Can One Be Non-Religious but Still Believe in God?

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Can one be non-religious but still believe in God?
“My grandfather believed that the greatest religion of all was to ensure that we wipe the tears from every eye and bring hope and decency to every life. If performed with utmost humility, he said, this service would grant us the magnanimity to recognize and accept the many ways we are called to see God in humanity.” –Sankara Saranam (Saranam, 2005) One can still believe in God without associating with religion. This is possible when people believe in searching for God through themselves, by choosing to distance themselves from religion because they do not want to be bound by religious ideals, and by staying away from religion due to one’s belief that the name of religion is misused in today’s time with the name of God. People often believe in God by searching for the divine power through their inner selves. God exists within every human heart in the form of the love, compassion, understanding, and other positive traits that the human kind is capable of, yet they choose to suppress (Saranam, 2005). Often, one does not realize that regardless of what religion one follows, God is inside each human heart through all the positive qualities and emotions that one possesses. All the emotions that one feels are God given, therefore the search to connect with him can be done through one’s reflection of their life and the choices they have made. God is everywhere, so in order to connect with Him; one can choose to worship his power and existence without involving any religious aspect to their relationship. One may choose to distance themselves from religion because they believe that indulging in it will restrict them from living their life on their own terms. Some people may choose to believe that what religious holy books teach, may tie them down to follow it faithfully. Moreover, if one decides to marry someone out of their religion, they may be accused of not being loyal enough to it. For example, Islam teaches that...
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