Most people have one major appliance, or at least will purchase onem at some point in their lives. The purchase itself is an interesting event. The deliberations leading up to it can often take months or even years. Many factors have to be considered: price range, durability, functional options, fit with available space, mode of delivery, etc.

To get a handle on all these parameters, buyers typically shop around. And, if a previous brand what a let-down, switching to a competitor is almost assured. Name recognition carries some weight but, on the whole, consumer patterns are not beholden to much loyalty. The purchase of a durable household good is thus a solid case study in rational decision.

Now, how are religions chosen? They are not. Instead, the accidents of geography pretty much fix this from birth. Such a generalization of course admits of exceptions—because humans have free will. Still, knowing the womb that a given human comes out of is arguably the most reliable predictor of life-long religious affiliation.

Call me crazy, but I think that the choice of fundamental beliefs deserves more attention/deliberation than the choice of household appliances.


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