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I often observe — mostly with wonder and astonishment — that the US must be the most religious country in the world.  Religion is not as strictly enforced as in, say, the Islamic countries.  But it has permeated so many facets of our life, and so many people (according to actual polls)  believe in God or a deity, the afterlife or heaven, punishment or hell and such parallel beliefs as angels among us, that we are constantly bombarded by religion or a reaction against religion as we go about our daily business. Speaking of which — while travelling recently, I read the USA Today which I found either at the hotel front desk or on some communal table in front of the breakfast bar.

That is where I found an editorial about religion, purporting to explain why religion was necessary. I mean, the author — Oliver Thomas — thinks religion is as essential to life as oxygen and water. I was raised in the Jewish religion and spent a lot of time in temple, as my father was organist and choir director all of his adult life.  The only socializing my family did was at the temple, with breakfasts and holy day observances and things like that. I have always believed in a deity myself, not specifically in the way that the organized religions present it (as if to three-year-olds) and still have my own private rituals of prayer and meditation. That being said, this editorial disturbed me. Instead of ripping up the paper or making any attempt to answer it, I put it somewhere on the floor of the car hoping it would go away, but knowing that I would eventually have to deal with it in some manner. A lot of people seem to think that everything is in the world to support what they already believe.  Thomas, the author, is way far out — past the people who, for example, read Ford advertisements after they buy a Ford to prove to themselves that they have made the right decision. Thomas, a member of the USA Today board of contributors (I guess you have to be able to write enough to fill their quota of space) and author of a book titled “10 Things Your Minister Wants to Tell You (But Can’t Because He Needs the Job)” writes an editorial that asks an intriguing question, but does not answer that question or prove what he contends. Read more on America: The Most Religious Country In The World…

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