I knew a guy who quit religion and after being in the Army became a super-patriot. I took a while to understand the change I saw and then told him he'd found another religion.

Wanting to know more. I googled nationalism as religion and found the following URL:


It took me to the second of two blog posts by a Cris Campbell, who says he holds advanced degrees in anthropology, philosophy, and law. It links to his first post, and early in it he says

Disentangling religion from nationalism is a nearly impossible task.

His first post concludes with:

In more recent times (i.e., over the last 700 years or so) another factor has played a major (if not dominant) role in group cohesion.  That factor is nationalism, and it has much in common with religion.  In tomorrow’s post, I will detail the many ways in which nationalism is analogous to religion.

Elsewhere in that first post he'd said kinship was the first means of group cohesion and religion was the second.

In his second post is the following:

During the course of the Neolithic transition, groups also began to identify themselves with particular city-states — this was the beginning of nationalism, the third major factor that creates group identity. Today, nationalism surely plays the dominant role in group cohesion around the world. One of the best treatments of this complex subject comes from Benedict Anderson’s Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism.

Another approach to this subject comes from the sociologist Robert Bellah, who has written extensively on nationalism and what he calls “civil religion.” Carolyn Marvin and David Ingle elaborated Bellah’s notion of civil religion in their controversial and compelling article, “Blood Sacrifice and the Nation: Revisiting Civil Religion.” The article begins with a commonplace observation: “Americans live in a culture that is as religious as any that exists.” Few will argue this point, as the United States — along with countries such as Iran and Saudi Arabia — routinely rates highest in the world on measures of religiosity. Marvin and Ingle are not, however, referring to American Christianity. The religion of which they speak is American nationalism:    In this article we contend that nationalism is the most powerful religion in the United States, and perhaps in many other countries. Structurally speaking, nationalism mirrors sectarian belief systems such as Christianity, Judaism, Islam and others that are more conventionally labeled as religious. It happens that nationalism also satisfies many traditional definitions of religion, but citizens of nation-states have religious reasons for denying it.

We argue that both sectarian and national religions organize killing energy by committing devotees to sacrifice themselves to the group.  We also explore the ritual role of media in propagating national religion. Media are not the most important ritual vehicles for nationalism, but they matter. Though based in empirical observation, our claims are theoretical in nature. Their value lies in re-thinking certain empirical phenomena in relation to notions of nationalism and religion in the contemporary world. Although our examples come mostly from the United States and its majority sectarian faith, and although generalization is risky, the principles we describe are broadly applicable to other enduring groups, defined as groups for which members are willing to give their lives.

The US Supreme Court (the Catholic-Republican majority, that is) has ruled that the flag salute and non-secterian prayer in public meetings is not religion, but civil religion.

Religion and faith is now nationalism and patriotism?

What say you?

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All I seem to be doing with this computer is trying to navigate the words to the centre of the screen.It's definitely a Bletchley park original.

Anybody got any tips.

If you are in Nexus most likely you have center aligned it. There are 3 alignments there and you can click on them to align each side or the center as you write a message.

///If you grew up in a religion, did you lose it and nationalism together?///

Nationalism wasn't big in my household, which is ironic for a Pentecostal family household. I mean, my parents always voted a straight red ticket, but they never discussed with me why. I was always impressed upon to go vote.

When I pitched out my religious belief, my sense of civic duty never diminished. I'm a "political atheist" though. Shit, I'm atheist about a lot of things, but politics and superstition are big ones that I don't fall for.

civic duty stays of course, only egotists want to skip that.

I get maligned all the time for emphasizeing the importance of participating in elections. I just can't help but want to know what my government is doing.

Hi, Bluegrass, I hope your government tells you.

I have since 1952 participated in elections but my government, besides not telling me, during the war in Viet Nam asserted a right to lie to me.

I kid you not; the White House press secretary said as much. On TV.




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