True believers as defined by Eric Hoffer have personality types that need something or someone to latch onto. About 35% or more of the population craves someone else make decisions and rules for them to live by. We spot religion 35 points before tipoff! Here below is a telling statement about religion, and this quote is not even about religion, but personality types.
“True believers are not intent on bolstering and advancing a cherished self, but are those craving to be rid of an unwanted self. They are followers, not because of a desire for self-advancement, but because it can satisfy their passion for self-true believers “are eternally incomplete and eternally insecure.”(1) Well if that doesn’t just about nail it.
He continues with this-
Before ending this section, I want to talk about the people who are most susceptible to conversion and joining mass movements. I am convinced that at least a third of the population are what Eric Hoffer calls true believers. They are joiners and followers … people who want to give away their power. They look for answers, meaning and enlightenment outside themselves.
This personality type will always be with us. They look for some sort of spiritual leader, whether it’s religion, multilevel marketing groups, or the Jidda. Some place they can shed their burdens or gain acceptance in a group. Even a mythical one.
“In my years of conducting seminar trainings, I have constantly run into true believers. All I can do is advise them to seek the True Self within, where meaningful personal answers will be found. I teach that the basics of spirituality are self-responsibility and the attainment of self-actualization (being compassionate, while also accepting others without judgment, expectations, blame or attempting to control.) But most of the true believers just tell me that I’m not spiritual and go looking for someone who will give them the dogma and structure they desire”.
So maybe Atheism should be a belief system. Do we need a mantra and some chants and promised salvation to tap into this untapped resource? Nah.
Believers sq + need x acceptance is congruent to Religion. I love math!