Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Growth in secularism

Well maybe. The New York Times highlights a Pew study “Nones” on the Rise.  According to the study:
"The number of Americans who do not identify with any religion continues to grow at a rapid pace. One-fifth of the U.S. public – and a third of adults under 30 – are religiously unaffiliated today, the highest percentages ever in Pew Research Center polling."
But one might argue that it not that Americans are becoming necessarily less religious but less attracted to organized religion.
"The number of Americans who do not identify with any religion continues to grow at a rapid pace. " [Pew Forum].
Do you need to go to a church on Sunday to be religious? The study also found that:
"Two-thirds of them [the non-affiliated] say they believe in God (68%). More than half say they often feel a deep connection with nature and the earth (58%), while more than a third classify themselves as “spiritual” but not “religious” (37%), and one-in-five (21%) say they pray every day."
There are some though that are not seeing the forest. They are mixing  religion and  faith with spirituality and humanity.  Most people do not need a religion or a faith to be spiritual, compassionate, humanitarian, and merciful.
A lot of the younger people are very spotty in their attendance at worship, but if we have a mission project, they’re here. They run the soup kitchens, they build the houses in Habitat for Humanity.” [Presbyterian minister quoted in NYTimes.]
But that pastor sees that work by younger people as an exhibition of their faith.

Here is the study's cincher:
"With few exceptions, though, the unaffiliated say they are not looking for a religion that would be right for them. Overwhelmingly, they think that religious organizations are too concerned with money and power, too focused on rules and too involved in politics."

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