This is Katja Grace’s blog. It is about the idiosyncratic class of things Katja considers to be on the frontier of important and interesting. Empirically, it tends to be about human behavior, social institutions and rules, anthropic reasoning, personal experimentation and improvement, philanthropy, and the prospect of machines becoming as interesting as humans. Katja is responsible for omissions as well as actions, and aspires to save the world at some point.
If you like this blog, but wish it was about mundane perspectives and ‘travel’ instead of matters of lasting importance, try Worldly Positions. If you want both of those things and more, with fewer errors from automatic crossposting, see world spirit sock puppet. (Everything here is now crossposted from there.)
Social cohesion is a result of citizens sharing a desire to believe something they all have a tiny private inkling might seem less true if they thought about it too much. They subconsciously know belief is easier when ubiquitously reinforced in social surroundings, and also that their beliefs are more enjoyable than the alternative. Thus they have a strong interest in religious behaviour in others and in their own feeling of unshakable commitment to those who practice it. So they encourage it with enthusiastic participation and try to ensconce themselves as much as necessary to feel safe from reality. If we found conclusive evidence of a god, everyone would be safe, and could get back to non-cohesion; it’s the possibility that the sky is chockers with nothingness that gives everyone the incentive for solidarity.
To test hypothesis, compare cohesion across other groups with beliefs (religious or otherwise) of varying tenuousness and of varying importance to their believers.