Before monotheism, our beliefs were tied to nature. We couldn’t believe in a single “God”, because then the other gods would get angry. When you think about it, this forces some kind of balance. Neither God can get too much attention without angering the other gods.
As life got more complex and the population started to grow, we started having tribalism issues, people would rather believe in the God that was more convenient for them, eg:
Hypothetically, 15000 years ago, someone living by the beach would be more interested in pleasing the hypothetical god of water. And someone living on the mountains would rather please the hypothetical god of the mountain.
Every time these people met, they would clash.
Beach guy: “The god of water wants me to sacrifice a fish”
Oh yeah, well:
Mountain guy: “The god of the mountain wants me to sacrifice a goat”
(let’s just assume that for argument’s sake these gods required such sacrifices).
If bad times come to both the beach and mountain, these people will need to collaborate and work together so they both stay alive. Killing each other doesn’t work as they would both get injured and risk both dying.
So, what if we made “one” God that we can all relate to? Then everyone shares the same sacrifices, the same rules, etc, and we can work together to make bigger and better things.
This is how the religions you know came to be.
But suddenly: Globalism
Some people believed in the Christian God, others believed in other Gods, some still had gods based on aspects of nature. So how the fuck can we make this work for everyone as if we’re under the same roof? If my God wants me to sacrifice a chicken, but the God of those guys says we shouldn’t kill animals, what do we do? How do we agree?
On one hand, it would be easier to just kill them, but they might have something I can use for my own benefit, and it would be nice to reward them fairly for it.
So, we create a new god, and it looks like this:
The God is money, and Religion are the actionable steps to get it.
Suddenly we have nearly everyone working together for the same God, and everything is mostly fine, for a while.
But, as the limits of the new God start being reached, and as people that aren’t enjoying their new God start to see its flaws, they will point them out, which makes it so that more people see its flaws.
People always want change to come and save them and fix everything the current God does wrong in one quick swoop, and that’s why we have other Gods popping up, such as:
- Veganism(if everyone were vegan, it would be OK)
- Technology(if we bet everything on technology, everything will be OK).
- Cryptocurrency(a very greedy one: if everyone bets on cryptocurrency, I will be OK).
- Basic income(if we just pay everyone money, everything will be OK).
- Artificial intelligence(if we are ruled by AI, everything will be OK).
If only “they” believed in what I believe, everything would be fine.
You can see how people who believe in different gods will be angry at each other very easily.
What do you think are the future gods?
Clearing up terms:
Religion: any time all your actions are done toward one single goal, those actions are your religion. eg: “AI will fix everything and I will do everything so that AI will come to be”.
God: The thing bigger than yourself that is included in your goal. (if nothing is bigger than yourself, you’re your own God, and likely a narcissist with nothing but hedonistic pursuits).
You could say the promises your God gives you are the goal, and Religion specifies the actionable steps you have to do to reach said goal.
And we will always pursue the “one” God that works for all of us. However, the only thing we have in common is that we will all die, but it’s not a very nice goal, even though it’s inevitable.