I relate to spirituality, & metaphysical speculation–but I think it’s past time that we let go of religion per se. Still, the persistence of organized religion is not a mystery. If you face life straight on, it can be terrifying, to most people. Many people just don’t have the inner resources to deal with life’s uncertainties–and the one certainty, death.
“Religion is the opiate of the people” –that’s not just whistlin’ dixie. Maybe it should be “the xanax of the people” now. But the adage, either way, has a certain contemptuous ring, whereas think of how opiates & xanax type drugs are used (non-recreationally). They’re used to deal with pain, and fear; to deal with the terror of facing life straight on.
I have no contempt for people who embrace religion, even foolish religion, just as I don’t have contempt for a child who’s terrified to go outside because he saw someone shot dead out there.
Stephen King, talking to someone who is an atheist, said, “You don’t believe in God? How can you bear it?”