chapter  48
12 Pages



Belief in a God or in gods usually has effects on the way we regard our life in community with others. For example, theistic accounts of the world help shape our self-conception, our hopes and expectations for life, and our ethical concepts. In turn, all of these have an effect on the way we think about communities and on the way we live in community with other people. Our self-conception helps us decide whether we belong in community with other people, and, if so, what sort of community we belong in. Our hopes and expectations for our own lives can make us contented with our situation as our fate, or drive us to seek support from others or freedom from oppression. Our ethical concepts nearly always concern our thinking about justice and the way we relate to those people who are in our community and to those outside it.