I have a purple polo shirt. Several, actually. I like polo shirts, and I like purple. But one of these shirts has, over time, acquired a special distinction.
You see, sometime in the last few years, I realized something about that particular shirt. Just because it made me feel good, I had worn it to my most recent doctor appointments. And each time I came away with good reports. No issues, all’s well, carry on, etc. So I began to make it a practice to wear that particular shirt to doctor appointments. No big deal. Just a lucky charm of sorts.
Now, does doing that mean I’m superstitious? I don’t think so. It’s just a silly little thing I do. I have to wear a shirt anyway, so why not that shirt? Do I think it will actually make a difference? That wearing it will guarantee a positive outcome? Nah. Of course not. It’s just a shirt. But it seems like it’s been kind of lucky in the past, so why not?
Then today, out of nowhere, an idea began to form. Religion is kind of like that shirt. People put it on because they want to boost their chance of having a good outcome. They like wearing it. Wearing it makes them feel good. Some of them don’t really believe it will make a difference, but why take a chance? Can’t hurt, might help. Is wearing that shirt belief or superstition? Is religion belief or superstition? (Me, I’m a nonbeliever.)
Who’s to say? Lots of people wear purple shirts. For lots of different reasons. Do the shirts make any difference? Maybe. Maybe not.
A shirt is just a shirt. No more, no less. Make of that what you will.
Purple shirts. Go figure.