What a treat! I haven't read a Medium article in a while and this was a feast. Great thinking and great writing.

However, there are some points that I would differ. I think the biggest contributors to religion, patriotism and other items of belief is identity. The primary way of 'thinking' about things is not rational logic and evidence-based but rather identity. Life is too complex and confusing and so we try to 'understand' it by relating it to one or more groups. We form connections with different groups and these form our identities. When we 'reason' about things, we do not gather evidence and such. Rather, we project the information into the most compatible of our identities. This then becomes the way we decide and accept things.

Rational and evidence-based thinking is an exception. And it has to be. There’s way too much information and complexity to decide on things by ourselves. We must take many, many things for granted. While we can ‘think’ for ourselves in some matters, the majority of matters are decided through our identities. When fear, longing and wishful thinking are added, religious and national identities become the norm.



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