The Importance of Religion

Categories : Gembing


Religious faith is an important part of human existence. It serves many purposes: it rationalizes individual loss and suffering in the known world; it makes a person’s life purposeful; it provides an underlying basis for moral beliefs; and it ties together a society’s cultural values in a cohesive whole.

Religion gives a spiritual basis for social laws, which are often the foundation of law in modern-day societies. It also encourages people to treat others fairly and protect their communities. Most religions emphasize doing good deeds for the benefit of other people, which may contribute to a more caring and giving world.

A famous definition of religion comes from the anthropologist Clifford Geertz: Religion is a system of symbols that establishes powerful, pervasive moods and motivations in man by formulating conceptions of a general order of existence and clothing these with such an aura of factuality as to make them seem uniquely realistic.

Research shows that regular attendance at religious services is linked to stronger families, healthier children, fewer domestic abuse incidents and less drug addiction. It is also associated with improved mental health, a greater sense of belongingness to community and tradition, and even longer lifespans. This is why it is important for the President to appoint and the Senate to confirm judges who are sensitive to religion’s role in American life, rather than crowding it out of every activity that government oversees. That would weaken our nation. But for the moment, most people who report that religion is very important in their lives have not changed their minds.