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Infographic: One in 5 Americans has no religion

The fastest growing ‘religious’ group in America is made up of people with no religion at all, according to a Pew survey.

By Charyn Pfeuffer - MSN Living Editor Mar 29, 2013 5:35PM

Today, one in five in the American public doesn't identify with any religion, the highest share since Pew Research Center began this poll in 2007, reports GOOD. Still, the United States is more religious than some other countries.

Image: Religious Americans / Courtesy of Good.is, http://aka.ms/goodMore from MSN Living: Spring cleaning: 13 things to replace right now

Take a look at how religious beliefs in the United States compare to other first world Western European nations.

  • Fifty-eight percent of Americans believe religion is important to them compared to less than 20 percent in France and Britain.
  • More than half of Americans believe it is necessary to believe in God to be moral and have good values, while 20 percent or less think so in France, Spain and Britain.
  • Among those who are religiously unaffiliated, most believe in nothing at all.
  • Since 2007, Protestants have lost 5 percent of affiliated Americans, Catholics have lost 1 percent and those with no religious affiliation have increased 4.3 percent.
  • Those who are religiously unaffiliated make up the highest percentage – 24 percent – of registered Democratic voters.

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What do you think about these statistics?

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Images: Courtesy of GOOD ,www.good.is; original published at http://www.good.is/posts/infographic-the-rise-of-americans-with-no-religion/

501Comments
Jun 29, 2013 8:27AM
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Today, in spite of my bad experiences with the Catholic Church, I attend Mass daily, even though I work a 40 hour week. On Saturday I will stay for two Masses. I know what the Bible says and that God is real and so is Jesus Christ real and that he is alive, I also believe in the Holy Spirit.  I know that on the day i die, I will have to give an account of my life before my righteous judge, Jesus Christ. I have had to overlook the hypocrisy of the Catholic Church and some of its priests and sisters. It is still the only Church founded by Jesus Christ and is the Church that Jesus said "I will build my church on this rock and the gate of hell shall not prevail against it. I never heard anything about Fatima, Portugal all during the time I went to religious instructions. Now I have many books on it and have gone to original sources to study it. What occurred there in 1916 and 1917 were the most significant events in the 20th Century. They are still being felt today. An angel appeared three times to three illiterate sheperd children. The Blessed Mother appeared to them over a six month period. All that happened there is true. One need only read the accounts. The Catholic Church dropped the ball by not fulfilling what the Blessed Mother asked to be done. It is possible the second world war could have been avoided, the Korean war and the Vietnam war would also have never happened. But, not one of the Popes who had the authority did what they were told to do. When God the father wants something done, he spells it out and expects it to be done exactly to the letter. One need only review the accounts in the Old Testament where God told Moses to speak to the rock and it would bring forth water and instead of speaking to the rock, Moses strikes it with his staff. The rock brought forth water anyway, however, for this act of disobedience when the hebrews were to cross the Jordan River, Moses was forbidden to cross over with them. When Naman, the Syrian General was told by a young peasant girl that if he wanted to be cured of leprosy, he should go to the prophet Elija and he would be cured, So Naman went to see Elija, but Elija did not come out to even see him. Instead he sent word to Naman to bathe in the Jordan River seven times and after the seventh time his leprosy would be gone. Naman was " miffed" that Elija did not even see him and he said "whats wrong with the water here? His officers had to persuade him to just do as Elija said. So Naman did go tot the Jordan River and he bathed in the Jordan River six times and when he bathed the seventh time, his skin became as clear as a new born babe. Naman, a Syrian General did exactly as he was told and he received his healing. Why did not the Popes, and there were several, do exactly as the Blessed Mother asked? Probably because of the bureacracy of the Vatican, fear of the Soviet Union. In short they deferred to man instead of doing what God, the Father required. The result? The Soviet Union spread its influence far and wide , influencing China to become communist, making all the eastern european countries communist, making North Korea, and North Vietnam, and Cuba communist. There were more millions killed by Joseph Stalin than by Hitler. Yet both these holocausts could have been prevented. Does the Catholic Church have "All of it right"? Who can say? I believe they have most of it right. Yet no church can give you a guarantee. We are each responsible for our own actions. The sayings and teachings of Jesus Christ are going to be the deciding factor of who gets saved and who is condemned .
Jun 29, 2013 7:44AM
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I went to catholic religious instructions every friday afternoon and every sunday after the 830 mass .  I only learned the other day that when the "bells ring" during the Mass, that that is when the wafers are consecrated into the body of Christ, and the second time they are rung by an altar server it means the wine is consecrated to the Blood of Christ.  I only learned it as a result of a very young child who called in and asked a priest that question. I was given a small book and a rosary for First Communion but the sisters never taught us the rosary. Im talking about from 1953 until 1965. I never knew the parts of the Mass or what was going on. I heard of the Blessed Sacrament but never was told was it was. So my religious education was without value. I have had to learn myself. I was the only child out of four who was not sent to the parochial school. My brother went up to third grade and was failed. The sister he had made him come up to the front of the class and say three times (each time bending over toward the class) " Hee-Haw I am a Donkey",  This same sister also made other kids sit in the waste basket if they got something wrong.  My brother did not tell our mother about this but the kids told their parents about it and they called my mother. As a result my brother was sent to a public school as i was. When I got to the third grade and was subject to this same sister, she ridiculed me in front of the class by saying "He never gives anything to the missions" ( I never knew what she was talking about and I never had a nickel to my name). We were poor, and I never got anything but hand me down clothes and old shoes worn out by my older brothers.  This same sister again saud to the class "Look at him, he comes in here dressed like a ragamuffin".  If you came from a wealthy family you were treated differently.
Jun 15, 2013 5:17PM
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I'm one of those unbelieving liberals but I don't consider myself to be a Democrat because I oppose the corporately  controlled DNC.  I am more of a civil libertarian progressive than a person who supports Obama, Reid and Pelosi.  

 

I was raised Catholic but I never believed but theistic religion is inherently illogical. I attended mass until I was in college because it is what my parents wanted me to do and because of the Catholic guilt trip that I felt if I didn't do my time on the pews. I finally came to the conclusion that I don't need to believe in god to be a good person about the time that the priest pedophile scandal was being a public matter and that was my impetus to leave. I've never been back to a Catholic church except for weddings or funerals.

 

My religious views are more in line with the 4 noble truths of Buddhism or secular humanism.  I do support the Unitarian Universalist Church because of their goal of positive social change.  

 

Most people have ha hard time publically stating that they are an atheist because the general public does not understand that just because you don't believe in a supernatural religious deity it doesn't make any statement about the morals or the ethics of the person in question. You can be a very moral atheist just you can also be an amoral believer. The examples of the latter are pedophile priests, televangelists and fundamentalists of all stripes who kill and profit in the name of religion.  

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Religious worship is forced collectivism and does not encourage independent thought.  Most churches/temples require one way to believe and what is right and why the others are wrong.  If Jesus returned today alot of people would feel his whip in God's house.  Christianity and Islam were born from Judaism and Abraham.  The Jews got their ideas from the Egyptians and Persians...none are wrong or right.  All religions boil down to one word ...Belief.  If you choose not to that's your belief.  How many religious sects do we have?  Can they all be wrong/right?
Apr 2, 2013 3:26AM
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I would also like to see the data on Republicans. I'm not sure if skipping them is saying something bad about one party or the other, or if the infographic creators thought it would be pointless to illustrate religious affiliation for a political party associated with the "religious right". No idea what hidden message is there (if any) in that, but it seems odd. Every Republican can't possibly be a Bible-thumper, just as every Democrat can't possibly be agnostic.
Apr 1, 2013 8:35PM
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This means that one in five has not been corrupted by any of the myriad of depraved

and perverted religions floating about!

The good news is that they make great candidates for the True religion of their Creator,

The Lord Jesus Christ and his Church;The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints!

 

Apr 1, 2013 5:18PM
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Another thing to consider is the cumulative impact,throughout history, that religion

has had on civilization: the self righteous view that ones own religion is the only

one that is based on "fact" and that only its followers gods "chosen" people, which

in turn has been used time and again as a basis to justify all kinds of brutality,war,

destruction, persecution, and so on that the negative so overwhelmingly outweighs

the positive that it's not even an issue of debate.

Apr 1, 2013 4:58PM
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The true definition of intelligence is the natural,inate understanding of logic and proficiency with its use and application along with the degreeof advancement  or complexity of the material one is ultimately capable of  learning. In other words,

to be able to look at an argument and understand without having to be taught or

told how or why it is logically sound or flawed and to draw a conclusion only if one

can account detail by detail from the premise and the line of reasoning to show an

intelligible connection to the conclusion.

Since faith is an irrational leap to a conclusion with nothing to support it, to believe

something on faith not only indicates but actually requires a lack of such capacity

and therefore a lack of intellect.

Why do you think it is that the scientific community, the most intellegent demographic

of society, is overwhelmingly atheist? Mathematics and scientific method are founded

on logic.

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