor between atheists and religious followers, the truth is, atheists are just individuals who are not sufficiently convinced that a supreme being exists) assimilate into it, then it is does not constitute as abuse- such is the role the individual, by having his/her unique development of cognitive form, he/she is more susceptible to religious propaganda than others. That is to say, psychological (every measurable behavior, the result, expressed is preceded by thoughts that are natural to an individual, for instance, memory tracing, logical conclusions and intuition validation, that are generated by exposure to stimuli; as such, the nature of abuse would to be achieve the result, by exposure to a stimuli, precluding any compliance with what is natural to the individual) abuse qualifies only in the instance where individuals who either explicitly refuse or cannot comprehend religious sales speak, are made to purchase products of religion, and thus far, from the lack of any evidence of activity observed in religious institutions mandating joining their religion, it's is reasonable to say that neither religion nor religious institutions psychologically abuses anyone. And as for children who are still in the middle of constructing their realities, their yeses and nos, it is what we who perceive religious teachings to be wrong at such an age; teaching religion to a child is, objectively, no different from teaching a child that drugs are bad, subservience to your elders is good, and having sex with members of the same gender is bad.
What actually happens is the abuse of trust that gives rise to exploitation from manipulation- this differs from psychological abuse, as the individual, in receiving a religious sales pitch, will have surrendered his/her opinions, beliefs and values to, and be convinced of, the religious institution's perceived superiority; a pattern that will continue in perpetuity, in every instance, due to the individual's psychological ability that is naturally receptive of such religious rhetoric, so there is no abuse involved. By fully accepting religious rhetoric such as to result in practicing it, the individual submits his/her trust and suppress skepticism of a material level, believing that his/her religious acts are correct and are in accordance with the religion's "God", and in doing so, will help him/her achieve his/her goal- the tacit, vague tit for tat promise that underpins all religions (if you really think about it, does it sound like economics? You pray, you receive.). Religion subverts such a trust by using terms like "faith", persuasive rhetoric such as "this is all a test", and distractions like singing hymns, holding hands and of course, Santa Claus.