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Why Atheism Will Replace Religion: The triumph of earthly pleasures over pie in the sky

☥☽✪☾DAW ☽✪☾ 2012/06/07 02:29:02

Atheism to Defeat Religion By 2038
Countries with the best standard of living are turning atheist. That shift offers a glimpse into the world's future.
Religious people are annoyed by claims that belief in God will go the way of horse transportation, and for much the same reason, specifically an improved standard of living.
 Atheism
The view that religious belief will give way to atheism is known as the secularization thesis. The specific version that I favor (1) is known as the existential security hypothesis. The basic idea is that as people become more affluent, they are less worried about lacking for basic necessities, or dying early from violence or disease. In other words they are secure in their own existence. They do not feel the need to appeal to supernatural entities to calm their fears and insecurities.
disease secure existence feel appeal supernatural entities calm fears insecurities
The notion that improving living conditions are associated with a decline in religion is supported by a mountain of evidence (1,2,3).
notion improving living conditions decline religion supported mountain evidence 123
That does not prevent some serious scholars, like political scientist Eric Kaufmann (4), from making the opposite case that religious fundamentalists will outbreed the rest of us. Yet, noisy as they can be, such groups are tiny minorities of the global population and they will become even more marginalized as global prosperity increases and standards of living improve.
Moreover, as religious fundamentalists become economically integrated, young women go to work and produce smaller families, as is currently happening for Utah's Mormons.
economically integrated young women work produce smaller families utahs mormons
The most obvious approach to estimating when the world will switch over to being majority atheist is based on economic growth. This is logical because economic development is the key factor responsible for secularization. In deriving this estimate, I used the nine most godless countries as my touchstone (excluding Estonia as a formerly communist country).
The countries were Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Sweden and the United Kingdom. These nine countries averaged out at the atheist transition in 2004 (5) with exactly half of the populations disbelieving in God. Their gross domestic product (GDP) averaged $29,822 compared to $10,855 for the average country in the world. How long will it take before the world economy has expanded sufficiently that the GDP of the average country has caught up to the average for the godless countries in 2004?
Using the average global growth rate of GDP for the past 30 years of 3.33 percent (based on International Monetary Fund data from their website), the atheist transition would occur in 2035.
based international monetary fund data website atheist transition occur 2035
Belief in God is not the only relevant measure of religion, of course. A person might believe in God in a fairly superficial way without religion affecting his or her daily life. One way of assessing the depth of religious commitment is to ask survey participants whether they think that religion is important in their daily lives as the Gallup Organization has done in worldwide nationally representative surveys.
religion important daily lives gallup organization worldwide nationally representative surveys
If fewer than 50 percent of the population agreed that religion was important to them, then the country has effectively crossed over to a secular majority. The godless countries by religiosity were Spain, South Korea, Canada, Switzerland, Uruguay, Germany and France. At a growth rate of 3.33 percent per year it would be 2041 before the average country in the world would be at an equivalent level of affluence as these godless nations.
year 2041 average country world equivalent level affluence godless nations
If national wealth drives secularization, the global population will cross an atheist threshold where the majority see religion as unimportant by 2041.
Averaging across the two measures of atheism, the entire world population would cross the atheist threshold by about 2038 (average of 2035 for disbelief and 2041 for religiosity). Although 2038 may seem improbably fast, this requires only a shift of approximately 1 percent per year whether in religiosity or belief in God. Using the Human Development Index as a clock suggests an even earlier arrival for the atheist transition (1).
god human development index clock earlier arrival atheist transition 1
Is the loss of religious belief something fear? Contrary to the claims of religious leaders, Godless countries are highly moral nations with an unusual level of social trust, economic equality, low crime and a high level of civic engagement (5). We could do with some of that.
Sources
1. Barber, N. (2012). Why atheism will replace religion: The triumph of earthly pleasures over pie in the sky. E-book, available at: http://www.amazon.com/Atheism-Will-Replace-Religion-ebook/dp/...
2. Norris, P., & Inglehart, R. (2004). Sacred and secular: Religion and politics worldwide. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
3. Barber, N. (2011). A Cross-National test of the uncertainty hypothesis of religious belief Cross-Cultural Research, 45, 318-333.
4. Kaufmann, E. (2010). Shall the religious inherit the earth? London: Profile books.
5. Zuckerman, P. (2008). Society without God: What the least religious nations can tell us about contentment. New York: New York University Press.


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Top Opinion

  • Curmudgeon 2012/06/07 03:31:26
    Curmudgeon
    +4
    I'm hoping it happens sooner rather than later before some religious nut job with nuclear weapons starts world war three.

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Opinions

  • elijahin24 2012/06/08 14:13:02
    elijahin24
    Beautiful, Daw. As usual.
  • flaca BN-0 2012/06/07 22:52:32
    flaca BN-0
    Not sure if it's turning away from religion: more turning away from churches/organized religion. Europeans claim to believe in God, but many of them don't go to church.
  • Sadisticon 2012/06/07 19:27:30
    Sadisticon
    Religion has made many spurious claims over the period of its reign and dominion of human culture and civilisation. Then Science (that Bitch!) came along and started asking a bunch of questions and pointing to some big, gaping, holes in Religion's game.

    Humans stood around and pointed at stupid Science, laughing and giggling; but Science pimped those bitches out with antisepsis, internal combustion engines, electric lights and computers (!).

    Humanity, all decked out in synthetic fabrics, jacked up on steroids, and taking vicarious trips around the galaxy via satellites and spaceships and super sized telescopes, looked back at Religion and delivered that classic Janet Jackson line "What have you done for me... late-ly???" Science wrapped his big-ole Pimp Daddy arm around humanity, squeezed its tit and jumped on his cosmic hog and drove off into the nebula...
  • Keith 2012/06/07 15:27:10
    Keith
    For 70 years they tried to stamp out religion in the USSR and it didn't work. The athiests have been around much longer than that and won't succeed either.
  • ☥☽✪☾DAW... Keith 2012/06/07 18:17:48
    ☥☽✪☾DAW ☽✪☾
    +1
    for 1700 years the Abraham Religion tried to Exterminate Pagans
    who have been around 50,000+ years
    We are Still here and only Growing in number
  • elijahin24 Keith 2012/06/08 14:17:29
    elijahin24
    +1
    Christians have used every form of atrocity to stamp out Pagans, atheists, Muslims, Jews, and every non-Christian belief system on earth, as well as other Christian faiths which "don't practice the right way". And yet it is the Christian numbers which are shrinking, and the other ideas which are growing. I don't know about the up-coming deadline, nor do I think Christianity will ever be eradicated, or even that it should be; but you are about to lose your stronghold on the world. THAT day IS coming.
  • ☥☽✪☾DAW... elijahin24 2012/06/08 14:22:11
    ☥☽✪☾DAW ☽✪☾
    Amen!
    amen  egyptian god amen  egyptian god
  • Keith elijahin24 2012/06/08 15:43:21
    Keith
    In that case I'm moving to the Moon.
  • elijahin24 Keith 2012/06/08 15:58:25
    elijahin24
    I think you'll find it uncomfortable up there, but do as you will.
  • ☥☽✪☾DAW... elijahin24 2012/06/08 16:34:04
    ☥☽✪☾DAW ☽✪☾
    The moon people will kick them off the moon
  • PULLLLLLL! 2012/06/07 15:12:27
    PULLLLLLL!
    +1
    Say it aint so! What in the world are we going to do without all the delusional people making decisions for us?????? We are Doomed, I tell ya, Doomed... LMAO
  • Radical Ed PULLLLLLL! 2012/06/08 19:42:50
  • brutusin~ Proud Apetheist 2012/06/07 14:56:18
  • Odinsown 2012/06/07 14:21:52
    Odinsown
    No, it makes too much money. Being a crazy preacher pays really well, and the benefits! Oh the benefits! Dental, vision, the ability to do whatever you want despite the consequences and just write it off as religious freedom, and an protest as persecution. Such good benefits.
  • Anonymousforobvious 2012/06/07 10:14:57
    Anonymousforobvious
    Seems about time we grew up.
  • darwolf 2012/06/07 05:52:03
    darwolf
    When atheism wins. Who are we going to blame when we are still killing each other.
  • brutusi... darwolf 2012/06/07 14:54:14
    brutusin~ Proud Apetheist
    Each other.
  • Radical Ed 2012/06/07 05:33:25
    Radical Ed
    if we cannot trust reality, what can be trusted?
  • PULLLLLLL! Radical Ed 2012/06/07 15:20:36
    PULLLLLLL!
    +2
    Reality is a bitch of a mistress,, however no matter how you try to excape it, with religion, booze, drugs, or some other mental attempt,, She will always be there when you wake up...
  • Dagon 2012/06/07 04:48:27
  • Guru_T_Firefly 2012/06/07 04:07:32
    Guru_T_Firefly
    +3
    We can only hope that mankind will someday outgrow it's desire for superstition and imaginary deities.
  • Pat 2012/06/07 03:50:06
    Pat
    +1
    Did you write the last statement, "I have no holy book nor do I need one"?
  • ☥☽✪☾DAW... Pat 2012/06/07 12:24:45
  • ☥☽✪☾DAW... Pat 2012/06/07 12:25:30
    ☥☽✪☾DAW ☽✪☾
    +1
    Yep its a line from my Spirituality Blogs
  • Pat ☥☽✪☾DAW... 2012/06/07 19:58:02
    Pat
    +1
    I knew it had to be you. I'm getting to know your writing style! I'm keeping a copy for myself. Thanks so much!
  • Curmudgeon 2012/06/07 03:31:26
    Curmudgeon
    +4
    I'm hoping it happens sooner rather than later before some religious nut job with nuclear weapons starts world war three.
  • M.C 2012/06/07 03:22:28
    M.C
    +4
    the sooner the better...
  • Jbug799 2012/06/07 03:13:37
    Jbug799
    +1
    Daw, Honey, you spend a lot of time on this, but I am beginning to believe this could be true! Things, they are a changing!
  • Drue-AFCL 2012/06/07 02:48:44
    Drue-AFCL
    +1
    We'll see?!?!
  • reaper 2012/06/07 02:44:25 (edited)
    reaper
    +4
    it's bound to happen. but for all you crazies I will see to it that your religious texts is preserved because it is historic and helps give us a view of what we used to be like. also this.

    bond crazies religious texts preserved historic helps view
  • JoeM~PW... reaper 2012/06/09 03:38:52
    JoeM~PWCM~JLA
    There is no necesary incompatiability between science and Christianity.
  • thecutesttentacle 2012/06/07 02:41:30
    thecutesttentacle
    +1
    hahaha facts
  • The Elitist Libtard SodaJerk 2012/06/07 02:39:14
    The Elitist Libtard SodaJerk
    +1
    Sounds too good to be true. Especially since there is a great likelihood that I will live to see 2038.
  • Silversnake 2012/06/07 02:37:35
    Silversnake
    +2
    Atheism will triumph because people don't think for themselves; they just go with the popular oppinion which, in this day and age, is atheism
  • Guru_T_... Silvers... 2012/06/07 04:09:09
    Guru_T_Firefly
    +2
    Atheism will triumph because religious people don't think for themselves.
  • Silvers... Guru_T_... 2012/06/07 05:24:35
    Silversnake
    Some religious people don't, but I've met many atheist who are only atheist because they hear that it's "logical," and hear that beliving in God is like having "imaginary friends." I've yet to meet an atheist who truly knows one thing about the origins of the universe or even other ideas that atheist claim to have but can't explain when I try to have an educated conversation about it with them

    For many people, atheism is simply and alternative to educated reflection on life, and they choose it because it's easier than believing in a higher being or having to commit to a religion
  • Guru_T_... Silvers... 2012/06/07 13:00:26
    Guru_T_Firefly
    Conversely, I've yet to meet a believer that truly knows one thing about the origins of the universe. They know what their religious faith tells them and no more. This is proven in the fact that if their beliefs were to be proven incorrect, most would still cling to them instead of revising their religion to fit the facts.
  • Silvers... Guru_T_... 2012/06/07 17:40:18
    Silversnake
    +1
    Then both are just as bad
  • elijahin24 Silvers... 2012/06/08 14:31:13
    elijahin24
    +1
    I think you've missed the point of atheism. I'll tell you now that I can't explain the origin of the universe; but that admission is a good thing. It doesn't reflect ignorance. It reflects an honest humility. Atheism literally means "not religious". It isn't inherently anti-religious. It's just not religious. As an atheist, I believe in ideas, logic, and reason. My own logic (not what someone tells me) leads me to think that it is more likely that either the universe has NO origin, or that at least the elements that make it up have none. I may be wrong, but I accept that. Science celebrates the questions as it searches for answers. Religion claims to HAVE the answer, without bothering to study the question. Science insists that the conclusions it draws, be tested and challenged, and if possible: disproven. Religion calls any attempt at this "heresy".
    It isn't that science is easier than believing in a higher being, or an easier commitment. In my own experience, it would be much less taxing, to simply say "God did it", than to research and study, and admit when I'm wrong. But it isn't intellectually honest.
    I'm not condemning believers. If you've honestly studied the questions that trouble you, and the best conclusion you've been able to reach, is that a god is behind all of it; I applaud your effort and celebrate our differences. But for me, God seems like one of the least likely conclusions to draw.
  • Silvers... elijahin24 2012/06/08 15:18:56
    Silversnake
    I'm glad this is how you feel about it, but many atheist I meet are as dogmatic as any Catholic priest, who equally condemn believers as many "Christians" condemn non-belivers. I think a lot of them confuse factual science with a possible speculation on something that happened billions of years and can never be proven

    In my own logic, I believe there was a God that gave origin to the universe mostly because of the nature of it. Things like the existence of free-will and intelligence in humans that don't exist in animals. However I do also believe that God incorporated certain long-term aspects in His creations, such as adaptation and cell development. So I don't think the discovery of science is something that should be condemned by Christians

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