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Posted by: Eric K ( )
Date: February 16, 2023 02:02PM

There is an interesting article at
https://onlysky.media/afiala/non-religion-is-sticky-and-contagious/

This was based on a Guardian article from a few weeks ago.
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/jan/22/us-churches-closing-religion-covid-christianity

A few quotes:

'Sociologists have been studying the rise of the nones for a couple of decades. Studies of “nonversion” (conversion away from religion) remind us that there are lots of individual stories and no single cause for the decline of religion. And yet, non-religion seems to be both contagious and sticky.

To say it is contagious means that it catches on. When people are exposed to non-religion and realize it is an option, they may choose it. To say it is sticky means that once people become nonreligious, they tend to stay that way. Linda Woodhead, professor of sociology of religion, explains the generational stickiness of religion as follows: “For people who say they were raised Christian, there is a 45 percent chance they will end up identifying as nones, but for those raised with ‘no religion’ there is a 95 percent probability that they will stay that way. Thus, ‘no religion’ is currently ‘sticky’ in a way Christianity is not.” '

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Posted by: Dave the Atheist ( )
Date: February 16, 2023 02:06PM

This is why purported deathbed "conversions" of Atheists are total bunk.

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Posted by: elderolddog ( )
Date: February 16, 2023 02:10PM

“No religion” is moving free, not carrying anything.

“Religious” means you’re carrying something, and the difference can really be appreciated when you get rid of the weight.

But “Love thy Neighbor” is still a good basic tenet of life, just don’t become a door mat.

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Posted by: Elder Berry ( )
Date: February 16, 2023 02:13PM

Back when the book of Mormon came out I read most Americans thought all they needed was a Bible and no church.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: February 16, 2023 05:55PM

My journey away from religion began when I saw the injustices that were heaped upon women by Catholic church of my youth. For instance, at the time, I came to see birth control as a gift from a loving God to his/her women. I came to see inequality in the church as unacceptable and unfair.

Later in high school and university, I started to study world religions and philosophies. It is difficult to accept any one group as "correct" when people have come up with so many different solutions to life's essential questions. The eastern religions and philosophies in particular fascinated me, because they were so different from the beliefs in which I was raised. The writings of the Taoist philosophers spoke to me in a way that Christianity never did.

As a young woman, I pursued what might be thought of (in the Buddhist sense,) as enlightenment. I became convinced that there was a higher knowledge that was available to the few, and that it was worth the struggle to try and obtain it. My efforts were in vain. I eventually abandoned that quest.

Even though I still saw myself as being culturally Christian (if not a believer,) for a long time I saw Jesus as a good person who was trying to do the right thing, and an example for all. Reading Reza Aslan's "Zealot" made me adjust my thinking about that. I started to see Jesus as fitting squarely into his milieu as a wandering teacher and faith healer, one of many, and not even the best regarded of the bunch. I understood that Jesus saw his mission as being to his fellow poor and rural Jews, who were being oppressed not only by the Jewish priestly class, but also by the Romans. I saw that Jesus had little use, and perhaps even contempt, for the gentiles, who subsequently followed him in large numbers.

And then I started to see religious "authorities" as men clothed in clay, no better than you or I, and probably worse. I feel that if God has anything special to say to me, s/he knows where to find me. Until then, I will proceed as I see fit.

I came to feel that we were dropped here on this planet, and that we need to figure it out. I think it comes down to, in as far as you are able to do so, be kind to others. Try to get along. Try to help others where you are able.

As for what comes afterward, nobody knows. I believe in an afterlife, but that may or may not be the case. I guess I will find out...or not. Until then, I will live my life as I see fit.

And that's it. I came to a point where I became comfortable with not knowing. I became comfortable with ambiguity. I don't think that anyone has the answers. I think that *is* the answer.

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Posted by: Lot's Wife ( )
Date: February 16, 2023 06:10PM

> As a young woman, I pursued what might be thought
> of (in the Buddhist sense,) as enlightenment. I
> became convinced that there was a higher knowledge
> that was available to the few, and that it was
> worth the struggle to try and obtain it. My
> efforts were in vain.

Maybe that is "enlightenment." Does it not free one from a sense of external duty?


-------------------
> I came to feel that we were dropped here on this
> planet. . .

The passive tense begs the question, does it not? Wouldn't it be better to say "we appeared here" just so we don't succumb to the tyranny of grammar?


------------------
> As for what comes afterward, nobody knows. I
> believe in an afterlife, but that may or may not
> be the case. I guess I will find out...or not.
> Until then, I will live my life as I see fit.

Or until dagny dies.


-------------------
> And that's it. I came to a point where I became
> comfortable with not knowing. I became comfortable
> with ambiguity. I don't think that anyone has the
> answers. I think that *is* the answer.

Yes, that comes very close to the Buddhist notion of surrendering all passions, including the need to know and even the desire to exist.

Perhaps you have achieved something like enlightenment after all.

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Posted by: Lethbridge Reprobate ( )
Date: February 17, 2023 01:35AM

That would be me. I'm an apathyist. Not sure if that's a real word but it was coined by another regular here a couple years back when I stated I don't care whether there's a gawd or not.

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Posted by: laperla not logged in ( )
Date: February 17, 2023 01:55PM

What my parents said about the Mormon relatives - "They're not comfortable with ambiguity."

Pretty much sums it up. No matter how ridiculous the theology, you know what to do.

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