Myth vs. Religion
There comes a point in time when one must begin to question his own beliefs about God and the afterlife, and to a larger extent, the beliefs of the society within which he lives. Where do our individual beliefs stop and our collective begin? How is it that we can be so diametrically opposed by religious preference on one level and so aligned by common humanness on another? How does society remain intact?
It would seem that, particularly in this day and age, a society based on a mythos (a philosophy that honors free-thinking and archetypal engagement) far outweighs one which honors dogma and restrictive thinking; such as that of religion. But, why such a distinction between the two? For weren't the Mithraic cults of Rome and the mystery schools of Osiris considered religions?
The distinction between the two paths of Myth and Religion can be found when one considers the level of empowerment afforded by their respective followers.
Ritual has been a part of human society for millennia. Our culture is based upon the intrinsic human necessity to repeat our actions. Repetition gives our actions validity. Subconsciously, we arise in the morning to a ritual of preparation for the day because we have proven to ourselves that it is an effective way to maintain a state of being which is complimentary to society's view of a well-adjusted individual. We must actualize this image of ourselves; engage in this preparatory assembly of imagined procedures to become the 'persona' by which the world knows us. Arranging our lives in this way is comforting and conclusively necessary for our well-being.
Let's take a look at worship. Again, this is a common human indulgence; an unconscious drive to bring validity to the world around us. We instinctually develop degrees of worship in all of our relationships, finding comfort in the attachment they bring. We worship our pets, our mate, our friends, our family, our political leaders, and our beliefs (large and small). We give homage in conversation to our dead-set beliefs of the way the world functions. These worshipful beliefs are our safety nets from complete dislocation from the "normal" reality we've created in our minds. We worship these things and others because they have control over our sense of well-being.