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Does religion make people more insular

or are people who are naturally more insular more likely to join an organized religion?

Thinking about all the times someone (family, etc) has gotten more involved in church, and the more time they spend there, the more short tempered they are with everyone else. Then when they relax on the constant involvement, suddenly their niece having a pink streak in her hair or the neighbor having a cookout with a keg isn't the end of the world, where a few weeks earlier it was viewed as a personal assault on their morality.

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Asked by NotPanicking at 11:44 PM on Oct. 2, 2012 in Religious Debate

Level 51 (421,174 Credits)
Answers (19)
  • Interesting thoughts but I don't think one results in the other. I just think people are who they are and it is the way that they, themselves react to different things or settings or relationships.

    Answer by Dardenella at 12:01 AM on Oct. 3, 2012

  • I don't feel this to be true. Yes, Church and the community of the congregation brings a solidarity which to outsiders may look at us as insular. But, I have a life outside of church, with my friends and family.
    For me, believing in God certainly makes it easier for me to accept the things that I can't change. I leave it up to God.
    But at the same time, I respect those that don't believe in a higher being and am friends with them.

    Answer by PMSMom10 at 12:05 AM on Oct. 3, 2012

  • But, I have a life outside of church, with my friends and family.

    There's no "all" in any situation, I just wonder when I see things like the relative who has skipped out on every family function for nearly a year now. Her fb features all her assorted church activities. It's slowly tapered off the past few months, then suddenly she makes it to one. It's that much more awkward because she skipped one a few months ago for the same type of event, but for someone much more closely related.

    I use this as an example because it's right there going on before me. Got a text saying we need to do lunch earlier, after months of not even getting a reply. It's not the only one I can think of - I have cousins who are back and forth all about church and looking down their nose at other cousins, or more laid back and not going to their assorted young couples groups.

    Comment by NotPanicking (original poster) at 12:15 AM on Oct. 3, 2012

  • It seems she's chosen to put church first. For me, God is integeral part of my life but church is just a building to worship. It would be a cold day in hell before I put "church" before family.
    Could she be using church as an excuse NOT to attend family events? Makes for a good excuse if you feel your life belongs within those four walls. I don't buy it. God is with me everywhere I go.
    I suppose it would depend on the individual but I still feel the same. My answer is no.

    Answer by PMSMom10 at 12:22 AM on Oct. 3, 2012

  • May be some religions make people more insular but Islam never make people insular.

    Answer by kity-bity at 1:55 AM on Oct. 3, 2012

  • Never say never. That's a pretty big word.

    Answer by Ballad at 2:02 AM on Oct. 3, 2012

  • Depends on the person, depends on the religion. I like beer, and I don't care how other people decorate themselves.

    Answer by RyansMom001 at 5:16 AM on Oct. 3, 2012

  • I really don't like organized religion. If you do fine whatever but if you turn into a crazed judgmental looney tune I don't even care if you avoid me, I actually prefer it lol IMO religion should complement you, complete you not make you into a nut. I think it depends on the person, religion, and what they take from it's teachings. you can have two people read the same bible, quran, ect. and get a crazy person and a sane one with two different beliefs based on what the read or where taught.

    Answer by skinnyslokita at 8:26 AM on Oct. 3, 2012

  • I don't believe that religion "makes" people any particular way. People makes choices and they always feel compelled to give a reason (or an excuse) for those choices. Sometimes people use religion as an excuse. Comedian Flip Wilson always said "the devil made me do it." By the same token, people sometimes say "religion made me do it." The other side of the coin is that we who are affected by the choices of others sometimes ourselves assign reasons for behavior by contributing decisions to religion. While our belief systems definitely play a role in shaping our characters, I don't believe they make us behave in certain ways.

    Answer by NannyB. at 9:02 AM on Oct. 3, 2012

  • I think people in general have a tendency to become obsessed with new things in their lives: people, hobbies, beliefs etc. And, then it starts to become routine so, they back off. I've have family members do that. We were raised very relaxed when it came to religion. My 82 yr old Grandparents never pushed it on any of us. To this day, I've only known them to go to church for: weddings, funerals & christenings.

    Anyway, one of my aunt's became "born again" after she got divorced. It was annoying. She wouldn't allow my cousin to listen to rock music & etc. Thankfully that only lasted about 6 months and now 20 yrs later, it's like it never happened. I think sometimes people run to and use religion as a crutch during difficult times, become obsessed with it for a while (better to think about that than their REAL problem) and, then get better, bored with it and, go back to being their normal selves.

    Answer by 3libras at 9:37 AM on Oct. 3, 2012

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