One of the main critiques I hear/read on evolution or secularism is that it reduces man to only focusing on him/herself. Religion, on the other hand, helps man focus on something higher than himself.
I’m wondering how true that is, though. Because in some ways, Christianity seems very ego-driven. After all, think of what many people would lose if it turns out Christianity was just a myth.
The concept is that this infinite, all-powerful Being created man to completely glorify Him. However, humanity sinned, and so could no longer be in paradise. But God still guided all of human affairs and history. God also hated sin with an incredibly intensity, and so either showered blessings or wrath on humans. It places God as very much focused on humans, and what humans do, and that humans get God angry enough that He punishes them for sinning. It makes man be God’s crowning achievement (because of free will and the fact that unlike animals, humans have a soul), and then says that this infinite, perfect, just, loving Being cares about us. In a way, it somewhat makes humans the center of God’s universe – which would be reflected in early Christianity, on the belief that the Earth was the center of the universe. It states that this infinite Being actually cares if people believe in Him or not, or cares of people love Him back.
With no God, humans lose the fact that humanity should glorify God. Humans lose the sense that they are so loved by this Being so much higher than themselves, and they lose the sense that the Being made the ultimate sacrifice for them. They lose the sense that this infinite Being cares about them. They lose the sense that an infinite Being has invited them to take part in His purpose, or has invited them to play a special role in creation. Just look at the Sinner’s Prayer:
"Father, I know that I have broken your laws and my sins have separated me from you. I am truly sorry, and now I want to turn away from my past sinful life toward you. Please forgive me, and help me avoid sinning again. I believe that your son, Jesus Christ, died for my sins, was resurrected from the dead, is alive, and hears my prayer. I invite Jesus to become the Lord of my life, to rule and reign in my heart from this day forward. Please send your Holy Spirit to help me obey you, and to do your will for the rest of my life. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen."
Look at how incredibly people-focused that prayer is. ‘I have broken the laws, I am sorry, I want to turn away, Jesus died for my sins, hears my prayer, I invite Jesus …’ The entire focus here is on the person, not God. It’s on how the person made God respond, and the fact that God is influenced by His emotions towards humanity.
Really, in a certain light, can’t religion be the most ego-driven of all? It makes humans feel important, in a way. It makes humans feel that there is a special purpose behind why they were created.