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Religion - Commentary
Keith - 6/ 1 / 2002
Re: Some Questions
http://dictionary.reference.com defines religion as follows
My definition of religion would be a combination / alteration of a couple of those definitions A set of beliefs, values, and practices based on teachings and experience about supernatural powers to be used as a guide in deciding ones actions and lifestyle that is learned and interpreted by the individual.
Why do humans seek it? There are many reasons to seek religion. Religion allows us to accept what we can not explain. This lends credit to the "develop and maintain our sanity" that Volkhvy speaks of. It is that warm blanket in the chilly night. It is a comfort. Something that we can fall back on.
Another reason, that I don't much care for, is If there is a God or Goddess, or multitudes of both, we have someone/thing to blame when things don't go the way we feel they should. It gets used as a method of avoiding personal responsibility or dealing with things we really have no control over. Society today has taught so many of us that it is someone else's fault. It can never be us. "It was the way s/he was raised." "S/he came from a broken home." Yes there are many traumatic experiences (and beautiful, pleasent ones) out there and yes they do add to how our life is shaped, but step up and take some personal responsibility. You can effect change in your life just as any God can.
Is religion hardwired into us? I say yes but with stipulation. Yes, I feel that the need for religion is there because every culture has developed it. There has not, to the best of my knowledge, been any culture without religion. Culture one meets culture two for the first time, they have different names for things and different ways of doing things, but the opinion that a God or super being exists is pretty wide spread among the human race. The stipulation, religion itself is not a physical thing and therefore changes from person to person. Even two religious leaders of the same faith will have different interpretations of the same writing. People are unique and will grasp a concept, but not exactly like the person standing next to them.