With the terrible attacks in Paris and the memory of similar atrocities committed in the name of religion, one wonders what is it that fuels such madness. Why would any right minded person acknowledge religion?
Man has an insatiable need to know things. How things work, where things are, how they got there. It is a trait that has helped the species to evolve. It has driven advancements in medicine, technology, warfare, everything. Every corner and crevice of the globe has been traversed. Even the mysteries of the universe are relentlessly pursued.
Human beings like an explanation. Questions do not sit well with the psychy of man. Hence religion, the balm for the soul that explains our very existence. An omnipresent being, who wants nothing but acknowledgement of existence and the adherence to certain, strangely, behavior modifying concepts. This is the basis of most religion.
Faith, spirituality, gives comfort and hope to many. It may not be something that occupies every waking moment of the majority, but for many the thought of something else, something benevolent and meaningful, beyond this life, is comfort that gives meaning to the present. It is also a choice. One can choose to embrace religion, to accept beliefs. Or to not.
African, European, Asian, Latino, Chinese, whatever one’s racial make up, it is not a choice one makes. At a certain point in your life, you are informed as to what you are; how you fit in. You cannot change that, no matter how much you feel an affinity for or embrace another culture. Perhaps this is another reason for people to cling to religion, because it can create a bond where there was no previous or obvious connection.
Religion, spirituality, looking to a higher power, these are what people look to in times of trouble. History, however, shows us that many a skirmish, battle and disturbance has been waged in the name of religion. As far as I know, no major religion promotes or supports war.