It is my sense that Christians believe that good Christians make good people. On the contrary, I’ve found good people make good Christians. In fact, good people also make good Muslims, good Buddhists, and perhaps even good Taoists. Then again, we have the irony chapter 2 refers to, All realizing goodness as goodness, no goodness already… but I digress.
Hitchhiking in Malaya and Indonesia, and then in the Middle East and North Africa made this glaringly obvious. All these regions are Muslim, yet the cultural quirks are strikingly different, especially the Eastern two versus the Western two. If religion makes the people, then the people of each region, in this case Muslim, should have been much more alike.
Since those initial observations, I have seen numerous examples of this disconnect between the people and their religion or politics. People bring their innate personality and emotional stability to their religion and politics. Our fears often manifest themselves in malicious behavior and influence how we express our particular religious and political leaning.
Obviously, this is no great secret. Indeed, it is all too easy to notice, so why is this not part of common knowledge? As chapter 70 hints,
Social instincts compel us to judge people by their faction. Thus, if we believe our faction is good, it must produce good adherents. Instinct also induces us to adopt the religious and political beliefs that validate our membership in our faction or distinguish our faction from another faction. In this regard, beliefs serve much the same unifying tribal purpose as the styles of clothing, music, and food we choose to wear, listen to, and eat. (See Belief: Are We Just Fooling Ourselves?, p.591.)