These lines, in particular, struck me:
The sociology and psychology of religion have been chewed upon over and over again particularly by critics. These lines remind me that there is also a sociology of non-religion. The non-religious, non-spiritual also have the need to belong, the need to form a collective identity.
And now parents were coming out of the woodwork asking for family-oriented programs where they could meet like-minded nonbelievers.
“Is everyone in favor of sponsoring a picnic for humanists with families?” asked the board president, Jonathan Lamb, a 27-year-old meteorologist, eliciting a chorus of “ayes.”
As a deeply spiritual, deeply religious person, I hadn't considered the need to belong separate from my faith and practice. For this reason, these groups are fascinating to me. Their gathering practices mimic those of religious organizations.
I'm certainly not excited by this movement in religiosity, but I am intrigued by it.