Reason is an important tool, sure — an essential arbiter of truth claims about the world. But religion is grounded someplace deeper, where we experience the joy of living and are connected intimately with all that is. Religion is an entirely human experience but one that we get in touch with using some pathway other than intellectual argument. In religion, we seek to address not just what is but also what we hope for and what we dedicate ourselves to. We rely on it to navigate the shoals of love and grief, compassion and estrangement, gratitude and disappointment, and mystery and wonder.
As [David] Bumbaugh suggests, religion deserves reverence; it requires a vocabulary and a theology. This theology demands no intervention of unearthly forces but invites us to open ourselves to different ways of living and learning. It considers “the human” a niche in the vast, intertwined plenitude of being. And just what is our niche? We are fragile, fallible sorts for whom just being is a blessing and love is a polestar.