On religion, mindfulness and the Cosmos
Humans identify with certain religious beliefs out of a deep need for purpose and connection. I've had contact with Buddhists for a couple years and I could see that most of them got relief form delivering themselves to a group of people sharing the same set of beliefs and practices. And also by giving their hearts a honorable path to walk upon throughout their lives brought them purpose, guidance, safety and peace.
Buddhism is still a religion or set of beliefs yes but out of all those that our species as come up with, it's one that I can respect.
I believe that it would be beneficial to understand that ending with religion, criticising it, pointing it's flaws and so on won't solve the problem. Because those deep needs are still there no matter how much we fight religion.
Instead we could shift our focus and try to better understand those deep needs that drive human beings in identifying themselves with religion, cults or even political groups... This way we could present better alternatives to religion.
I for one feel in myself a very deep need in believing, pay respect and gratitude to some kind of higher power: the Cosmos itself feels to me like a very good alternative. I don't really know what the Cosmos is. No one really does. It's a mystery. But you can see it, taste it, feel it. It's all around us and within us.
Mindfullness is actually a very good tool in that it provides us a way to connect to this mystery and achieve some balance within ourselves.