All of these groups represent the basic human desire to be part of some belief system. They all want to belong to something. Reynolds wants to be accepted for his beliefs by the important people in the anthropological academic community. Isaacs wants the same thing as Reynolds, but for different reasons. He needs to be respected so he can replace his "poor white trash" upbringing in Tennessee. Bowlegs never felt a part of the Navajo beliefs because his dysfunctional family never taught him about it, so he's seeking to find his beliefs with the Zuni people. The Golden Fleece commune members have created their own "miniculture" on Navajo land since they didn't want to be a part of, or didn't feel they were accepted by, the mainstream culture of white America. The importance of the religious beliefs of the Zunis is emphasized throughout the novel.