The need to belong is huge because “belonging” can be extremely useful. Believing that one belongs to God’s kingdom, no matter how much of a fantasy, can satisfy this need to some degree. But, interestingly, the reverse is true too: actually feeling connected to real people or, better yet, knowingly having the security that can come from having caring friends, can weaken one’s need to believe in God.
Epiphenom explores a few articles which exposes this phenomena in humans. I have written of this in several posts, and extend the hypothesis by exploring how belonging can be partially fulfilled by the Buddhist notion of Sangha, by the passionate support of your city’s sport teams, and by patriotism. Thus I have tried to illustrate how many atheists may be getting their artificial dose of “belonging” albeit via a different route than theists.
A theme of this blog: it is hard to escape being human — we may be more like those we criticize than we imagine.
My related posts:
- Credal Belonging : Buddists, Christians, Muslims, and Americans use creeds to amplify the self-deceptive power of belongingness.
- Your Modular God Where tribal belongingness supports the size of your god.
- Nationalism and Religion: Studies concerning the connection
- Amulets for Buddhists and Atheists : Even belonging, we know we are still vulnerable to bad events. This post discusses how essentialism can offer a delusional sense of protection from misfortune
- Sports Allergy : Where I touch on how sports offer a magical sense of belonging.