It's almost as if they don't realize or accept the most basic of truths; that we are animals, born naked, due to the instinct-driven activities of naked animals. Religion, on these issues, is a psychological problem, with a strong denial of reality aspect.
Imagine you're in a semi-sapient proto-human in a savannah, and see a bush wiggle. The possible interpretations, in descending order of importance, are:
- 1. There's a predator in the bushes, waiting to eat you.
- 2. There's prey in the bushes, waiting to be eaten.
- 3. It was just the wind.
Basically, people are programmed to see purposes behind every event because it leads to higher evolutionary success. And this got even more so when we kept getting smarter and make our societies more complex; in today's world it's more important than ever. And that means religion is not going anywhere: people are going to keep seeking purpose behind seemingly random events because that tendency pays of in cases where there actually is some agent involved. If anything, we're getting more religious over time.
If true, that would put Dawkin's crusade into a rather ironic light, since his own discipline is saying he can't succeed. And it also means that religion is actually an attempt to manage the underlaying psychological problem - rather than just let everyone do pattern-matching and modeling their behaviour on presumably random data, create a dogma that unifies expected behaviour and allows somewhat rational analysis. And then you run into problems again when said dogma picks up cultural memes and preserves them way past their useful life, assuming they ever had any, as both Christianity and Islam have. Still, the alternative is leaving people vulnerable to the likes of Hubbard and Jim Jones.
Heck, the current US government shutdown is a fine example of a religious fight, a battle between two groups of people who believe in incompatible versions of reality, and - typically of such fights - are also convinced that theirs is the only possible and the other side is just lying for the sake of being evil. It's also a good example of what happens in a society when a unifying dogma breaks down and leaves members with too little common ground to really function together.