Religions like these teach a few things I will talk about below. The funny (or not so funny) thing is that that these ideas persist in our society as memes even in places where people are not actually religiously connected to any of the modern religions I already mentioned (Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, etc). These memes run deep in our society and require an actual dialogue about them for anyone to ever notice them.
1. People are flawed. No natural living animal would think it is flawed. Our culture does. Why? It explains to our simple minds why there is so much tragedy and chaos in the world. It's easier than saying "we effed up by creating a system where you have possessions and have to work to make money to buy food, and this system hurts the majority but helps an upper class minority of 10-20%", etc.
From believing that people are flawed, we begin to believe that the world would be better if people were better. From this, everything in our modern society is based upon utopian ideals. Our governments, schools, police squads, etc would all work fantastic if everyone was perfect!
If people are flawed, then shoot...couldn't that leave someone even more depressed than they were when they first started learning this religion? This religion has it's answer here though. Our culture either believes that "gods will save us" (salvation), or "we are gods of our own world" (scientific ignorance). These are the only comforting notions when faced with the fact people are flawed.
Plus, the "people are flawed" idea works great for the believer to be confident that they KNOW the one right way to live. *I mean, if other people are flawed, maybe they would be trying to 'dirty' me by trying to convert me away from my religion. Maybe I am better off with my religion than those primitive peoples who don't believe. Maybe those primitive peoples just need enlightenment.* This takes me to the next point...
2. There is one right way to live. We know the right way to live. If it wasn't for this belief, our totalitarian agricultural society would have never spread. People HAD to think that their way was better than the tribes and other modern people they would kill in pursuit of their 'holy' goals. They HAD to think that hard work was good, divine, natural, and praise-worthy. They HAD to think people were meant to suffer.
3. More of anything will solve the problem of not enough. You won't find this last belief in the religious texts because no one likes a selfish person or god. However, it pervades all parts of our society. I'm including it just so that my list of totalitarian agriculture memes is complete. So, why or how did this belief come to be? Totalitarian agriculture always destroyed the soil after enough use, so peoples had to expand to more land. In the earlier times, this expansion was easy. There were gobs of land to be easily taken from unwary tribes. We as a society have an unfailing, ignorant belief that there will always be something over the horizon that will make us ok. It used to be 'more fertile land', and in the 21st century it is beginning to be "the next technological advancement" that will cleanse our destruction of the Earth. For some it's actually both.... "more fertile land in the form of a whole new planet we can colonize due to the next technological advancement."
Also, this whole "totalitarian agriculture" way of life destroys certain basic elements of human happiness that people start to get shallower so as to feel some happiness. We think money is the solution to our problems. We buy food, respect, and security. We used to just find/hunt food for free and give/receive support among all the tribe's members