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Why you should leave religion off your resume
A new study hints that religion and resumes don't always mix well.
July 2nd, 2014
09:24 AM ET

Why you should leave religion off your resume

By Sara Grossman, CNN

(CNN) – If you’re applying for a new job, it may be best to leave religion off your resume, according to a new study.

Job applicants who mentioned any form of faith affiliation on their resumes were 26% less likely to be contacted by employers than candidates who didn't, according to the study conducted by sociologists at the University of Connecticut.

Muslim, pagan and atheist job applicants were the least likely to get callbacks from potential employers.

“People have a fear of the unknown,” said Michael Wallace, a co-author of the study and a sociology professor at the University of Connecticut. The study “implies that when people don't know much about a religion, they have an instinctive fear of that group.”

Jewish applicants received the least discrimination of all religious applicants, with evangelicals not far behind.

The researchers sent out 3,200 nearly identical resumes to 800 employers around two major cities in the South, changing only a reference to participation in a religious student group while in college, including affiliations to evangelical Christianity, Islam and Judaism. The study does not name the cities.

A control group of resumes featured no reference to any religion.

The researchers also included a fake religion, called “Wallonism,” to measure the degree to which people discriminate against a completely unfamiliar faith. The fact that employers discriminated against “Wallonians” confirmed this suspicion, Wallace said.

The nonreligious resumes received responses about 18% of the time. By contrast, less than 11% of Muslims heard back from employers, followed by 12% of atheists and about 13% of “Wallonians,” Catholics and pagans.

Evangelicals heard back just under 16% of the time, while Jews heard back about 16.5% of the time.

The study showed that employers in the South the country’s most religious region by many measures prefer applicants who are not public about their religious affiliations, according to the University of Connecticut researchers.

“While religion is central to Southern life and Southerners more openly display their religious beliefs than citizens in other parts of the country, they also embrace the secular notion that there is a proper time and place for religious expression,” the authors wrote.

“Thus, even in the deep South, most employers draw the line against overt expressions of religious belief in the workplace.”

Religion in the United States has become “compartmentalized,” Wallace said. It is perfectly acceptable to be religious, he said, but Americans prefer that expression be secluded to certain domains.

“Social institutions are where you have a great diversity of people,” Wallace said. The worry that religious people might try to push their beliefs on other people is the biggest reservation of employers, he added.

The negative consequences of open religiosity did not seem to apply to Jews, however.

Although Jewish applicants received slightly less feedback from employers than applicants who made no mention of religion, this discrepancy was not enough to be statistically significant, Wallace said.

The researchers cited a number of theories as to why this phenomenon might be, especially since Jews make up a tiny portion of the Southern population.

For one, Jews have integrated well in the region and are not as residentially or occupationally segregated as they are in other parts of the country, Wallace said.

Also, evangelicals who make up the largest religious group in the South have a close affinity to Jews, even more so than to Catholics, and may feel more connected to members of this religious group, according to Wallace.

“Jews, and especially the Jewish state of Israel, feature prominently in evangelical Christian theology; in fact evangelicals express stronger support for Israel than any other ethnic or religious group except Jews themselves,” the researchers wrote.

Rachel Kranson, an assistant professor of religion at the University of Pittsburgh, said that part of this phenomenon might be a race and class issue, rather than a religious one, as the vast majority of Jews are white and middle class.

“People's religious identities do not exist in a vacuum, and intersect with categories of race and class,” she wrote in an e-mail. “Employers' preference for Jews may also indicate a preference for white workers from well-off backgrounds.”

The conclusions of this research largely mirrored those of a study performed last year in New England by the same team of University of Connecticut sociologists.

While sociologists found job discrimination in New England, it was not nearly as pronounced as in the South, except against Muslim applicants, according to the study.

That study found that resumes that mentioned religious affiliations received 19% fewer responses from employers than the nonreligious control group.

Muslims saw the worst of the discrimination, in both the North and South, according to the studies.

Muslims received 32% fewer e-mails and 48% fewer phone calls than job candidates who didn’t mention religion on their resume, according to the study. In the South, they received receiving 38% fewer e-mails and 54% fewer phone calls.

“This suggests, ironically, that religious discrimination in hiring is most prevalent in regions of the country where religion is most passionately practiced,” the authors wrote.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Business • Christianity • Discrimination • Economy • Islam • Judaism • Muslim • Prejudice • Work

soundoff (831 Responses)
  1. Ian's Rushtache

    kermit4jc says:
    July 10, 2014 at 1:00 pm
    lot of babble you got there….just cause the process is not mentioned does nOT mean it could not have happened..thats very weak logic
    ___________________________

    Kinda like claiming Noah gathered animals from every continent.

    September 3, 2014 at 11:17 am |
  2. 19covenant19

    Great MIRACLES have been discovered in the GOSPEL (=Matthew & Mark & Luke & John),
    it will change the World forever.

    http://www.19covenant19.com
    BIBLICAL EXCELLENT MIRACLES -3-

    July 27, 2014 at 6:51 am |
  3. monica7c

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DU9MbXueRFg&w=640&h=390]

    July 12, 2014 at 10:00 am |
    • igaftr

      don't waste you time with this spam. They are only trying to generate hits on youtube.

      July 12, 2014 at 10:09 am |
      • TruthPrevails1

        I'm surprised they haven't completely blocked this person.

        July 12, 2014 at 10:31 am |
  4. monica7c

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DU9MbXueRFg&w=1280&h=720]

    July 12, 2014 at 9:59 am |
  5. Salero21

    JAJAJA... oops... pardon me please... I meant to say again... HAHAHA and more HAHAHA. Extremely hypocritical and Compulsive lying atheists are sending me Spam mail from CNN and WordPress.

    July 11, 2014 at 11:03 am |
  6. awanderingscot

    "JUSTbecause DNA is very similar "
    "Not very similar...exactly the same. Most of the genes are exactly the same, and we can even see the one mutation that changed everything for humans, when we went from 48 chromosomes to 46."

    – whomever made this statement doesn't have a clue what they are talking about! there are many more differences.

    July 10, 2014 at 4:29 pm |
    • LaBella

      I'm intrigued. Please illustrate how.

      July 10, 2014 at 4:33 pm |
    • igaftr

      scot

      What are you talking about?
      Bonobo's and chimpanzees share 99.6% of our DNA.
      That leaves only .4% difference.
      That is to say 99.6 % is EXACTLY the same.Once again showing you have no idea what YOU are talking about.

      July 12, 2014 at 9:53 am |
    • TruthPrevails1

      You say it is wrong but yet (as always) fail to provide substantiating facts to back you...care to do this without reverting back to your bible??

      July 12, 2014 at 10:34 am |
  7. Keith

    It isn't the fact that you are religious that I will not hire you, it is that you are so religious that you want me to consider that fact in the hiring process. If you are so committed to being an Atheist that you need me to know it perhaps you are just a little too obsessed with your position. I am not interested in who your imaginary friends are, nor do I care that you consider yourself superior to anyone that has them.

    July 10, 2014 at 5:04 am |
  8. Reality

    Only for the new members of this blog:

    Another of the many reasons your religion should never be put on a resume:

    “John Hick, a noted British philosopher of religion, estimates that 95 percent of the people of the world owe their religious affiliation to an accident (the randomness) of birth. The faith of the vast majority of believers depends upon where they were born and when. Those born in Saudi Arabia will almost certainly be Moslems, and those born and raised in India will for the most part be Hindus. Nevertheless, the religion of millions of people can sometimes change abruptly in the face of major political and social upheavals. In the middle of the sixth century ce, virtually all the people of the Near East and Northern Africa, including Turkey, Syria, Iraq, and Egypt were Christian. By the end of the following century, the people in these lands were largely Moslem, as a result of the militant spread of Islam.

    The Situation Today
    Barring military conquest, conversion to a faith other than that of one’s birth is rare. Some Jews, Moslems, and Hindus do convert to Christianity, but not often. Similarly, it is not common for Christians to become Moslems or Jews. Most people are satisfied that their own faith is the true one or at least good enough to satisfy their religious and emotional needs. Had St. Augustine or St. Thomas Aquinas been born in Mecca at the start of the present century, the chances are that they would not have been Christians but loyal followers of the prophet Mohammed. “ J. Somerville

    It is very disturbing that religious narrow- mindedness, intolerance, violence and hatred continues unabated due to randomness of birth. Maybe, just maybe if this fact would be published on the first page of every newspaper every day, that we would finally realize the significant stupidity of all religions.

    July 10, 2014 at 12:19 am |
    • saneandreasonable

      That is your opinion. Opinions, like body parts, stink in many instances. Why do you care so much that some one believes some thing you don't?

      July 27, 2014 at 3:47 pm |
      • perineal

        when people are led by their religion to vote against the materiel interests of other people THEN I publicly counter their religious nonsense.

        There are atheists who have been so injured by religious people that they criticize all public expression of religion. I understand that while viewing it as counter productive. It is plain anti-social to tell someone their baby is ugly no matter how true that may be.

        With respect to hiring: I have found most *loudly* religious people to put less effort into their work product, God loves them so they don't need much in the way of admiration from their work peers.

        September 4, 2014 at 11:11 am |
  9. hal 9001

    It's only thirteen weeks until World Rabies Awareness Day! It's never too soon to have your pet vaccinated against all dangerous viruses such as Rabies, Salero and Kermit4jc. Be kind to your pet!

    July 9, 2014 at 7:09 pm |
    • kermit4jc

      thanks for your concern...I already gotten mypets taken care of a few months ago, we always keep up to date on all vaccinations

      July 9, 2014 at 7:34 pm |
      • Woody

        I guess prayer doesn't work at keeping animals free from the rabies virus (one of your god's nastier creations). When prayer once again fails, there's always science to fall back on.

        July 10, 2014 at 2:53 pm |
  10. austin929

    You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’h 39But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. 40And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. 41If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. 42Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.

    Love for Enemies

    43“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbori and hate your enemy.’ 44But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

    July 8, 2014 at 6:42 pm |
    • austin929

      1 Peter 3:9 ►
      Parallel Verses
      New International Version
      Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.

      Romans 12:19 ►

      Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," says the Lord.

      July 8, 2014 at 6:45 pm |
  11. bostontola

    The argument against evolution that we are missing transitional forms is like arguing that Marco Polo didn't venture to China because we don't have the exact route, or Lewis and Clark didn't reach the Pacific because the details of their relationship with Sacajawea aren't all known.

    The only 'errors' found in Darwin's Theory are that it is incomplete. There is much evidence, including transitional form fossils, genetics, geological evidence, chemical evidence, etc. It all supports evolution of species. Not any objective evidence refutes evolution of species. As more evidence rolls in every day, new details and more modes of evolution are found, not less. Actual evolution is complex and has many modes. These will continue to be discovered. The record of objective evidence has been in only 1 direction, species evolve, sometimes into new species if the conditions are right.

    The anti-evolution crowd never provides any objective evidence for their claim that evolution is false, or for their speculated alternatives. They throw unsubstantiated hypotheses up against tested and validated science. This is a standard tactic of defense lawyers. It works, jurys get confused as they don't differentiate evidence from hypothesis. This tactic has been shrewdly picked up by some religious leaders to mislead their flock.

    Being skeptical is good. Scientists are skeptical of new results published. But to blindly follow suit of people with an agenda and argue unsubstantiated hypothesis as equal to tested and verified theory because it is incomplete is not skepticism, it is a failure to be able to weigh evidence.

    July 8, 2014 at 3:53 pm |
    • kudlak

      Yup! Denying evolution due to "missing links" is like denying the Lewis and Clark expedition because they didn't leave permanent footprints for every single step that they took.

      July 8, 2014 at 6:07 pm |
      • austin929

        really? lewis and clark and objective evidence. vs. objective evidence from intertransitional forms?

        July 8, 2014 at 6:43 pm |
        • kudlak

          austin929
          If you watch an old film movie that happens to have a few frames ruined in spots throughout the playback do you imagine that the story takes off in wild directions in those few missing seconds? You can similarly line up fossils, but you would have us believe that weird divergent creatures could have just popped up anywhere in-between the samples we have? That's just preposterous...

          July 9, 2014 at 2:25 pm |
      • kermit4jc

        SURELY with SO many animals having had existed in the past one would find SOME tranitional forms..but NONE are found...ZERO!

        July 9, 2014 at 2:00 am |
        • observer

          kermit4jc,

          Part ape-like and part human-like and you are SURE they couldn't be "transitional"

          lol. lol.

          July 9, 2014 at 2:05 am |
        • kermit4jc

          they have NOT been priven to BE part ape and part man

          July 9, 2014 at 2:14 am |
        • G to the T

          I tell you a secret kermit – they're ALL transitional fossils.

          July 9, 2014 at 9:51 am |
        • kermit4jc

          butnone has been proven to be transiational between common ancestor of man, to the humans we have today

          July 9, 2014 at 6:39 pm |
        • Doris

          Nonsense, kermie. The fact that you use the term "missing link" shows how sorely misinformed (and probably mislead) you are on the subject. As G to the T said, but if you want to learn a little about it, start with these prominent examples of transitional fossils:

          Archaeopteryx
          Australopithecus afarensis
          Pakicetids, Ambulocetus
          Tiktaalik
          Amphistium
          Runcaria

          July 9, 2014 at 10:07 am |
        • idiotusmaximus

          ZERO is the sum of kermies mental abilities...that's why the bible and what it says means so much to him.

          July 10, 2014 at 9:40 am |
        • kermit4jc

          Doris..NO comment to YOU except for this....I did NOT bring up the "missing link" term I was nOT using the term missing link..one of the ATHEISTS in the blog did this..I was ONLY responding to their use of the word

          July 10, 2014 at 12:53 pm |
        • kermit4jc

          btw I see you bought into the deception of the Archaeopteryx ...do youbelieve this is the transition form from reptile to bird?

          July 10, 2014 at 12:54 pm |
        • igaftr

          kermit
          No one is looking for any "missing link" that is extremely outdated.
          All fossils are transitional because evolution is continuously happening.

          The proof you are descendant of apes is in your DNA.
          We ARE apes. ( h0m0 sapiens literally means wise ape.)

          July 9, 2014 at 10:21 am |
        • kermit4jc

          oie..JUSTbecause DNA is very similar and close does NOT make us have common ancesior with apes...correlation does not always prove things

          July 9, 2014 at 6:43 pm |
        • kudlak

          kermit4jc
          Every fossil ever found represents a tranitional form.

          You're looking for something like a crocoduck, I assume, or maybe a mermaid, or pegasus skeleton?

          July 9, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
        • kermit4jc

          WHERE are the fossils of the common ancestors? WHERE is the fossil (s) of the common ancestor of man and apes?

          July 9, 2014 at 6:58 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          kermit,
          Australopithecus sediba is one of many examples. You seem to be under the impression that evolution says that one day there was a chimpanzee and the next a human. No common descent means that each line evolved largely separately over a long time but millions of years ago had a common ancestor.

          July 9, 2014 at 7:04 pm |
        • kermit4jc

          not at all...apparently YOU are not reading my posts! I still keep referring to the transitional forms! MY beef is..WHERE is the common ancestor???? BTW according to evolutionists....humans did not come from apes but from common ancestor) I think you may know that, IM just saying IM aware of that

          July 9, 2014 at 7:33 pm |
        • igaftr

          kermit
          "JUSTbecause DNA is very similar "

          Not very similar...exactly the same. Most of the genes are exactly the same, and we can even see the one mutation that changed everything for humans, when we went from 48 chromosomes to 46.

          Trying to water down reality will not work. Your DNA proves beyond doubt you are descendant from apes, with apes and monkeys having a common ancestor.

          The genome is quite complex and extensive, and in it, we can see your history.

          July 10, 2014 at 10:30 am |
        • kermit4jc

          I think you need to study onthat beter..it is nOT exactly same....DNA is NOT 100% same in ever way with the apes and humans

          July 10, 2014 at 12:59 pm |
        • igaftr

          kermit
          99.6% of Chimpanzees and Bonobo's DNA is exactly the same as humans. Only .4% is different.
          They are our closest living relatives.

          July 12, 2014 at 10:07 am |
        • MidwestKen

          kermit4jc,
          First, there are plenty of transitional fossils just visit any Natural History Museum.

          Second, the Nakalipithecus and Ouranopithecus fossils are likely to be the most recent known common ancestors between humans and chimps (and also gorillas).

          July 12, 2014 at 11:43 am |
      • kermit4jc

        these missing links are missing..there are none..and scientists are desperately trying to show o Creaiotn, o God by hanging on the deception that these "missing links" exist!

        July 9, 2014 at 2:01 am |
        • Doris

          See above, kermie. The only thing I see missing here is what should be between your ears.

          July 9, 2014 at 10:08 am |
        • Science Works

          hey kermit you missed the links that redoza mentioned about the AiG and the ICR ?

          July 9, 2014 at 11:14 am |
        • Science Works

          Oops damn thumbs redzoa

          July 9, 2014 at 11:17 am |
        • Science Works

          Hey kermit

          This is a sample of the AiG – ICR's old stuff ?

          Scripture and Geologic Discovery by Douglas E Cox.

          Comedy Gold kermit .

          July 9, 2014 at 11:33 am |
        • kermit4jc

          Ihave not used that in years....I don't refer to those...sorry..you are assuming...my info comes from elswhere

          July 9, 2014 at 6:44 pm |
        • Science Works

          Hey kermit for the kids – not some ideology .
          Please check it out thanks.

          Climate Science Students Bill of Rights
          ALL KIDS DESERVE THE BEST CLIMATE SCIENCE EDUCATION AVAILABLE.

          http://ncse.com/taking-action/climate-bill-rights

          July 10, 2014 at 3:02 pm |
        • Science Works

          Ihave not used that in years..

          Good to know that kermit.wonder if topher has ?

          July 19, 2014 at 6:58 pm |
        • bostontola

          kermit,
          It's one thing to say that evolution is not completely driven by natural causes so the theory is incomplete, it's another to deny physical evidence. There are many clear transitional forms in the fossil record. The dating on those forms (established by physical chemistry) establishes the order and transitions. An example is the transition from primitive reptiles to dinosaurs, to birds. There are many transitional forms showing the gradual evolution of feathers for warmth and display, into flightworthy form.

          There are living transitional forms we can directly look at today. Did land animals evolve from aquatic animals? Some amphibians today start life as fully aquatic forms with gills and fins. They then change form (with their same DNA), grow legs and lungs to live on land. Other animals start in the water with gills and change those gills into wings and fly.

          July 9, 2014 at 12:31 pm |
        • kermit4jc

          thatsa theory that has not been proven.....

          July 9, 2014 at 6:45 pm |
        • bostontola

          kermit,

          To deny transitional forms is like denying that other planets have satellites. You can keep saying it, but we can directly observe them just like we can directly observe transitional forms.

          Evolution is a fact. Life forms have progeny with mutations. Now that we can quickly sequence the genome, we have measured the mutation rate accurately. Humans have an average of 60 mutations at birth. Selection acts on those mutations, that is a fact. Dogs, sheep, pigs, goats, cows, cats, chickens, horses, apple trees, pear trees, che.rry trees, orange trees, almond trees, walnut trees, fig trees, barley, rice, wheat, lentils, peanuts, corn, gra.pes, blueberries, strawberries, eggplant, squash, tomatoes, carrots, radishes, broccoli, cauliflower, etc. are a small fraction of the plants and animals that were radically changed by selection on those mutations that have been measured. It's a fact.

          Science hasn't proven that the only selection forces are natural. It has shown that there are natural selection forces, but not that they are exclusive. You can argue that there are supernatural selection forces put on the mutations to create new form. It is not reasonable to deny evolution of species.

          July 9, 2014 at 12:39 pm |
        • kermit4jc

          thetranistional forms have NOT been observed in humans and apes! again similarity does not make it true! ithas NOT been proven....there IS no fosisil of the common ancestor

          July 9, 2014 at 6:46 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Bostontola,
          I agree with your postion on most things and many of the details, but one item makes me wonder. This bit about gills into wings is new to me. Is there a source for that?

          P.s. kermit4jc is obviously just disregarding all evidence that disagrees with him.

          July 9, 2014 at 12:48 pm |
        • bostontola

          Ken,
          I first learned of this from the book by Sean Carrol, "Endless Forms Most Beautiful". He is an Evo Devo researcher. They study how DNA operates during development. It sheds amazing light on evolution. The genes that form gills early in development are later orchestrated slightly differently to make wings in the next form. If you look up evolution of insect wings you will find more. What I find more interesting is that the same genes contribute to gills and wings in an individual. Once that is true, evolution of wings doesn't seem as mysterious. This is true of other "transitional" forms as well.

          July 9, 2014 at 1:03 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Bostontola,
          Ah, "insect wings [from] gill-like appendages" that makes more sense. I was picturing bird wings, which seemed unlikly.

          July 9, 2014 at 1:21 pm |
        • bostontola

          Ken,
          Sorry for the confusion.

          July 9, 2014 at 1:29 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          Bostontola,
          My mistake. Thanks for the info.

          July 9, 2014 at 1:42 pm |
        • believerfred

          kermit4jc
          Just as you are rejecting the evidence supporting evolution theory the anti theists reject the evidence of purpose in creation. The Bible is silent as to the process God uses to create the physical world we experience yet express in the process of evolution of man out of a carnal state of existence and into an eternal state. We cannot reject evolution because of our belief in God as that is without merit and anti theists cannot reject God based on scientism as that is without merit.

          July 10, 2014 at 11:24 am |
        • kermit4jc

          lot of babble you got there....just cause the process is not mentioned does nOT mean it could not have happened..thats very weak logic

          July 10, 2014 at 1:00 pm |
        • bostontola

          fred,
          You make some very good points. I am an atheist, not an anti-theist, so I assume your comment was not applicable to atheists. The atheists I know don't reject evidence. I am waiting to see evidence of supernatural purpose. I see purpose all around me, but all the evidence I have says that those purposes are naturally derived. When a Paramecium swims up a glucose gradient, it has a purpose, to feed. I am very open to any objective evidence of purpose coming from beyond what we call nature, but I haven't gotten any.

          July 10, 2014 at 11:43 am |
        • believerfred

          bostontola
          Abraham, Moses, Jesus for example had purpose outside of natural. Before my conversion experience my purpose was limited to the known physical. When I asked Jesus into my life my purpose was to do the will of God. This is outside of myself and given that the object is outside of the physical my purpose must be outside of the physical i.e. supernatural. This transformation of purpose from carnal to a love of God happens hundreds of millions of times a year. These experiences are objectively observable and consistent. The result is as predictable as any other natural law. A real transformation is a rebirth that opens a window into the kingdom of God and the things of God that sees a purpose onto God.
          Evidenced by the words of Moses in 1440 BC Abraham's sons Isaac and Ishmael would be great nations and out of Isaac would come the Christ. Two thousand years ago Christ came from the line of Abraham as did the great Nations Jewish and Muslim. In 1440 BC God said these two nations will struggle with each other to the end of time. Those in Christ are born of the Spirit. Here we are in 2014 as all remains as stated. This purpose of God is clear.
          Like the Paramecium the people of God have followed the hope in a promise from the days of Abraham. That is observable evidence. Given the object is not natural the purpose is supernatural.

          July 10, 2014 at 1:48 pm |
        • believerfred

          kermit4jc
          "lot of babble you got there....just cause the process is not mentioned does nOT mean it could not have happened..thats very weak logic"
          =>The details of how God will fulfill the purpose of creation is very clear as that is the story of the Bible. You are arguing about the things of this world when you discuss missing links not the things of God or truth as expressed in the Word of God. The Bible discusses kinds,for example, and the classification system used in Genesis is not the complex taxonomy classification of today. Genesis was written in a form of classical Hebrew poetry which is not an acceptable form of scientific expression. Don't get me wrong, the Genesis story of creation has not be proven in error by science and remains the only Holy Book that gets it right (or does not get it wrong as far as we know).
          =>God said let it be and it was so is the operative process of Genesis. The beginning of life eternal is the Word of God not biopoiesis arising from some base element formed under pressure in a neutron star.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:12 pm |
        • bostontola

          fred,
          I respect your opinion on that. For me, the purpose of characters in the bible can be anything the reader projects onto that character.

          The feeling people get that they are spiritually moved to a purpose is a subjective experience. It is observable. That doesn't make it evidence of a supernatural cause as it could be a natural cause. We know that brain chemicals can cause powerful feelings and motivation of action, sometimes it gets out of control and bad things happen. The point is, what feels like supernatural has been shown in some cases to be completely physical.

          I'm not saying that proves anything, much less that your experience is different than you experience it to be. I'm saying I have no objective evidence.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:56 pm |
        • believerfred

          bostonola
          Who then did the 56 out of 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence refer when the appealed to the supreme Judge of the Word to bless their decision? And could that blessing have been in the form of the worlds superpower status as a nation of Christians ever since? Certainly that does not establish proof of God but these patterns are abundant.

          You are in the same boat as a Christian when it comes to proof for your belief. The fossil records, biology etc. show a pattern that we call evolution of man yet you have zero evidence to establish it was an accident without agency. If you reject agency without evidence you are at a minimum conflicted to demand evidence for agency from 90% of the word that accepts agency as causation on the same basis as you reject agency.

          Jesus said no proof will be given you except the sign of Jonah. If I give you proof other than that I would make Jesus a liar. Consider that the enemies of Israel in the ancient world did not fear the God of Abraham (probably did not know God) but feared Israel because God was with them. This goes to your line where we can observe the result of belief but that does not prove God. I do not know anymore than science can know how God works (i.e. existence may just be an expression of God and we only observe what appears physical in nature) nor can I define the substance of God.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:29 pm |
        • bostontola

          fred,
          I don't have proof of my beliefs, if I did they would be things I know vs. things i believe.

          I don't ask for proof. There is currently no proof either way. I ask for objective evidence. There is a lot of objective evidence of a natural universe (not proof). There is no objective evidence that there is any supernatural in the universe. Therefore I believe in a natural universe. I could be wrong, but with lots of evidence for natural, and zero objective evidence for supernatural it is a reasonable conclusion.

          July 10, 2014 at 6:44 pm |
        • believerfred

          bostonola
          You do know that something exists that is not currently known and that it extends well beyond our ability to comprehend at the present. Just how do you know that?

          July 10, 2014 at 7:10 pm |
        • bostontola

          fred,
          Because there are known phenomena we can't describe yet. Their effects have been observed (e.g. dark matter).

          July 10, 2014 at 7:22 pm |
        • believerfred

          bostontola
          I was driving towards 90% of the world that senses there is something more to existence than the observable natural. This same sense is what drove Neanderthal to bury important things with their dead.
          We are more aware of how little we know and the scope and power of even dark matter confirms it as to the external boundaries while introspection reveals lack of boundary as to time and space. Only God can take all of that in and create it.

          July 10, 2014 at 8:44 pm |
        • bostontola

          Fred,
          Our senses are notoriously unreliable. There are many things we think we sense that are wrong.

          July 10, 2014 at 8:59 pm |
      • kudlak

        austin929
        If you watch an old film movie that happens to have a few frames ruined in spots throughout the playback do you imagine that the story takes off in wild directions in those few missing seconds? You can similarly line up fossils, but you would have us believe that weird divergent creatures could have just popped up anywhere in-between the samples we have? That's just preposterous.

        July 9, 2014 at 2:24 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      "The argument against evolution that we are missing transitional forms is like arguing that Marco Polo didn't venture to China because we don't have the exact route, or Lewis and Clark didn't reach the Pacific because the details of their relationship with Sacajawea aren't all known."
      ----------------------------
      It is precisely like arguing that Marco Polo didn't venture to China because we can't find his fossilized poo with noodles in it, or that Lewis and Clark didn't reach the Pacific because we can't find the remains of the original Fort Clatsop.

      July 10, 2014 at 4:37 pm |
  12. kermit4jc

    NO evidence whatsoever for macro evolution.....NO tranistional forms available..period..uyour argument has no merit

    July 8, 2014 at 2:15 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      your ignorance is truly astounding ...

      July 8, 2014 at 2:18 pm |
    • redzoa

      Positive evidence for macroevolution: the progressive order of the fossil record; transitional forms including but not limited to tiktaalik, archeopteryx, etc, which bear traits bridging allegedly specially-created kinds; phylogenetic analyses of extant and extinct forms which corroborate the progressive order of the fossil record; molecular vestiges of common ancestry, e.g. our defunct human gene for egg yolk protein; anatomical vestiges of historical evolutionary contingency, e.g. the recurrent laryngeal nerve, male nip-ples; Etc, etc.

      Negative evidence for macroevolution: No fossils observed in the wrong place, e.g. no humans alongside dinosaurs, no rabbits in the pre-Cambrian; No observations of true chimeras; No observations of special creation of organisms; etc, etc.

      Earlier, kermit mentioned something along the lines of "just because we don't believe [evolution] doesn't mean we're ignorant." This statement is more or less true; however, statements like the one above certainly do demonstrate a clear ignorance. But more, they demonstrate the arrogance which accompanies a general scientific ignorance when coupled to a vain belief that a preferred and wholly unsupported belief in magic provides sufficient "credentials" to discuss topics with which they have no education or experience.

      "Usually, even a non-Christian knows something about the earth, the heavens, and the other elements of this world, about the motion and orbit of the stars and even their size and relative positions, about the predictable eclipses of the sun and moon, the cycles of the years and the seasons, about the kinds of animals, shrubs, stones, and so forth, and this knowledge he hold to as being certain from reason and experience. Now, it is a disgraceful and dangerous thing for an infidel to hear a Christian, presumably giving the meaning of Holy Scripture, talking nonsense on these topics; and we should take all means to prevent such an embarrassing situation, in which people show up vast ignorance in a Christian and laugh it to scorn. The shame is not so much that an ignorant individual is derided, but that people outside the household of faith think our sacred writers held such opinions, and, to the great loss of those for whose salvation we toil, the writers of our Scripture are criticized and rejected as unlearned men. If they find a Christian mistaken in a field which they themselves know well and hear him maintaining his foolish opinions about our books, how are they going to believe those books in matters concerning the resurrection of the dead, the hope of eternal life, and the kingdom of heaven, when they think their pages are full of falsehoods and on facts which they themselves have learnt from experience and the light of reason? Reckless and incompetent expounders of Holy Scripture bring untold trouble and sorrow on their wiser brethren when they are caught in one of their mischievous false opinions and are taken to task by those who are not bound by the authority of our sacred books. For then, to defend their utterly foolish and obviously untrue statements, they will try to call upon Holy Scripture for proof and even recite from memory many passages which they think support their position, although they understand neither what they say nor the things about which they make assertion." – St. Augustine

      July 8, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
      • kermit4jc

        NOT at all..first of all..its NOT proven that those you mentioed ARE in FACTtransitional!in fact..there are problems with those fossils being called as "transitional..plus it is interesting...do you believe in the Cambrian explosion? you know what it is?

        July 8, 2014 at 2:51 pm |
        • observer

          kermit4jc,

          Yes, God may have created completely different species that were very much like man and very much like apes and NEVER mentioned in the Bible.

          July 8, 2014 at 2:56 pm |
        • kermit4jc

          Nope..no evidence whatsoever

          July 9, 2014 at 1:49 am |
        • redzoa

          The fossils bear traits that bridge the vertebrate classes as well as the commonly understood notion of biblical "kinds"; that is, tiktaalik bears both fish and tetrapod features and archeopteryx bears both reptilian and bird features. The only source of alleged "problems" comes from ID/creationists and it should be restated that phylogenetic analyses of both extant and extinct forms corroborates these transitions.

          You may want to resist the standard creationist talking points regarding the Cambrian Explosion. Based on your prior comments, I'm reasonably confident that I'm more familiar with the topic than you are and scurrying off to AIG and ICR will not legitimately supplement your demonstrated previously ignorance.

          Evidence of your scientific ignorance and lack of training is present in your use of the words "proven" and "believe." "Proof" is available only in formal logic and mathematics; it is not the evidentiary standard for the physical sciences. I do not "believe" in the Cambrian Explosion; the physical evidence indicates a relatively rapid expansion of forms over the course of tens of millions of years. But to pre-empt your response and contrary to the standard creationist talking points, the Cambrian Explosion did not transpire "quickly" but the term "explosion" is relative to the context of geologic time. Furthermore, molecular and fossil evidence does provide pre-cursor forms and such rapid evolution has been observed at the expected taxonomic levels (i.e. speciation), e.g. the Pod Mrcaru lizards, Cichlid radiations in African lakes, etc.

          I would note that you failed to remotely respond to any of the other supporting evidence for macroevolution. Feel free to explain our defunct human gene for egg-yolk protein or the progressive order of the fossil record. Alternatively, you could be the first ID/creationist to offer some positive supporting physical evidence for your position rather than continuing the losing strategy of parroting well-refuted arguments of incredulity based in personal ignorance . . .

          July 8, 2014 at 3:10 pm |
        • observer

          kermit4jc,

          We have PHYSICAL PROOF that part-man part-apes existed.

          We have ZERO PHYSICAL PROOF of the Garden of Eden, Adam, Eve, and Jesus.

          July 9, 2014 at 1:59 am |
        • kermit4jc

          nooo..you do NOT have proof they are part ape part man....its a deception and the scientists are merely trying to make it fit in their mold what it should be....rather than the other way around....

          July 9, 2014 at 2:11 am |
        • observer

          God had no trouble designing unique animals. He made elephants, tigers, giraffes, turtles, etc.

          Then when he came to his greatest creation, he apparently ran out of ideas and created a man to be extremely like apes and the other animal fossils we have found. Not much for originality by then.

          July 9, 2014 at 2:15 am |
        • kermit4jc

          My God you are so shallow....they are similar in some ways..sure..but humans are TOTALLY unique! do gorillas have abtract thoughts? are they self aware? etc etc....just cause they LOOK similar does nOT mean that's where it ends..SO many things that humans are unique from apes....Ill bet you really think "The Planet of the Apes" must be true! Apes forming religions like humans do..etc etc..come on..get real..youre getting desperate here....

          July 9, 2014 at 2:18 am |
        • In Santa We Trust

          kermit, Did you read anything that redzoa wrote? btw Apes are self-aware – I'm surprised that someone in your line of work is not aware of that.

          July 9, 2014 at 10:07 am |
        • kermit4jc

          not in same sense we are aware of ourselves...again think of being in the abstract and all....

          July 9, 2014 at 6:42 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          In what ways are they different and please cite your sources.

          July 9, 2014 at 6:58 pm |
        • igaftr

          kermit
          "do gorillas have abtract thoughts? are they self aware? "

          Yes and yes, acccording to the studies that have occurred and the ones that are currently going on.
          Why are you getting all of your info from 1970 and before?

          July 9, 2014 at 10:24 am |
        • observer

          July 9, 2014 at 2:15 am |

          kermit4jc

          "do gorillas have abtract thoughts? are they self aware?"

          Yes and yes.

          You really BLEW those questions.

          Starting to do RESEARCH would help you a lot.

          July 9, 2014 at 6:45 pm |
        • kermit4jc

          NOT In the same sense as US! get all the info ok? thanks don't misrepresent me

          July 9, 2014 at 7:03 pm |
        • observer

          kermit4jc,

          You JUST MAKE UP THINGS as you go along because you don't bother to do any research so you KNOW what your are talking about.

          Read about the studies they have done on apes and then you won't be so painfully CLUELESS.

          July 9, 2014 at 7:13 pm |
        • kermit4jc

          stop with false accusation..I do not make things up....I study this too..I READ things s well.....I have already mentioned several in the past Lee Strobel's "Case for a Creator" I also have read from Michael Behe, JP Moreland, and many others mentioned in Lee;s books (including the secular books that have been cited in his book) BTW not all scientists agree with you...thus I am still in the right....

          July 9, 2014 at 7:38 pm |
        • observer

          kermit4jc,

          You make things up like claiming that you know MILLIONS of gays are wrong to say they've always been that way or claiming that 2 MILLION abortions were BECAUSE of convenience.

          Since you didn't research it, here's what wiki says:

          According to the definition stated earlier in this section, if an individual can process, identify, store information (memory), and recognize differences, they are self-aware. The chimpanzees, dolphins, and magpies have all demonstrated these factors.

          Ooops.

          July 9, 2014 at 7:47 pm |
        • kermit4jc

          OOPS

          July 10, 2014 at 12:48 pm |
        • kermit4jc

          hmm...something screwy with the posts..anyhow...you seem to lazy to look things up yourself...I made up NOTHING..this is stuff I get from reading! I can get you the links to stats of what people actually say..wiki doesnot really provide that....I don't have to frigging know the mind of gays to use logic that being born gay does not work...in other word.....science again has NOT..I repeat NOT conclusively said one IS born gay! THATS what IM going on....many people IGNORE this and say that gays ARE born that way so as to seem tolerant...and everyone falls into that game

          July 10, 2014 at 12:52 pm |
        • LaBella

          Science cannot conclusively say why one is born hetero, either.
          I would like the link to where it is stated conclusively that 2 million women a year get abortions out of convenience. This seems a little high.

          July 10, 2014 at 12:59 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      I am yet to hear an evolutionary biologist claim that they accept Darwin's Theory of Evolution because:

      1. They had an experience one day and now feel "born again" after Charles came into their lives.

      2. Evolution is written about in a 2,000 year old book of late Bronze Age and Greco-Roman Jewish mythology.

      3. It makes them moral and good.

      4. "Well, how else could it have happened."

      I guess we rational people just hold ourselves to a higher standard than the sky-fairy believers.

      – Colin

      July 8, 2014 at 2:55 pm |
  13. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    Fairies wear boots and you gotta believe me
    yeah I saw it, I saw it, I tell you no lies
    Yeah Fairies wear boots and you gotta believe me
    I saw it, I saw it with my own two eyes, well all right now!

    July 8, 2014 at 12:58 pm |
    • thesamyaza

      the only fey that were boots are the cat sidhe,

      have at the vile cur!

      July 9, 2014 at 7:24 pm |
  14. Dyslexic doG

    Are we really arguing about dictionary definitions now? I'm amazed that Christians want to be so precise about words used when their magical bronze age book of fairy tales is so imprecise. That Christians can believe that a book so obviously factually and scientifically and logically flawed could be the word of an omnipotent god.

    mind boggling.

    July 8, 2014 at 12:55 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      LET's Religiosity Law #6 – If a bible verse furthers the cause, it is to be taken literally. If a bible verse is detrimental to the cause, it is either: taken out of context; is allegorical; refers to another verse somewhere else; is an ancient cultural anomaly; is a translation or copyist's error; means something other than what it actually says; Is a mystery of god or not discernible by humans; or is just plain magic.

      July 8, 2014 at 1:01 pm |
    • kevinite

      That's because those definitions can actually apply:

      Full Definition of TRUTH (Merriam Webster)

      1
      a archaic : fidelity, constancy
      b : sincerity in action, character, and utterance
      2
      a (1) : the state of being the case : fact (2) : the body of real things, events, and facts : actuality (3) often capitalized : a transcendent fundamental or spiritual reality
      b : a judgment, proposition, or idea that is true or accepted as true
      c : the body of true statements and propositions
      3
      a : the property (as of a statement) of being in accord with fact or reality
      b chiefly British : true 2
      c : fidelity to an original or to a standard
      4
      capitalized Christian Science : god
      — in truth
      : in accordance with fact : actually

      Definition of truth in English: (Oxford American English)
      truth
      Syllabification: truth
      Pronunciation: /tro͞oTH /
      NOUN (plural truths /tro͞oT͟Hz, tro͞oTHs/)

      1The quality or state of being true:
      he had to accept the truth of her accusation

      1.1 (also the truth) That which is true or in accordance with fact or reality:
      tell me the truth
      she found out the truth about him

      1.2A fact or belief that is accepted as true:
      the emergence of scientific truths

      July 8, 2014 at 1:03 pm |
      • Reality

        Some truths:

        Jesus 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.

        July 8, 2014 at 1:21 pm |
        • perineal

          It is extremely unlikely that there was a town at Nazareth at the time of Jesus, at least not a Jewish one (only a cemetary).
          Additionally the only descriptions of Nazareth do not mesh with where the existing Nazareth is (no cliff).

          Other than that your statements are compatible with what historical records there are, which however isn't the same as being true.

          September 4, 2014 at 11:26 am |
    • zhilla1980wasp

      yeah i was debating the finer points of accepted terminology during a defined debate.

      dala wanted to use the international DALA dictionary.

      lmfao sorry i couldn't help it i'm bored at work so i was just sitting here poking dala with a stick so i could watch him chase his tail.

      July 8, 2014 at 1:19 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        the wasp has a sting.

        July 8, 2014 at 1:25 pm |
      • Dalahäst

        I used the first definition of "faith" that appeared after I Googled "Faith Definition".

        What is wrong with that?

        It is not a debate when you write your own rules and moderate it yourself in the setting of an anonymous opinion blog. You must be joking?

        July 8, 2014 at 2:01 pm |
  15. zhilla1980wasp

    WAHHHHHHHHHHH! I BROKE MY DALA!

    (points while sucking thumb) fix it.

    July 8, 2014 at 12:42 pm |
    • Dalahäst

      WAHHHHHHHHHHH! I AM ZHILLA!

      (starts playing a game and makes up the rules as he goes) I win!

      July 8, 2014 at 2:16 pm |
      • igaftr

        Considering the fact that you lie and misrepresent the arguments and statements of others, and even misrepresent your own statements, you have little to chastise others for.

        July 9, 2014 at 10:28 am |
  16. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    As opposed to internet blog Christians... who are the epitome of scientific knowledge, compassion and Jesusyness.

    July 8, 2014 at 12:02 pm |
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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.