While trying to find ways to frame my understanding of different religions, and different individuals’ religion, is a worthwhile activity in itself, I would be lying if I claimed that my primary motivation was anthropological or psychological. Rather, I’ve primarily been imagining that this project would be useful for writing fiction: in a realist context, for creating a plausible variety of plausible religious characters (including those who believe themselves irreligious*); in a fantastic context, for creating a plausible variety of plausible religious characters and for creating a plausible variety of plausible fictional religions. If you write or worldbuild for any other reason, I suspect it might also be useful to you; the place where I can imagine this happening the most for the most people would be when playing D&D or some other tabletop RPG.
This post is here for you if you plan on using this series to make a D&D character.**
I’ve included a short version down at the bottom, if you want to see an example/avoid making your own. I’m sure it says as much about me as it would about any character I made.
As I said, make yourself a shorter version by selecting the questions you care about. Here would be the sort of shorter version I might use:
For each question, note whether and, if so, how the character differs from her religious community, religious sect, and religion in general on this matter.
1. What is the character’s obsessio? What is the character’s epiphania?
6. Does this character primarily fear death or the Absurd, and do they deny or face this fear?
*Which is not to say that all irreligious people are unknowingly religious by all or even most useful definitions of religion, but simply that some irreligious people are unknowingly religious by some or most useful definitions of religion. Again, there's a whole other series of posts in what counts as a religion.
**To forestall the complaints I’m sure I’d get if over a dozen people read this post: I do not imagine D&D to be the ultimate, a typical, or even a decent example of mythopoeia (the creation, or in technical terms the sub-creation, of a mythology or myth). While I suspect that real mythopoeia is possible in tabletop role-playing, I doubt the medium encourages anything like the Legendarium. It doesn’t need to. But, as far as mythopoeia goes, D&D is the closest most people are likely to get very often, besides of course the creation of their own worldview. This topic might be worth its own discussion.