I'm no lover of fences, of the limitations, boundaries and delineations they represent. Yes, sometimes they're necessary. In some ways, such boundaries actually afford us the confidence and safety to stretch ourselves, to go farther than we would have without any sense of place, of where the unknown begins.
On some level, I believed atheism was hereditary. That the composition of my DNA couldn't produce anything other than me. And so, when my first daughter was born, I made a conscious effort to introduce her to religion. I wanted to make sure that whatever beliefs she formed, they were of her own making, not mine.
When you see people circling the Ka'aba it may look like a swarm, a school of fish, a galaxy swirling its way counterclockwise ... just because. From overhead it's a maelstrom that never sinks into the sea. It's a powerful, living organism, a community of Babel, in which individuals experience communion with "the other."