I think what religion and politics have in common is that they become part of people's identity, and people can never have a fruitful argument about something that's part of their identity. [¶¶]
... The more labels you have for yourself, the dumber they make you. ...
It's amazing to me how often suffering comes from saying "I am X", therefore "I am negated if X is negated". The converse is also true: it's amazing how much more freely one can live when one doesn't do that.
Graham offers an example of a (theoretical) minimalist professional identity:
A scientist isn't committed to believing in natural selection in the same way a bibilical [sic] literalist is committed to rejecting it. All he's committed to is following the evidence wherever it leads.
Where religion is concerned, we could do worse than to adopt, as our minimalist identity, the Summary of the Law that Jesus stressed. Regular readers know I usually paraphrase the Summary; my latest version is, "face the facts, try to take delight in them, and seek the best for others as you do for yourself."