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June 12th, 2012
04:49 PM ET

Pew survey: Doubt of God growing quickly among millennials

By Dan Merica, CNN

Washington (CNN) – The percentage of Americans 30 and younger who harbor some doubts about God’s existence appears to be growing quickly, according to a recent Pew Research Center survey. While most young Americans, 68%, told Pew they never doubt God’s existence, that’s a 15-point drop in just five years.

In 2007, 83% of American millennials said they never doubted God’s existence.

More young people are expressing doubts about God now than at any time since Pew started asking the question a decade ago. Thirty-one percent disagreed with the statement “I never doubt the existence of God,” double the number who disagreed with it in 2007.

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When asked about doubts of God, no other generation showed a change of more than 2% in the past five years.

The survey found that the percentage of millennials who identify with a religion is remaining constant, while most other generations have seen religious identification increase in the past 10 years.

The findings about millennials and religion were part of a 168-page report that Pew released June 4 but were largely overlooked.

“Notably, people younger than 30 are substantially less likely than older people to say prayer is an important part of their lives,” the report said.

“Research on generational patterns shows that this is not merely a lifecycle effect,” it continued. “The Millennial generation is far less religious than were other preceding generations when they were the same age years ago.”

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The findings are part of Pew’s 2012 American Values Survey, which touches on issues including political partisanship, gay marriage and abortion.

Despite the findings on millennials, the survey shows that the United States continues to be a highly religious nation, with most Americans identifying with a particular faith.

Seventy-six percent of all respondents said prayer is an important part of their lives and agreed that “we all will be called before god at the Judgment Day to answer for our sins.” About 80% said they have never doubted the existence of God.

The report points to a growing divide between the youngest and oldest Americans on belief, religion and social issues.

According to Jesse Galef, communications director for the Secular Student Alliance, the growth in “doubting” youths has led to a surge in secular student groups.

“For a lot of millennial atheists, they are expecting to find a group, they are coming to campus, and if they don’t find one, they are starting one,” Galef said. “This is completely different than what other generations grew up with.”

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The Secular Student Alliance has affiliates on 357 American campuses, Galef said, up from 81 such affiliates in 2007.

Galef says the Internet has created a place for young people to discuss religious doubts.

“It enables anybody to have open discussions without fearing if their parents would find out or what their communities would say,” he said. "The more safe places we create for young people to discuss their doubts, the more they can inspire questions in others."

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Atheism • Polls

soundoff (4,013 Responses)
  1. Lover of Knowledge

    @ sam stone: lmao!!!

    June 13, 2012 at 11:07 am |
    • ironically...

      You're still ignorant in using reply button.

      June 13, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
  2. TexanSwagger86

    Christian – "What if your wrong?"
    Atheist – "What if YOUR wrong?"
    Christian – 'tear'

    June 13, 2012 at 11:04 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Jew: Both of you need a dictionary.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:09 am |
    • Thinker

      Haha! nice Doc!

      June 13, 2012 at 11:37 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Yeah funny Doc

      June 13, 2012 at 11:52 am |
  3. shep

    Mitt Romney doesn't believe in God. He's a Mormon.

    June 13, 2012 at 10:58 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      You're just bitter becuase you can't hie to Kolob.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:04 am |
    • Madtown

      According to Mitt, you don't believe in God. Who's right?

      June 13, 2012 at 11:05 am |
  4. Reality

    Why the doubt grows IN ALL AGE GROUPS:

    ONLY FOR THE NEW MEMBERS OF THIS BLOG:

    The Apostles' Creed 2012: (updated by yours truly and based on the studies of historians and theologians of the past 200 years)

    Should I believe in a god whose existence cannot be proven
    and said god if he/she/it exists resides in an unproven,
    human-created, spirit state of bliss called heaven??

    I believe there was a 1st century CE, Jewish, simple,
    preacher-man who was conceived by a Jewish carpenter
    named Joseph living in Nazareth and born of a young Jewish
    girl named Mary. (Some say he was a mamzer.)

    Jesus was summarily crucified for being a temple rabble-rouser by
    the Roman troops in Jerusalem serving under Pontius Pilate,

    He was buried in an unmarked grave and still lies
    a-mouldering in the ground somewhere outside of
    Jerusalem.

    Said Jesus' story was embellished and "mythicized" by
    many semi-fiction writers. A descent into Hell, a bodily resurrection
    and ascension stories were promulgated to compete with the
    Caesar myths. Said stories were so popular that they
    grew into a religion known today as Catholicism/Christianity
    and featuring dark-age, daily wine to blood and bread to body rituals
    called the eucharistic sacrifice of the non-atoning Jesus.

    Amen
    (references used are available upon request)
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    June 13, 2012 at 10:55 am |
    • Bible just a theory

      ONE SCIENTIST who finds a cure for one disease is worth a MILLION PREACHERS. Jesus had a chance to eliminate a terrible disease from the world, and instead – according to the story made up 50 years later – he turned water into wine. It took 2000 years for the scientists to make up for Jesus' negligence by eliminating SMALLPOX and they're working on ending polio.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:04 am |
  5. TexanSwagger86

    Atheist – "Great! People are thinking for themselves!"
    Theist – "Oh no. People are leaning on their own understanding."

    June 13, 2012 at 10:50 am |
    • TexanSwagger86

      Christian not Theist

      June 13, 2012 at 10:50 am |
    • TexanSwagger86

      Atheist – "If you can show me evidence that god exists then I will believe in god.
      Christian – "Tides come in, tides go out. You can't explain that."

      June 13, 2012 at 11:01 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Atheist – I can do anything with science
      Christian – Can you pay for my sin?

      June 13, 2012 at 11:33 am |
  6. Seriously

    Consider these quotes, and how you might feel if you lived in a country where these sentiments were mainstream:

    “Our leader was not elected…he was appointed by Allah.”
    “Those who refuse to submit publicly to the eternal sanctions of Allah…must be denied citizenship."
    “I, your Provincial Governor, do hereby proclaim… a day of prayer and fasting for our country.”
    “Allah called me to this government position…my family fasted for three days to make sure it was true.”
    “"I would not put a Christian among my advisors, or in my government."
    “(our founding doc.uments) are quite clear that we would create law based on Allah of the Qur’an and Sharia Law, it’s pretty simple.”
    “I hope I will live to see the day when…we won't have any public schools. The Mosques will have taken over them over again and Imams will be running them. What a happy day that will be!"
    “There will never be world peace until Allah's house and Allah's people are given their rightful place of leadership at the top of the world."

    These statements should rightfully alarm you. Now consider this, YOU DO live in that country, and these are not Taliban quotes. In the above quotes the religious references have been changed. They are quotes from prominent, politically powerful Americans who would establish religious control over America’s government. Here are the actual quotes:

    “George Bush was not elected by a majority of the voters in the United States, he was appointed by God.” –Lt. General William Boykin, US Army
    “Those who refuse to submit publicly to the eternal sanctions of God by submitting to His Church's public marks of the covenant–baptism and holy communion–must be denied citizenship." –Gary North, Inst.itute for Christian Economics
    “I, Rick Perry, Governor of Texas, do hereby proclaim August 6, 2011, to be A Day of Prayer and Fasting for Our Nation.” –Rick Perry, Texas Governor and Republican Presidential Candidate
    “God called me to run for this office, and my husband fasted for 3 days to make sure it was true.” –Michelle Bachman, US Senator and Republican Presidential Candidate
    “"I would not put a Muslim in my cabinet, or in my administration." –Herman Cain, Republican Presidential Candidate
    “(Our founding doc.uments) are quite clear that we would create law based on the God of the Bible and the 10 commandments, it’s pretty simple.” –Sarah Palin
    I hope I will live to see the day when, as in the early days of our country, we won't have any public schools. The churches will have taken over them over again and Christians will be running them. What a happy day that will be!" - Jerry Falwell
    There will never be world peace until God's house and God's people are given their rightful place of leadership at the top of the world." –Pat Robertson

    These statements should be no more frightening in an Islamic or a Christian context – this kind of rhetoric is a serious threat no matter who it comes from. Theocracy is dangerous no matter whose God is invoked. We hear these things from pious politicians every day and are likely desensitized to them, but even momentary consideration reveals them to be un-American to the core. Religious fundamentalists make no secret of their goal of controlling our government and establishing their narrow beliefs as law. We must not let that happen – not here, not in our country.

    It happens in small steps – the Ten Commandments in courthouses, prayer and creationism (“Intelligent Design”) in schools, revising science, history, and civics textbooks in Texas, State-endorsed prayer rallies, faith-based initiatives, and on and on – and because these steps may individually seem harmless, many people underestimate their consequences. That is why we must stay alert and fight to keep church and state separate. We should shudder whenever a politician or policymaker alludes to his or her religious beliefs as a justification for public policy. We should be deeply suspi.cious of anyone who claims to be chosen by God to lead us. We should aggressively defend our free society against any religious group who would hope to gain control over it.

    Do not underestimate the importance of defending the separation of church and state. Stand up for it at every opportunity with your voice and your vote.

    June 13, 2012 at 10:48 am |
    • Hal A. Louya

      Excellent post.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:02 am |
    • TexanSwagger86

      Great point. Very true.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:06 am |
    • Mara

      if this forum had 'like' buttons, you'd be a top commentor

      June 13, 2012 at 11:15 am |
    • Thinker

      Well said!

      June 13, 2012 at 11:44 am |
  7. Trumpy

    It truly baffles me that people in 2012 are still following, with the assumption of *literal truth*, what are essentially the lingering Bronze Age myths of a technologically primitive, geographically isolated, semi-nomadic, shepherding people.

    Baffles...

    June 13, 2012 at 10:47 am |
    • Mara

      some people feel better if they've got 'rules' to follow and a supervisor making notes on their performance and policy compliance for later review from the Big Guy in HR (Heaven's Reservations).

      What I find funny about religious folk is that every darn one of them seems to believe that THEY are definely holy enough to go to whatever 'heaven' is in their theology. I've yet to hear even one say, "I don't know....I did my best but I don't think it's enough to get me into heaven." Talk about overweening pride!!

      June 13, 2012 at 11:13 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Mara, if you actually know any Christians you don't know them very well. No Christian believes he is holy enough to get to heaven. Holiness comes from God. It is He who makes us holy. Whether we go to heaven or not depends on Him, not on us. Our lives here are a commission from Him to do as He did while he was with us. Some succeed better than others.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:37 am |
  8. Believer II

    "Whosoever deny me before man, him will I also deny before my Father, which is in Heaven", Matthew 10;33; John 6:35

    June 13, 2012 at 10:44 am |
    • Horus

      Quotes from a many times over invalidated source are meaningless.....

      June 13, 2012 at 10:48 am |
    • Lover of Knowledge

      Knowledge of reality trumps myths that induce the weak to submit to fear. Religion is for the ignorant. Period.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:03 am |
    • Reality

      Matt 10: 33 as per Professor Gerd Ludemann in his book, Jesus After 2000 Years, p. 169:

      "Matt 10:27-33, All the sayings are inauthentic as they derive from a latter situation of the community stamped by persecution. "

      See http://www.faithfutures.org/JDB/jdb028.html for added information and conclusions.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:07 am |
    • Trumpy

      You DO realize that quotes from the Bible to try and convince people who don't believe in the Bible are pointless, right?

      June 13, 2012 at 11:13 am |
    • Reality

      And John's Gospel is of questionable historic value.

      To wit:

      From Professor Bruce Chilton in his book, Rabbi Jesus,

      "Conventionally, scholarship has accorded priority to the first three gospels in historical work on Jesus, putting progressively less credence in works of late date. John's Gospel for example is routinely dismissed as a source......

      From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gospel_of_John#Authorship

      "Since "the higher criticism" of the 19th century, some historians have largely rejected the gospel of John as a reliable source of information about the historical Jesus.[3][4] "[M]ost commentators regard the work as anonymous,"[5] and date it to 90-100."

      "The authorship has been disputed since at least the second century, with mainstream Christianity believing that the author is John the Apostle, son of Zebedee. Modern experts usually consider the author to be an unknown non-eyewitness, though many apologetic Christian scholars still hold to the conservative Johannine view that ascribes authorship to John the Apostle."

      And from Professor Gerd Ludemann, in his book, Jesus After 2000 Years, p. 416,

      "Anyone looking for the historical Jesus will not find him in the Gospel of John. "

      See also http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/john.html

      June 13, 2012 at 11:15 am |
    • *facepalm*

      oh oh oh, can I try one:

      "If a man still prophesies, his parents, father and mother, shall say to him, "You shall not live, because you have spoken a lie in the name of the Lord." When he prophesies, his parents, father and mother, shall thrust him through."
      Zechariah 13:3 NAB

      June 13, 2012 at 11:16 am |
  9. Huebert

    "While most young Americans, 68%, told Pew they never doubt God’s existence, that’s a 15-point drop in just five years."

    A drop that large that fast is staggering. I bet by the time we millennials are having grandchildren religion will be regarded as just another mythology.

    June 13, 2012 at 10:39 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      The power of grandchildren to induce faith may stagger you again later in life LOL

      June 13, 2012 at 11:06 am |
    • Huebert

      It sure didn't work for my grandmother.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:15 am |
    • *facepalm*

      I imagine that I'll look at my grandchildren's belief in something the same way I look at my own children's belief. When talking about Santa Claus I just think to myself 'how can grown, rational, intelligent adults believe essentially the same thing?'

      June 13, 2012 at 11:18 am |
  10. Primewonk

    No infant is born a Catholic. Or a Baptist, or a Lutheran, or a Mormon. No infant is born a Jew, or a Muslim. No child is born a Wiccan, or Pagan, or Animist. Just like no child is born racist, or misogynistic, or hômophobic, or xenophobic. No infant is born a bigot.

    Alll these are examples of things children are taught. Taught by their parents, caregivers, and family members.

    Your religious beliefs are a construct of how, when, and where you were born and raised. If you were born to fundamentalist Christian parents in Mississippi, the odds are you will have those same beliefs, and you will claim those beliefs are the one true way to believe, and that god wants you to think gays are icky. If you had been born to fundamentalist Muslim parents in Tehran, odds are that you are a fundamentalist Muslim, and claim that those beliefs are the one true way to believe, as you dream of flying planes into buildings. If you had been born in Rome in the 1200's, the way you believe and practice your faith would be much different.

    June 13, 2012 at 10:35 am |
    • Madtown

      An excellent point that is completely lost on fundamentalists.

      June 13, 2012 at 10:39 am |
  11. Colin

    I guess that a few questions should help shed light on the relationship between Christianity and rational thought.

    The completely absurd theory that all 7,000,000,000 human beings are simultaneously being supervised 24 hours a day, every day of their lives by an immortal, invisible being for the purposes of reward or punishment in the “afterlife” comes from the field of:

    (a) Astronomy;

    (b) Medicine;

    (c) Economics; or

    (d) Christianity

    You are about 70% likely to believe the entire Universe began less than 10,000 years ago with only one man, one woman and a talking snake if you are a:

    (a) historian;

    (b) geologist;

    (c) NASA astronomer; or

    (d) Christian

    I have convinced myself that gay $ex is a choice and not genetic, but then have no explanation as to why only gay people have ho.mo$exual urges. I am

    (a) A gifted psychologist

    (b) A well respected geneticist

    (c) A highly educated sociologist

    (d) A Christian with the remarkable ability to ignore inconvenient facts.

    I honestly believe that, when I think silent thoughts like, “please god, help me pass my exam tomorrow,” some invisible being is reading my mind and will intervene and alter what would otherwise be the course of history in small ways to help me. I am

    (a) a delusional schizophrenic;

    (b) a naïve child, too young to know that that is silly

    (c) an ignorant farmer from Sudan who never had the benefit of even a fifth grade education; or

    (d) your average Christian

    Millions and millions of Catholics believe that bread and wine turns into the actual flesh and blood of a dead Jew from 2,000 years ago because:

    (a) there are obvious visible changes in the condiments after the Catholic priest does his hocus pocus;

    (b) tests have confirmed a divine presence in the bread and wine;

    (c) now and then their god shows up and confirms this story; or

    (d) their religious convictions tell them to blindly accept this completely fvcking absurd nonsense.

    I believe that an all powerful being, capable of creating the entire cosmos watches me have $ex to make sure I don't do anything "naughty". I am

    (a) A victim of child molestation

    (b) A r.ape victim trying to recover

    (c) A mental patient with paranoid delusions

    (d) A Christian

    The only discipline known to often cause people to kill others they have never met and/or to commit suicide in its furtherance is:

    (a) Architecture;

    (b) Philosophy;

    (c) Archeology; or

    (d) Religion

    What is it that most differentiates science and all other intellectual disciplines from religion:

    (a) Religion tells people not only what they should believe, but what they are morally obliged to believe on pain of divine retribution, whereas science, economics, medicine etc. has no “sacred cows” in terms of doctrine and go where the evidence leads them;

    (b) Religion can make a statement, such as “there is a composite god comprised of God the Father, Jesus and the Holy Spirit”, and be totally immune from experimentation and challenge, whereas science can only make factual assertions when supported by considerable evidence;

    (c) Science and the scientific method is universal and consistent all over the World whereas religion is regional and a person’s religious conviction, no matter how deeply held, is clearly nothing more than an accident of birth; or

    (d) All of the above.

    If I am found wandering the streets flagellating myself, wading into a filth river, mutilating my child’s genitals or kneeling down in a church believing that a being is somehow reading my inner thoughts and prayers, I am likely driven by:

    (a) a deep psychiatric issue;

    (b) an irrational fear or phobia;

    (c) a severe mental degeneration caused by years of drug abuse; or

    (d) my religious belief.

    Who am I? I don’t pay any taxes. I never have. Any money my organization earns is tax free and my own salary is also tax free, at the federal, state and local level. Despite contributing nothing to society, but still enjoying all its benefits, I feel I have the right to tell others what to do. I am

    (a) A sleazy Wall Street banker

    (b) A mafia boss

    (c) A drug pusher; or

    (d) A Catholic Priest, Protestant Minister or Jewish Rabbi.

    What do the following authors all have in common – Jean Paul Sartre, Voltaire, Denis Diderot, Victor Hugo, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Immanuel Kant, David Hume, René Descartes, Francis Bacon, John Milton, John Locke, and Blaise Pascal:

    (a) They are among the most gifted writers the World has known;

    (b) They concentrated on opposing dogma and opening the human mind and spirit to the wonders of free thought and intellectual freedom;

    (c) They were intimidated by the Catholic Church and put on the Church’s list of prohibited authors; or

    (d) All of the above.

    The AIDS epidemic will kill tens of millions in poor African and South American countries before we defeat it. Condoms are an effective way to curtail its spread. As the Pope still has significant influence over the less educated masses in these parts of the World, he has exercised this power by:

    (a) Using some of the Vatican’s incomprehensible wealth to educate these vulnerable people on health family planning and condom use;

    (b) Supporting government programs that distribute condoms to high risk groups;

    (c) Using its myriad of churches in these regions to distribute condoms; or

    (d) Scaring people into NOT using condoms, based upon his disdainful and aloof view that it is better that a person die than go against the Vatican’s position on contraceptive use.

    June 13, 2012 at 10:34 am |
    • paco128

      you need to get a life.you have obviously wasted this one. what a dumb as-

      June 13, 2012 at 10:50 am |
    • mandarax

      Paco, he'll possibly save you from a heart attack someday. And after you are rushed to the emergency room in a high tech ambulance and benefit from all the latest science, medicine, and technology you can wake up and say what the average ignoramus says: "It's a miracle! Thank god."

      June 13, 2012 at 11:09 am |
    • Rocky

      Nice and long writeup. Your belief in rationale and logic is good, but belief in God comes from personal experience. Hopefully someday you will see it when all hope and rationale is lost and a miracle happens.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:11 am |
    • *facepalm*

      @Rocky,

      If so many people claim to have personal experiences with a deity, why do all of their accounts about what that deity is, thinks, wants, desires, or does so utterly, totally, and completely different? Maybe because people are 'experiencing' something that isn't actually there? hmmmmmm...

      June 13, 2012 at 11:24 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Nice post Rocky. @ facepalm the reason people ascribe different desires to God is twofold. One, God is personal. He wants different things for and from each of us. Two, we don't listen well and follow instructions

      June 13, 2012 at 11:42 am |
    • Thinker

      I like number 2 there Bill. It has interesting implications when you think about the bible now doesn't it....

      June 13, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Thinker, It certainly does. That's why the best teachers ask us to get quite, open our minds and hearts, read the word. contemplate and meditate on what it means. Argue with God, wrestle with Him. Use your mind, not what some one tells you but use your own God given gift of discernment and the truth will be revealed. Make it personal. I believe this is much more productive for me than blind acceptance of dogma although I have come to understand some doctrine better by this process.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:59 am |
    • Reality

      @Colin

      You're NOTHING but a SECOND-RATE trying hard COPY PASTE!

      June 13, 2012 at 12:10 pm |
  12. yannaes

    The greater the doubt, the stronger my belief.

    June 13, 2012 at 10:34 am |
    • Huebert

      That's dumb.

      June 13, 2012 at 10:40 am |
    • Trumpy

      You realize that is so irrational it hurts, right?

      By that logic, any religion you doubt even more, you should believe in to a greater degree. Do you doubt Zeus? The stronger your belief in him should be!

      June 13, 2012 at 10:42 am |
    • PumpNDump

      So, you admit you're a cretin. Good to know.

      June 13, 2012 at 10:50 am |
    • Sumo

      I can only imagine how strong your belief in Santa Claus must be!

      June 13, 2012 at 10:58 am |
  13. MyTake

    Refreshing ...

    June 13, 2012 at 10:34 am |
  14. PumpNDump

    Newsflash: Intelligent, mature adults don't believe in myths and fables, like "god", "jesus", the easter bunny, santa claus, etc.

    June 13, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • yannaes

      But, we will believe in you. Right?

      June 13, 2012 at 10:35 am |
  15. ME II

    Prosperity Gospel: God want's you to have the best candy bar, but you must pay the preacher in order to get it.

    June 13, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • ME II

      sorry misposted

      June 13, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • Shadowflash1522

      hahaha I like it!

      June 13, 2012 at 10:43 am |
    • paco128

      lets listen to you. you're so smart and have such a promising future

      June 13, 2012 at 10:51 am |
  16. TexanSwagger86

    Atheist – "Great news! Maybe within a hundred years people won't be blowing themselves up for an eternity with virgins!"
    Christian – "Our country is going to hell in a hand basket."

    June 13, 2012 at 10:32 am |
  17. Nick Furry

    Neither atheists or christians understand god...athiest forever argue that there is no eternal superhero in the sky waiting to strike us down...which is correct but youre not making an argument against God/Source/Spirit, youre making a case against superheros...and christians are making an argument for a superhero which is incorrect but youre halway there because you believe that there is some source of energy bigger than what we can see. Listen everyone can we actually discuss God/Source/Spirit instead of the existance of a comic book Superhero then will we find wisdom.

    June 13, 2012 at 10:31 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      And your qualifications to make such a promise are what, exactly?

      June 13, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • PumpNDump

      Take your medication, cretin.

      June 13, 2012 at 10:34 am |
    • Nick Furry

      What promise??? All I said is that if we stop debating the reality of Superheros (Trust me Superman aint coming to save the world tomorrow) and truly debate God/Source/Spirit then we could learn something. These trivial debates hasnt gotten us as humans to far wouldnt you agree?

      June 13, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • Madtown

      I agree that these questions are not answer-able. No one knows.

      June 13, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • PumpNDump

      There is nothing to debate or discuss. It's a myth, you Id1ot.

      June 13, 2012 at 10:43 am |
    • Trumpy

      Oh, well, if Nick Furry gets it and everyone else doesn't, clearly his interpretation must be the right one...

      Go start yet another religious sect if you have "truth" to preach. We'll add it to the pile of interpretations by others who equally thought themselves just as right as you do...

      June 13, 2012 at 10:43 am |
    • Nick Furry

      Its funny because I never metioned the word "truth". Atheists like to make things up just as much as the people they call stupid. It's up to each to have their own experience I just gave my opinionno need to get so defensive its not like I want to harm you

      June 13, 2012 at 10:56 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Nick, you said:"Listen everyone can we actually discuss God/Source/Spirit instead of the existance of a comic book Superhero then will we find wisdom."

      That surely sounds like some sort of promise to me. What evidence do you have for this claim? How will you know 'wisdom' when you 'find it'?

      June 13, 2012 at 11:08 am |
    • Trumpy

      "Atheists like to make things up just as much as the people they call stupid."

      Ahhh, like that part where you claimed atheists like to argue god as an eternal superhero? I never said "superhero."

      Mr. Pot, I'd like you to meet Mr. Kettle...

      June 13, 2012 at 11:08 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      I've found that posts containing the phrases "Listen everyone", "wake up, people" or "Come on, people" usually usually contain drivel.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:10 am |
    • Nick Furry

      All the posts trying to disprove that there is someone out there with mythical powers fighting 'evil' and rewarding good sounds like a superhero to me which I would agree with atheist is a MYTH and the part about finding wisdom if we can stop attacking each other and creating so much anymosity we can better understand and gain wisdom about each other and the universe around us. If you think this fighting Christians vs. Atheist will open our eyes and make us better then look back on how long this debate has been going on and tell me have we really made much progress

      June 13, 2012 at 11:16 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      What makes you imagine that "progress" is possible or even a worthy goal? How in the world do you imagine someone who doesn't believe in an supernatural being or force is going to be convinced there is one? And why would you dream an atheist has any interest in changing the mind of a believer?

      June 13, 2012 at 11:29 am |
    • Nick Furry

      Because progression is necessary for life. Each and everyday you wakeup its progression towards something, whether that be the next day, the next advancement, or even death. You are always progressing.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:34 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Try to figure out what the topic is, Nick. You were talking about making progress in discussing religion and belief, not in making progress personally. Now, answer the question.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:37 am |
    • Trumpy

      Ahhhh, so when you hear something and decide to interpret it in terms the people never used, that's valid. But when I dared use a word you never used, it's part and parcel of all the "making things up" that atheists do?

      Your interpretation is one among millions. I'm glad for you though that you've convinced yourself of it.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:37 am |
    • Nick Furry

      @Tom

      You were the one who asked me about progression. I am aware of the topic and by default the shift in the belief that there is a go is in fact progression. Its up to you to determine where that is taking us but it is none the less progression

      June 13, 2012 at 11:41 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      "If you think this fighting Christians vs. Atheist will open our eyes and make us better then look back on how long this debate has been going on and tell me have we really made much progress"

      I'm pasting your own words, Nick, because you seem to have no clue what you mean or what you have said.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:44 am |
    • Nick Furry

      Youre right I apologize they never said superhero and I shouldve never used the word if they didnt. Either way I think we can both agree there isnt a guy or physical being or whatever you want to call it in the clouds that judges all and posses powers a lot like a superhero, and thats my word I'm not saying its theirs.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:45 am |
    • Nick Furry

      @Tom

      You asked about how progression tied into a debate about religion and asked if its a worthy goal and so on I merely answered the question. Thats all I was saying

      June 13, 2012 at 11:48 am |
    • Nick Furry

      @Tom

      As far as strictly religious progression the Protestant church is the evolution of the Catholic. PROGRESSION. My point was that progression is in escapable and its always a worthy goal, you can look at your own life for example. Btw I hope youre not getting mad I'm actually enjoying the dialouge youre really smart. Whatever you do youre already great or will be great.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:55 am |
  18. richunix

    Directed at CNN: Blah!

    June 13, 2012 at 10:30 am |
    • LinCA

      @richunix

      You said, "test" and, "Directed at CNN: Blah!"

      It looks like you may be having issues getting your posts to show. Here is some info that may help.

      CNN uses WordPress blogs for their opinion pieces, and they use automated censoring that looks for words, or fragments of words, that are considered offensive. If your post doesn't show up, it most likely had a forbidden word in it.

      Repeat posts, even those that were previously censored and not displayed, will show a message stating that you posted it before.

      The following words or word fragments will get your post censored (list is incomplete):
      arse
      bastard
      bitch
      cock
      coon
      cum
      cunt
      douche
      effing
      fag
      ftw
      fuck
      homo
      horny
      jackass
      jap
      jism
      kinky
      kooch
      nipple
      orgy
      pis
      porn
      poo
      prick
      rape
      sex
      shit
      slut
      snatch
      spic
      tit
      twat
      vag
      whore
      wtf

      To circumvent the filters you can break up the words by putting an extra character in, like: consti.tution (breaking the oh so naughty "tit").

      June 13, 2012 at 10:48 am |
    • TiredODaCrap

      Lin, How can that be true if you are able to post that list and CNN allows it to show? Sounds like they are a little inconsistent in what they let through. Even if you are just trying to prove a point, or help out others, they are still allowing the words on the censored list to be seen....

      June 13, 2012 at 11:08 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Lin has da mad html skillz which permits them to circu/mvent the word filter.
      Word.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:11 am |
    • LinCA

      @TiredODaCrap

      You said, "Lin, How can that be true if you are able to post that list and CNN allows it to show?"

      I'm in cahoots with the dark lord. I have special privileges. It cost me my soul, but it was worth it.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:15 am |
    • Thinker

      There are characters you can use that do not show up on the boards. By using them you can get around the robo-censor because it scans the post as code not as text.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:59 am |
    • Real Deal

      TiredODaCrap,

      Right-click on this page and go to "View Page Source" - look for LinCA's post and you will see how she does it. For me, it's easier and faster to just do the . , ' – / thang. Hers does look a lot nicer though.

      June 13, 2012 at 12:47 pm |
  19. richunix

    test

    June 13, 2012 at 10:28 am |
  20. Shadowflash1522

    Religions of the World, As Explained By Candy Bars
    (caution: humor ahead)

    Atheism: I don't need a candy bar. It's a waste of money anyway.

    Agnosticism: I can't buy a candy bar without more data!

    Christianity: My candy bar is better than yours because it says so on the wrapper.

    Judaism: My candy bar is older than yours.

    Primal: B1tch please.

    Islam: My candy bar is better than yours because we've slain all the infidel candy bars.

    Hinduism: BUY ALL THE CANDY BARS!

    Buddhism: There is no candy bar.

    Paganism: I grow my own candy bars out of magic and soybeans.

    Jehovah's Witness: There aren't enough candy bars to go around. Better buy one of ours before they run out.

    In honor of recent stories:
    Prosperity Gospel: My candy bar is bigger, richer, stronger, nicer, and better-looking that yours. It's also fifty times more expensive.

    Feel free to add your own!

    June 13, 2012 at 10:27 am |
    • richunix

      Love it!

      June 13, 2012 at 10:31 am |
    • ME II

      "Atheism: I don't need a candy bar. It's a waste of money anyway."

      "Agnosticism: I can't buy a candy bar without more data!"

      Honestly, these don't fit the analogy. But perhaps...

      Atheism: I don't believe a perfect candy bar exists.
      Agnosticism: I don't think we know what a perfect candy bar even is.

      June 13, 2012 at 10:36 am |
    • sam stone

      Rastafarianism: MMMMM....can-dy

      June 13, 2012 at 10:39 am |
    • AtheismIsCrap

      Atheism: I don't need a candy bar. It's a waste of money anyway. We prefer CRAP, every piece of it.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:02 am |
    • Huebert

      Hedonism – More candy bars!!!

      Satanism – Fcuk candy bars. I want vegetables.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:13 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      Jesus: Here, have mine.

      June 13, 2012 at 11:45 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.