Under the umbrella term ‘sports’, are types of games, and then subcategories of teams. Because of ‘team loyalty’, people who like the same specific sport may still dislike each other.
Religion is the same way. Not everyone is religious, and not all religious people are the same type, or follow the same dutiful/spiritual practices. In fact, many religious people dislike each other because of team rivalry.
-It might be wonderful to find a specific group of people who do things exactly as you would, and many people crave that type of social comradery. But that actually limits the tolerance of what the group is prepared to accept, and influences others in the group to be similarly prejudiced. A united community behavior occasionally develops into a ‘mob mentality’ [aka religious euphoria]; which is the intensified confidence people experience when a lot of other people feel the same way.
In a world, where everyone is a fan of their own local sports team, we would all inherently think less of our distant neighbors for not seeing it our way. Occasions will arise when local teams are played against each other, and friends will find themselves in a rivalry.
To an outsider [sports atheist], a sports feud is utter nonsense. In theory, enthusiasts should all get along since they have the same interests, is that not enough? Well, no it’s not.
– For centuries, wars have been fought to determine which team was best. Conquering, converting, enslaving, destroying, constructing massive stadium-sanctuaries to highlighting the prestige of their champions. Religious fanatics are similar to sports fanatics in terms of their devotedness. People rally behind their specific teams; each person personally investing their time, energy, freedom, and finances, so that they might feel closer to their team. The more people who support a team, and the more resources they amass, the greater their illusion of superiority.
– A stadium functions in the same way a church does. It’s a building that summons and mesmerizes a horde of people every week, shouts things at them, and influences the way they dress. Both buildings ask for financial support, and both are reliant on their supporters to continue.
Even though ‘religion’ and ‘sports’ function similarly in society [both cult-like in nature], they are obviously different. Unworldly vs. worldly. Many people enjoy both, and many people dislike both. I suppose some people believe that the 2 are interchangeable. But there’s a time and place for each. People aren’t able to approach their sports teams and ask for advice about ethical grey-areas. Nor are they able to gamble on competitive athletic feats in a church assembly.