For underlying all philosophies and all religions are the facts of the human soul, which may ultimately be the arbiters of truth and error.
Because there are innumerable things beyond the range of human understanding, we constantly use symbolic terms to represent concepts that we cannot define or fully comprehend. This is one reason why all religions employ symbolic language or images. But this conscious use of symbols is only one aspect of a psychological fact of great importance: Man also produces symbols unconsciously and spontaneously, in the form of dreams.
dreams / psychological / religions / symbolic / understanding
It is easy to show that the ego ideal answers to everything that is expected of the higher nature of man. As a substitute for a longing for the father, it contains the germ from which all religions have evolved.
Since long ago all peoples have recognized that the world, apart from its physical meaning, also has a moral one. Yet everywhere the matter has only come to a vague consciousness, which, as it sought expression, clothed itself in all sorts of images and myths. There are religions.
Beauvoir herself was as devout an atheist as she had once been a Catholic, and she dismisses religions — even when they worship a goddess — as the inventions of men to perpetuate their dominion.
Believe me, religions are on the wrong track the moment they moralize and fulminate commandments. God is not needed to create guilt or to punish. Our fellow men suffice, aided by ourselves.