Rainn Wilson Soulpancake

In this digital, turbocharged era we don’t always take the time to consider the bigger picture and the bigger questions. Rainn Wilson shares his thoughts on some of the most important faith questions of our day in his new book, SOULPANCAKE, and he wants to know what Beliefnet readers have to say, too. The Question is: Do we need religion? Post your thoughts in the comment section below. Return to Rainn Wilson main page.

I personally don't care for organized religion to worship the God I love, but others like the structure of a religion and a sense of belonging. Also religions are so varied and distinct, we all worship in our own way and everyone should believe in something.
- Julianne P Walsh

We don't need "religion." Christianity is about a relationship with Christ.
- Kathy Boone

Don't need religion. Need JESUS!! Without him we have no hope.
- Joyce Wheatley Shockley

We don't need religion. We just need to have faith and except god as our Lord and Savior.
- Randino Mathews

Kathy said what I was going to say^^^
- Cecile Midence Hall

We only need to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ & know that He died for us. It is necessary to have a relationship with Jesus Christ. It is not about religion. It is only about a relationship. I consider religion a broad term used to describe what people put first in their lives, what they live for. What is their top priority or what is most important to them. If it is money, vanity, sports, status or whatever it may be that is number one in your life and what drives you then that is your religion. For me it is Jesus. This life on earth is temporal so I am more concerned with eternity and where I will spend that time.

- Sonya M Neff

I'd been searching for the truth since my early teens. I've studied with Jehovah Witnesses, Islam, been a Baptist, Mormon, Seventh Day Adventist only to come to realize that I don't need "Religion." Like Sonya Neff previously stated, "What we need is to Believe that Jesus Christ is OUR Saviour and that He died for OUR sins. We NEED to have a personal relationship with Him. Not the Church, the Pastor, the Priest, Sister Mary Margaret, the Pope or any other person or thing that will make us distracted or disconnected from Him.
- Poetess Kharlah

There are certain things we ought to do religiously and with discipline in life, which can in turn become good habits, that in turn make our lives better, for eg. good personal habits, which make our own body and mind healthy, and good ethics that make the world better. Anything good that we do religiously becomes our religion.
- Minnie Mehrotra

Everyone needs to believe, and everyone has his own religion, but there is only one for me. The one and only the LORD JESUS CHRIST. Just like Sonya M Neff wrote. Thank you for the message.
- Wayne Phillips

I think it is a pity that religion has so many negative connotations, however understandable (IMO) . . . Whatever form faith takes in someone's heart, I think religion is much like a language and also like a ship.

Religion is like language, in that it gives us an alphabet and grammar and vocabulary with which to articulate our relationship with The Great Unknowable. . . it's not that religion can address & answer every question; it's that without religion we cannot begin to form the questions. Religion asks us to stretch our minds and imagination; it collects all the great theological thoughts and wonderings into a great "volume" of experience with which we finite beings can try to grasp, and know, and develop a relationship with the Infinite Source of all Love and Light.

Religion is like a ship, in that it enables us to have a structure to hold onto in the midst of every storm. It's not that without language we cannot communicate -- or that without a ship we cannot sail through a storm. But without the language of religion, it's vastly harder. Without the ship of religion, we could try to tread water on our own, but it's so very much harder to do. Religion is merely humankind's clumsy attempt to reach out to God and develop a relationship with Him. It envelopes all of our sense and it engages our minds more completely.

As a practicing devout Catholic -- I deeply love the traditions and rituals of my Church and my faith, as it enriches my every opportunity and experience and reminds me of God's omnipresence in this world. So much ill will is directed against so many religions around the world -- oftentimes, understandably. But that ill will only reflects our own human limitations -- and should be a reminder to us that we not confuse God and Faith, with the very fallible human beings who struggle to organize and understand that faith through a system of beliefs we call religion.
- Mary Margaret Cannon

Because it's the one thing we can count on. Jesus is the only way for me. God gives me peace and calm.
- Sherry Meyers Wilson

Don't know that we do. We need to seat God in our hearts and to grow a personal relationship with him. Surrender. Obey. Love.
- James E. Knauff III

I don't think we "need" religion, I mean it's possible to be spiritual without being religious and it's also possible to be religious without being so dogmatic and rigid, although religious organizations and how they are run aren't necessarily a bad thing. Different strokes for different folks, I guess.
- Marianne Silverstein

Religion, has a broad meaning to most of us. God and Jesus Christ are the most important for us to believe in. We all need something to believe in to lead us.
- Leyhon Phillips

I don't need religion. I need to bond with people who find meaning in life outside of themselves. The entire world is my church. I network with all faiths.
- Fred Summerfelt

I don't need religion I have found, but I like religion, to an extent. I like the history of it all, the excitement I see in some people's eyes when they speak of their faith, and the different ways in which people choose to express that faith. Religion provides us with beautiful stories and terrifying mythology--there is something for everyone. I do not like preachy narrow-minded people who feel that their way is the only way, and insist on shoving it down everyone else's throat.
- Jen Warwick

It's wonderful to have religion, but in my opinion....we need to have God....Christ in our lives. There are too many negative things going on in the world today. The word of God says, choose ye this day who you will serve. If you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything! We all have a choice and we all have a right to have an opinion...but none of us have the right to judge. Respect each other's religion...because mine is Christianity!
- Vicky Josey

I believe everyone needs a sense of belonging to something and something in which to believe. Religion formalizes both. I don't believe everyone needs to be part of a formal religion to find spiritual meaning or a sense of belonging. From a societal perspective, religions usually provide structure and rules to help people get along with each other such as the 10 commandments. Many also provide outlets to serve society through volunteer and mission work.
- Rj Sutton

we need someone to believe in and someone to worship and know there's a higher power than us.
- Tressa Mizer

We don't need religion. We need love.
- Lonny Brown

God is great. Religion is great. However, most of the religious leaders are evil. If the world could come together and pray to God and stop allowing men to divide us, we would have a better world and god would be pleased with us.
- Sunita Persaud

My two favorite definitions of religion.

Paul Tillich: "Religion is the state of being grasped by an ultimate concern, a concern which qualifies all other concerns as preliminary and which itself contains the answer to the question of a meaning of our life."

Christopher Morley: "Religion is an attempt, a noble attempt, to suggest in human terms more-than-human realities."

Humans are hard-wired to ponder these ultimate concerns and to try to discover these more-than-human realities. It is necessary in order for other concerns in the human reality to fall into place, to be regarded and to function as they should. Not every individual feels this need, of course. However, I've never heard of a society, past or present, that didn't have either religion or a substitute for religion. Totalitarian Communist nations such as the USSR officially had no religion. Yet they expected their citizens---at least those who wanted to rise within the system---to devote themselves to the ruling ideology wholeheartedly, to make it the center of their lives. In short, they turned godless communism into a religion. Sound like an oxymoron? Didn't matter.

Human societies, and most people in them, have a need that only religion can fulfill. If it's not there, some sort of ideology, some cause, some reason for living will rush in and fill the vacuum. And become that person's or that society's religion.

So the crucial issue becomes not "Do we need religion?" The answer is clearly "Yes." The crucial issue is "Which one?"
- Mary Anne Landers

I have experienced several faith communities who claimed they were not religious. Everyone else knew otherwise. Today I have no problem with the word.

Religion is the structure of how we relate to the spiritual. If one relates to the spiritual by looking at sunsets then that is their religion.
- Bob Wells

we don't NEED religion, what we do NEED is spiritual awakening and consciousness. the universe has existed for billions of years without humans, and will continue after humans crumble to dust.
- Peter Barnes

Yes I do need a religion! I'm sorry to all but, I'm Buddhism and that's what I follow and believe I use to go to church Mormon, Baptist etc...just to find what and where can I fit in and find myself but, when my parents told me I can believe in which ever gods I choose to believe in ...I will not be wring for it so,..I said there's one god just for different ethnics lol
- Veronika Neou

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