Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Poll Shows Fivefold Increase in Ranks of U.S. Atheists (downward trend in no. of religious people)
Slate ^ | 08/15/2012 | Jeffry Bloomer

Posted on 08/15/2012 7:51:47 AM PDT by SeekAndFind

A new poll suggests that 1 in 20 Americans now call themselves atheists, a fivefold increase from the last time the survey was taken in 2005.

The Religion News Service reports that, to go along with the jump, just 60 percent of Americans now identify as religious, down from 73 percent the last time the Global Index of Religiosity and Atheism poll was taken seven years ago. The decline has also been felt in many other countries around the world, including double-digit drops in several European and North American countries.

Here's the question pollsters asked 50,000 or so people from 57 countries and five continents: "Irrespective of whether you attend a place of worship or not, would you say you are a religious person, not a religious person, or a convinced atheist?"

Overall, the WIN-Gallup International-conducted poll found about 13 percent of respondents worldwide consider themselves atheists, and also showed notable disparities in atheism among faiths.

The stark findings set off some expected resistance, including a theory that the poll shows less a rise in atheists than in people who are willing to identify as one, especially with the rise of popular, outspoken skeptics like Richard Dawkins.* Others questioned the poll's international standards.

(Excerpt) Read more at slatest.slate.com ...


TOPICS: Current Events; Religion & Culture; Skeptics/Seekers
KEYWORDS: 2012polls; atheism; atheists; faith; god; secularization; trends
The stark findings set off some expected resistance, including a theory that the poll shows less a rise in atheists than in people who are willing to identify as one, especially with the rise of popular, outspoken skeptics like Richard Dawkins.* Others questioned the poll's international standards. (The complete poll and methodology are here.)
1 posted on 08/15/2012 7:51:58 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

...
On the first Feminian Sandstones we were promised the Fuller Life
(Which started by loving our neighbour and ended by loving his wife)
Till our women had no more children and the men lost reason and faith,
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: “The Wages of Sin is Death.”
...


2 posted on 08/15/2012 7:54:12 AM PDT by DuncanWaring (The Lord uses the good ones; the bad ones use the Lord.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DuncanWaring

Kipling nailed it.


3 posted on 08/15/2012 7:58:15 AM PDT by skeeter
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: skeeter

Kipling nailed the next century ... from the vantage point of 1919.


4 posted on 08/15/2012 8:01:24 AM PDT by DuncanWaring (The Lord uses the good ones; the bad ones use the Lord.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

Meanwhile, as Christian faith declines in Europe, with enlightened individuals rejecting doctrines of gods and other such “trivialities”, the sect of Mohammadism descends upon the face of Western Civilization. You cannot have a vacuum of belief; it will be filled, either with Truth or with Death.


5 posted on 08/15/2012 8:04:26 AM PDT by Arkansas Toothpick
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: DuncanWaring
Its no wonder the Illuminati ostracized him.
6 posted on 08/15/2012 8:07:54 AM PDT by skeeter
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

Does this mean Atheists are evil? I don’t see them as a threat. The believers, like the Wahhabi religious fanatics of Saudi Arabia and Iran are far more of a threat. Atheists aren’t Jihadists or Crusaders.


7 posted on 08/15/2012 8:10:17 AM PDT by Bringbackthedraft (I)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind
"Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake.
And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold." - Matthew 24 9-12
8 posted on 08/15/2012 8:11:22 AM PDT by Dr. Thorne (Don't vote for anyone who takes contributions from Goldman Sachs)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: DuncanWaring

Because preachers have never committed adultery


9 posted on 08/15/2012 8:25:23 AM PDT by Oztrich Boy (Internet fun fact: There is 1 person named walter wawra in Kalamazoo, MI.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

Then there are those who identify themselves as Christian (CINO)...and have no daily prayer/Scripture reading and who do not follow the Christian path of holiness.

But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do (1 Peter 1:15)

“Men have forgotten God; that’s why all this has happened.” ... Alexander Solzhenitsyn

“It’s the first effect of not believing in God that you lose your common sense.” ...GK Chesterton


10 posted on 08/15/2012 8:26:34 AM PDT by SumProVita (Cogito, ergo...Sum Pro Vita. - Modified Descartes)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

No surprise here. The Scriptures clearly tell of these in the end times. More is coming. Read your Bible. It is all there.


11 posted on 08/15/2012 8:27:46 AM PDT by RetiredArmy (If you cannot read the sign of the times, I suggest you read the Scriptures. They are CLEAR!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

They’ll be saying their prayers when they or their loved ones are dying.


12 posted on 08/15/2012 8:29:28 AM PDT by kenmcg (t)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind
Meanwhile, in Korea...


13 posted on 08/15/2012 8:37:03 AM PDT by Antoninus (Sorry, gone rogue.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

Not surprised. The scriptures indicate that evil is going to increase in the latter days.


14 posted on 08/15/2012 8:39:25 AM PDT by MEGoody (Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Antoninus

Are they going to sing John Lennon’s “Imagine” in Korean ? :)


15 posted on 08/15/2012 8:39:41 AM PDT by SeekAndFind (bOTRT)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: MEGoody

RE: The scriptures indicate that evil is going to increase in the latter days.

Not defending the beliefs of the atheists, but I have a few atheist friends who will object to equating their belief with “evil”. Just sayin’.


16 posted on 08/15/2012 8:41:08 AM PDT by SeekAndFind (bOTRT)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: Bringbackthedraft
Does this mean Atheists are evil?

Yes.

I don’t see them as a threat.

I don't see them as a personal threat either. Doesn't mean they aren't evil.

"Indeed, there is no one on earth who is righteous, no one who does what is right and never sins." (Ecc. 7:20)

17 posted on 08/15/2012 8:42:48 AM PDT by MEGoody (Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: Bringbackthedraft
Does this mean Atheists are evil? I don’t see them as a threat.

Really? Look up the names 'Josef Stalin' and 'Mao Tse-Tung' and get back to us on that.

Some (not all) atheists are really as fanatical 'believers' as any religious zealot. The aforementioned names and many of their clones and epigones over the last century attest to their bloodlust in imposing their vision 'heaven on earth'.

Oh, and by the way, our pResident Zerobama is, IMHO, a fanatical atheist as well. If he gets another term, I'm afraid that he'll take us down the same road that Stalin took Russia and Mao took China. Be very afraid.

18 posted on 08/15/2012 8:50:15 AM PDT by bassmaner (Hey commies: I am a white male, and I am guilty of NOTHING! Sell your 'white guilt' elsewhere.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind
Not defending the beliefs of the atheists, but I have a few atheist friends who will object to equating their belief with “evil”.

Yeah, they probably would. There are some atheists who call Christian belief evil. :::Shrug:::

19 posted on 08/15/2012 8:56:52 AM PDT by MEGoody (Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: MEGoody

More have been killed in the name of atheism or humanism in the past 100 years than all of the religions combined in all of history.


20 posted on 08/15/2012 9:00:07 AM PDT by MNDude ( Victimhood is the Holy Grail of liberalism)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind; All
Have you noticed ...’evil’ is the word ‘live’ turned back on itself? A very descriptive word for evil.

Once in a workshop or study group an idea was presented “a person cannot do that which they believe is WRONG”.

The doer of a wrong act justifies the reasons why it is okay to do a bad/wrong thing. They believe they have been slighted, abused, insulted, something taken from them they thought was theirs, etc. Something to consider ...

A very shallow way to respond, but nevertheless it happens. An interesting idea.

21 posted on 08/15/2012 9:06:31 AM PDT by geologist (The only answer to the troubles of this life is Jesus. A decision we all must make.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: RetiredArmy

Exactly..Its all part of the Falling Away..

Thats why I have an eerie feeling, no matter how excited I get about potentially beating Obama in this election..I just have a feeling he is America’s punishment for so many of our “citizens” mocking God.


22 posted on 08/15/2012 9:21:50 AM PDT by HailReagan78
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

“I have a few atheist friends who will object to equating their belief with “evil”.”

I’ve had the pleasure of knowing a married atheist couple whose children were baptized (Lutheran) before the parents left their faith. They live and behave like any other good Christians or other faith(s) in the neighborhood. Their kids are smart and are involved in organized sports and go to public schools. They’re all very good-looking people, not to mention their house and property being the envy of just about everyone on the block.

They say they’ve left it up to each of their children to decide on whether to subscribe to any religion or not, whether to marry, who to marry, whether to vote (R) or (D), whether to go to college or not, etc. I’ve had the oldest boy (14) babysit my youngest 3 or 4 times now and there have not been any issues...

So, what’s so terrible about atheists again?


23 posted on 08/15/2012 9:42:10 AM PDT by equaviator (There's nothing like the universe to bring you down to earth again.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: Bringbackthedraft
I don't think atheists are evil, no. They do run a rather wide spoectrum, and I have known some sterling ones. Stgerling, and quite close to me.

On the other hand, it is a little disingenuous to say "Atheists aren't Jihadists or Crusaders," when Atheists played such a star turn in the mega-murderous 20th century. Atheistic Communism left 100,000,000 corpses on the ground across the Eurasian landmass, enough to make Torquemada blanch.

24 posted on 08/15/2012 1:14:03 PM PDT by Mrs. Don-o ("The first duty of intelligent men of our day is the restatement of the obvious." George Orwell)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: equaviator

So, what’s so terrible about atheists again? ............................................ They’re not Jewish or Christian is my guess. I’ve known several, they were never a threat to anyone. Actually they were very peace loving and behaved like most other religions should. I personally don’t measure people by their religious label, I measure them by their deeds. If a person is evil, they will show it, if they are good they will show it. You don’t have to be religious to love your fellow man, if goodness is in your heart.


25 posted on 08/15/2012 1:20:55 PM PDT by Bringbackthedraft (I)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: Oztrich Boy
Umm, no. We know all about adultery by the religious, because they eventually get called out for it, from David (King, religious poet/liturgist, and adulterer) to whoever the latest televangelist preacher is, who got caught en-boink.

Here's something, though: preachers almost never justify adultery, even their own. When the truth comes out, they are shamefaced, they are usually deposed from their church calling, and they may very well repent and shed bitter tears over it because they know they were wrong. In the best cases, they ask forgiveness of those they have wronged, and try to get back on the right path with the help of god, or I would say, God.

Whereas --- and I don't have survey statisics on this of course, just what I've seen in life --- atheists, though possibly no more likely to transgress the moral code, are far more likely to say "Screw the moral code" --- to reject the very standard by which they were judged.

It's what I've observed amongst atheist University faculty. Amongst the atheist literati. And elsewhere.

26 posted on 08/15/2012 1:32:49 PM PDT by Mrs. Don-o ("The first duty of intelligent men of our day is the restatement of the obvious." George Orwell)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: HailReagan78
People simply need to read the Old Testament. God punished Israel and other nations for their unbelief AND their behavior. Floods, famine, drought, pestilences, etc. are how He accomplished this. Take a quick peek around America and see what is going on. The Nile disease, droughts all over, floods, and food shortages are coming and rising prices because of them. Folks need to pay attention.
27 posted on 08/15/2012 4:13:43 PM PDT by RetiredArmy (The Signs of the Times are clear. The days grow short. Your only way to avoid is BELIEVE in Him!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

You are dead wrong. I don’t care what your atheists friends say or think. God DOES see unbelief as SIN!!! No ifs, ands or buts about it. Unbelief will send all directly to the Lake of Fire at the Great White Throne. Don’t believe that? Don’t believe at your own peril and you will simply find out. Simple as that.


28 posted on 08/15/2012 4:17:31 PM PDT by RetiredArmy (The Signs of the Times are clear. The days grow short. Your only way to avoid is BELIEVE in Him!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

“Not defending the beliefs of the atheists, but I have a few atheist friends who will object to equating their belief with ‘evil’. Just sayin’.”

There are agnostics, who don’t positively believe in God, but don’t disbelieve, either. And then there are atheists who positively believe God does not exist and teach that doctrine. To the extent the atheists attempt to or do convert others to their beliefs, yes, I’d say they are evil.

Agnostics? Maybe not so much.


29 posted on 08/15/2012 5:32:57 PM PDT by Cincinnatus.45-70 (What do DemocRats enjoy more than a truckload of dead babies? Unloading them with a pitchfork!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: Bringbackthedraft

It is when you start making your own calls of “good” and “evil” based on your gut, or your reason, or whatever that one starts to cross into “evil.”

The Communists thought they were doing good by killing millions. Ditto the Nazis. They decided that what felt good was good.

THAT is the path to the most heinous evil.


30 posted on 08/16/2012 6:46:16 AM PDT by Crusher138 ("Then conquer we must, for our cause it is just")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: Bringbackthedraft

Atheists have the luxury of living under a Judeo-Christian society, you take that away, and leave everyone to their own definition of morality, and they will understand the consequences of having such a world view.


31 posted on 08/16/2012 6:54:19 AM PDT by dfwgator
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: Cincinnatus.45-70

Atheists ridicule the concept of faith, but the belief that there isn’t a God, is every bit an act of faith as in believing there is one.


32 posted on 08/16/2012 6:56:43 AM PDT by dfwgator
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: MEGoody

I am reluctant to refer to atheists as evil, for at least a couple of reasons. First, and most important, I remain hopeful that at least some, hopefully most, and perhaps all (with God nothing is impossible) will someday come to believe in God. Our mission, as Christians, is to encourage and foster that belief. Calling atheists (as opposed to their faithless beliefs) evil, does nothing to further our Christian mission, any more than proclaiming that certain persons are bound for eternal hell’s lake of fire. I prefer sharing the love of Christ and the inherent logic in a loving God’s existence to name-calling and insults— the old catch more flies with honey concept.

Calling a sinner evil may be accurate, but are we not all sinners (some saved by grace). I remain a sinner, but atheism is not my sin. Should we single out atheists from the rest of us? What is the value?

True faith in God (as opposed to a mere relent to brow-beating by believers) cannot be ordered by others, or even willed by one’s self. It must be arrived at by searching within one’s soul and by life experience and observation. To us believers it may be intuitive, but to those who do not (yet!) believe in God, it is as difficult as believing that the blue sky is green— until that faith is received.


33 posted on 08/16/2012 7:17:01 AM PDT by NCLaw441
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: NCLaw441
Calling a sinner evil may be accurate, but are we not all sinners (some saved by grace).

Exactly. There is no one righteous, no not one. That was kinda my point.

34 posted on 08/16/2012 8:15:10 AM PDT by MEGoody (Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: dfwgator

A very popular statement (got said loads of times in the old crevo debates), but the logic supporting it just isn’t there.

It takes faith to believe in something unseen. The opposite is not true. Unless you can make sense of the statement ‘it takes faith not to believe in something unseen’.

I’d love to know but don’t. I don’t suggest that others cannot know. Makes me a wishy washy agnostic I guess.


35 posted on 08/16/2012 12:48:30 PM PDT by dmz
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: dmz

Trey Parker of South Park said it best:

“Basically ... out of all the ridiculous religion stories which are greatly, wonderfully ridiculous — the silliest one I’ve ever heard is, ‘Yeah ... there’s this big giant universe and it’s expanding, it’s all gonna collapse on itself and we’re all just here just ‘cause ... just ‘cause’. That, to me, is the most ridiculous explanation ever.”


36 posted on 08/16/2012 12:54:16 PM PDT by dfwgator
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 35 | View Replies]

To: dmz; dfwgator
Atheists ridicule the concept of faith, but the belief that there isn’t a God, is every bit an act of faith as in believing there is one.

I’d love to know but don’t. I don’t suggest that others cannot know.

Atheists insist that others cannot know. Sounds like an act of faith to me.

37 posted on 08/16/2012 1:12:32 PM PDT by JustSayNoToNannies (A free society's default policy: it's none of government's business.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 35 | View Replies]

To: JustSayNoToNannies

I think you are speaking about celebrity atheists. I tend to ignore them as their motives are suspect. Like, are you doing this just for attention?

JMO.


38 posted on 08/16/2012 1:58:40 PM PDT by dmz
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: dfwgator

“Atheists ridicule the concept of faith, but the belief that there isn’t a God, is every bit an act of faith as in believing there is one.”

I completely agree. I don’t see how an honest atheist would not admit that.

By the way, I’m a Florida Gator, living in D/FW. Go Gators!


39 posted on 08/16/2012 6:10:49 PM PDT by Cincinnatus.45-70 (What do DemocRats enjoy more than a truckload of dead babies? Unloading them with a pitchfork!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson