The Philatelic Temple

A successful religion, besides having appealing theological answers, needs to have a broad psychological umbrella in order to achieve popularity. People come in all psychic shapes and sizes and a successful religion needs to have an attraction to each. To name just three types (and of course most people are a mixture of types), there are good and kind people, scholarly and erudite people, and angry and hostile people. In religion, the first group finds love in their religion, the second studies its transcendental mysteries and the third tends to form the fire and brimstone crowd lurking at the edges. And these are just three of the many types of personalities that a religion needs to find room for if it is going to have more than a fringe or cult interest. Similarly, hobbies, if they are successful, need to provide different psychological spaces for their adherents.

 In philately, again to use just the three examples above, the good and the kind tend to gravitate to modern mint stamps, often collecting thematically. The scholarly usually find their way to postal history, plating, and research topics relating to stamps. And the angry and hostile are forever infuriated about quality and repairs and counterfeits (which really aren’t much of a problem anymore) and the fact that the hobby has changed from some idyllic image that they had of it in their childhood. As in life, we each find in our hobby what we want to or are driven to. If you enjoy stamp collecting it is probably because you enjoy life and are content with what it has to offer. But if you are constantly angry that the philatelic world is not conforming to your view of it, stamp collecting is probably not what you are really angry at.

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