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Bucking previous trends, survey finds growth of the religiously unaffiliated slowing
January 10th, 2013
01:30 PM ET

Bucking previous trends, survey finds growth of the religiously unaffiliated slowing

By Dan Merica, CNN
[twitter-follow screen_name='DanMericaCNN']

Washington (CNN) – After years of marked growth, the size of Americans who identify with no religion slowed in 2012, according to a study released Thursday.

Since 2008, the percentage of Americans who identify as religious "nones" has grown from 14.6% to 17.8% in 2012, according to the Gallup survey. That number, which grew nearly one percentage point every year from 2008 to 2011, grew only 0.3% last year – from 17.5% in 2011 to 17.8% in 2012 – making it the smallest increase over the past five years.

This study contrasts with headlines from previous studies on religious “nones,” including a 2012 study by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life that found the group was the fastest growing "religious" group in America and that one in five Americans now identify with no religion.

“Although this ‘rise of the nones’ has increased dramatically over recent decades, the rate of increase slowed last year, suggesting the possibility that there may be a leveling off in this measure in the years ahead,” reports the Gallup study, which is made up of more than 350,000 interviews.

Frank Newport, editor-in-chief of Gallup, says these results suggest “that religion may be maintaining itself or even increasing in the years ahead.”

“Our current ability to look at it over five years with these big surveys suggests the possibility that the growth [of the nones] may not be inexorable,” Newport says.

CNN Belief Blog: Christmas exposes atheist divide on dealing with religion

In his book, “God is Alive and Well: The Future of Religion in America,” Newport argues that a number of factors, including baby boomers reaching senior ages, migration to more religious states, recognition of health and well being of religion and an increase in a Hispanic population, are all reasons that “we are going to continue to have a quite religious nation going forward.”

Atheist and humanist activists disagree and pushed back against the Gallup study.

“The truth is, it doesn't really matter whether one of these surveys – even a big one like Gallup – shows the number leveling off a bit this past year,” Greg Epstein, humanist chaplain at Harvard University, says. “First of all, the numbers for young Americans are still dramatically higher, and secondly, it is beyond dispute now that the "nones" are one of the largest demographic groups in the United States, and we're going to stay that way for a long, long time.”

The Gallup study also found that 27% of Americans age 18 to 29 identified as religious nones, making the age group the largest subgroup in the study. The finding tracks with other studies on religious nones, many of which have found the growth among the religiously unaffiliated has been most notable among people who are 18 to 29 years old.

“There's no slowing here at the Secular Student Alliance. We're up to 394 campus groups from 310 a year ago,” Jesse Galef, communications director at the organization, says in response to the survey. “You can see the religious future of America just by looking at the demographics: Young Americans (18-29) are almost three times as likely to be unaffiliated with religion than senior citizens are.”

In particular, Galef points out, the Secular Student Alliance has experienced growth in ages below 18, an age group that Gallup did not survey. In the last year, says Galef, the number of Secular Student Alliance affiliates at high schools doubled to 60 campuses.

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News of strong growth among nones had long been heralded by their community.

As study after study began to report that religious nones in America were growing, many atheist, agnostic and humanist activists began to stress the need for these relative non-believers to come together and turn their numbers into political and social influence. Though some leaders split on what wielding that influence would look like, the size of religious nones became the impetus for many leaders to call for more recognition.

In response to the Gallup study, those calls continued.

“The real question now is when are our historically large numbers going to start turning into more votes and influence,” Epstein says. “The nones can become a steady and inspiring powerhouse in American life if we focus on what we do believe in.”

And even though the Gallup study found a relative leveling off of growth among the nones, David Silverman, the president of America Atheists, says he finds the survey “not at all troubling.”

“This underscores what American Atheists has been saying for years - that every person in America knows more nonreligious people than they think they know,” Silverman says. “America has to get used to the fact that atheists are everywhere, you already know us, and we are a vibrant and growing portion of society.”

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Nones

soundoff (1,615 Responses)
  1. Reason Wins

    It is always slower in election years. Too much god talk tied into the family values party.

    January 11, 2013 at 10:43 am |
  2. taxedmore

    If religion was more about God and people and less about religion it would be in a lot better shape. I went to a funeral this week and it was :
    religion – religion – religion -God- religion – religion – religion -and Oh yea, somebody died.

    January 11, 2013 at 10:40 am |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      Please explain the difference.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:43 am |
    • sam stone

      the only way that happens is if people realize that "god" is ENTIRELY PERSONAL. no need for churches, no need for supposedly sacred texts. make it up as you go along is the way that it is real to the individual

      January 11, 2013 at 10:59 am |
    • WhenCowsAttack

      Nothing offends me more than going to a funeral and having the pastor start trying to convert the attendees at the end- basically you have a captive audience, generally people from all walks of life, and IMO it is grossly inappropriate to preach to them. What makes him think they want/need to hear it? There is a time and a place for that. Such as, when they walk into your church for a Sunday sermon.

      It just seems so...arrogant. The last funeral I went to I quietly slipped out the back door as soon as the pastor started up with that crap.

      I swear, if my family has the audacity to give me a Christian funeral when I die I will rise back up from the grave and eat their brains 🙂 Have a party for me, and a few straight shots of Pendleton in my honor.

      January 11, 2013 at 11:16 am |
    • a reasonable atheist

      @When

      I couldn't agree more. My thesis adviser passed away a couple of years ago, and his funeral service was 99% proselytizing and 1% about him, the relationships he built, the people he helped, and his impressive lifetime of accomplishments. My colleagues and I (who all earned our PhDs under his tutelage and thought of him as a second father) were disgusted when the pastor actively minimized his life's work by working it into a context of it being minuscule compared god's glory or some similar BS to that effect.

      Fortunately, we adjourned to his house after the burial and spent the night sharing and reminiscing about how he had bettered our lives and taught us so much about not only science but also being decent to people and forming and maintaining relationships. We got to know his biological children that night and realized that he treated us the same way he treated them – as his family. We laughed and carried on sharing similar stories about how he steered their development and our professional development. That gathering much more represented what he stood for, how he brought people together, and what his legacy was. The earlier religious service was cold, impersonal, and ultimately offensive.

      January 15, 2013 at 4:53 pm |
  3. fsjunkie

    I was raised as a Pentacostal Christian. Today though, after 40 years of experience on this Earth and an education, I'm just keeping my mouth shut and being a good and moral person. Of course, my personal morality was learned as a result of my Christian upbringing. But there's a part of me that just can't figure out why it would have been left to man to overcome his "intelligent design" and sin. I will never be smart enough to answer that question, and you wouldn't catch me using the old "free will" empty comeback on somebody, knowing full well that NOTHING is free.

    January 11, 2013 at 10:36 am |
    • WhenCowsAttack

      I am curious as to why you add "Of course, my personal morality was a result of my Christian upbringing"

      I think that morals have evolved along with society- they are pretty much ingrained into us as a species. It is necessary to have morals in order to live peacefully amongst one another. Taught by parents, also at a young age regardless of religion. One does not need a religious upbringing to be moral. Sure, there are always those in our society without, and we tend to shun them (also natural).

      Do you think you would be completely amoral if you had no religion in your childhood? That is, quite simply, a fallacy.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:46 am |
    • fsjunkie

      I don't have a problem with acknowledging that the church was a positive influence in my life while I was growing up in the inner city...or acknowledging what my influences could have been without the church in my life.

      January 11, 2013 at 1:07 pm |
  4. Disliker-Of-Idiots

    Religion's time will be up soon. Once you educate people, educate them a lot, and teach critical thinking skills, religion dies. Time and the continued development of technology will kill religion for all but the most stupid among humanity.

    January 11, 2013 at 10:29 am |
    • Bill Deacon

      But education is declining in America. So what does that indicate?

      January 11, 2013 at 10:31 am |
    • Rick

      "But education is declining in America. So what does that indicate?"

      That Christians are trying to squash critical thinking so they can keep their followers in their cult. Christians make up 80% of Americans so your religion is to blame.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:33 am |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      Well some of the religious have an active campaign against science Bill, so what do you think it means?

      January 11, 2013 at 10:34 am |
    • It is Called

      To Bill
      Seperation of Church and State
      Courts have ruled can;t teach ID/creationism in public schools in US
      Nrw science standards (stem) created by 26 states for 2013
      Those are FACTS.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:42 am |
    • Origin of Life

      To Bill
      New science standards for 2013 created by 26 states (stem) Learning is a life long venture !

      Hypothesis Traces First Protocells Back to Emergence of Cell Membrane Bioenergetics
      Dec. 20, 2012 — A coherent pathway – which starts from no more than rocks, water and carbon dioxide and leads to the emergence of the strange bio-energetic properties of living cells – has been traced for the first time in a major hypothesis paper in Cell this week.
      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121220143530.htm

      Hypothesis Traces First Protocells Back to Emergence of Cell Membrane Bioenergetics
      Dec. 20, 2012 — A coherent pathway – which starts from no more than rocks, water and carbon dioxide and leads to the emergence of the strange bio-energetic properties of living cells – has been traced for the first time in a major hypothesis paper in Cell this week.
      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121220143530.htm

      January 11, 2013 at 10:49 am |
    • NDanger

      Religion appeals to the emotional side of humanity, not the rational side. I'm sure you know the quote from the John Lennon song, "God is a concept by which we measure our pain." There will always be some form of religious belief because there are times when logic and analysis can't sooth physical, emotional or psychological pain. In times of desperation, people need something to find a sense of purpose and hope.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:49 am |
    • Science

      Science Education

      Stephen Hawking: 'There is no heaven' – Under God – The ...
      http://www.washingtonpost.com/...god/.../stephen-hawking.../AF6...
      by Elizabeth Tenety – in 624 Google+ circles – More by Elizabeth Tenety
      May 16, 2011 – There is no heaven... that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark,” Hawking told the Guardian.

      Theoretical physicist and Nobel laureate Steven Weinberg suggests that in fact this is not much of a God at all. Weinberg notes that traditionally the word "God" has meant "an interested personality". But that is not what Hawking and Lederman mean. Their "god", he says, is really just "an abstract principle of order and harmony", a set of mathematical equations. Weinberg questions then why they use the word "god" at all. He makes the rather profound point that "if language is to be of any use to us, then we ought to try and preserve the meaning of words, and 'god' historically has not meant the laws of nature." The question of just what is "God" has taxed theologians for thousands of years; what Weinberg reminds us is to be wary of glib definitions.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:51 am |
    • Will S

      That's odd, I have a Ph.D. (sedimentologist with strengths in paleoecology, paleoclimate, and isotope geochemistry), am an active research scientist, and am quite intelligent by most measures. I understand evolution and the Big Bang theory (better than you, I warrant). I'm also a devout Catholic. I don't agree with every nuance of my faith (only zealots do that), but then I don't like every flavor of beer, either. Stereotypes and generalizations will only get you so far before you find out that they are, in fact, just that.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:52 am |
    • Economies and many key industrial processes are based

      Oil Gold Water

      OIL & GOLD around 200 million years after earth formed.

      Were Does All Earth's Gold Come From? NOT G-od
      Precious Metals the Result of Meteorite Bombardment, Rock Analysis Finds

      Sep. 9, 2011 — Ultra high precision analyses of some of the oldest rock samples on Earth by researchers at the University of Bristol provides clear evidence that the planet's accessible reserves of precious metals are the result of a bombardment of meteorites more than 200 million years after Earth was formed.

      Dr Willbold continued: "Our work shows that most of the precious metals on which our economies and many key industrial processes are based have been added to our planet by lucky coincidence when the Earth was hit by about 20 billion tonnes of asteroidal material."

      January 11, 2013 at 10:56 am |
    • WachetAuf

      Religion will cease to be the driving influence of humanity only when 400 millions years of evolution of the primitive parts of the human brain is removed. That will not happen over night. If humanity survives it will take at least another 400 million years of evolution to eliminate the fear which drives human beings. Jesus himself experimented. He invited us to be "born again" to a higher nature, to be tolerant. It has not worked. Only very, very, very few have ever understood and incorporated his message into their lives. It is ironic that those who call themselves "Christian" are those who are principally dedicated to intolerance. That is due principally to the role of the herd (organized religion) which abhors reason and distorts reality and Jesus' message. We sometimes hear the concept described as "group think" or "herd mentality".

      January 11, 2013 at 10:57 am |
    • Rynomite

      "But education is declining in America. So what does that indicate?"

      It indicates you don't understand statistics.

      Education in the U.S. is in RELATIVE decline not ABSOLUTE decline.

      So to make this very simple:

      Lets assume that in 2005 the U.S. school children averaged a score of 62 on a standardized test, and this ranked them #10 among all countries.

      So in 2013 the U.S. school children averaged a 64 on that exact same test, but now we were ranked #17 among all countries.

      The overall U.S. eductation system was still showing improvement, just not as much improvment as other areas in the world.

      and guess what? Those other countries passing us? They rank very high as SECULAR nations.

      January 11, 2013 at 11:00 am |
    • snowboarder

      Will S, i expect that your education has also resulted in your being less likely to condemn your neighbors who believe differently than yourself and keeps you from attempting to enforce your theology on the population at large.

      essentially, your education has likely blunted the effects of religion on your life.

      January 11, 2013 at 11:18 am |
    • Fossil Record

      Education is key Bill
      New
      244 million years ago, monsters ruled the seas where Nevada now sits
      http://cosmiclog.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/01/07/16396768-244-million-years-ago-monsters-ruled-the-seas-where-nevada-now-sits?lite
      Fact

      January 11, 2013 at 11:37 am |
  5. No Gods No Master

    Religion has no useful purpose in modern day society. Yet why do many still cling onto this relic belief system is beyond me.
    Perhaps the reason why many people are still religious is due to Pascal's Wager.

    If this so-called God is real and sends people to hell who merely did not believe in him, then he is not worth of being worshiped.

    The Problems of Evil and Epicurus riddle Why call him God? Are evidence that this God is not real

    January 11, 2013 at 10:28 am |
    • WachetAuf

      The reason is that the human brain is dominated by primitive survival instincts which have been the prime driving force for 400 million years. The higher reasoning powers have been evolving for only about 4 million years and have little ability to influence those stronger primitive instincts. The herd is one of the keys to survival. The bond which unites the herd has little to do with reason. The herd is kept together by the appeal to the lowest common denominator. The lowest common denominator is not defined by the one who asks questions. He who asks questions is usually ostracized or murdered. Fear, not reason, rules.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:45 am |
    • Newt Gingrich

      The only *proof* a rational person needs to understand that there is no "God" is the fact that no one can rationalize what "God" is.

      What is "God"?

      Nobody can answer this question!

      If you don't have a rational answer to this question, then by the basic principles of existence and logic, your "God" does not exist. How can it exist when you can't even come up with a rational argument for it to exist?

      In other words, you know absolutely nothing about your "God". And if you know nothing, then your "God" is just nothing. And nothing is the opposite of something. Hence, your "God" does not exist.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:49 am |
  6. justageek

    @Matthew – I admittiely am not all the acquainted with history but I have heard of how Hitler used a certain religion to help his cause when he was in prison trying to get on top and that it may have been just that from table talk. Guess we'll never know for sure.

    January 11, 2013 at 10:26 am |
  7. Nosy meddlers

    Why do people insist on attempting to "inspire" others to believe what they believe? No person of opposing opinion is EVER going to have some epiphany because you regurgitated someone else's words over and over again. If you want to be religious, atheist, spiritual, agnostic, WHATEVER, it's your business. Leave others to their own beliefs.

    January 11, 2013 at 10:26 am |
    • Manny

      Someone should have told that to Martin Luther King Jr.. Poor guy was under the impression that his words could actually affect people's bigotry with his words. Silly fool, right?

      January 11, 2013 at 10:35 am |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      People deserve respect, beliefs stand or fall on their own merits. And I find it ironic that you are telling others to mind their own business by acting like you are above it all. You aren't.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:42 am |
  8. onemorehere

    is one a lyer when one believe to be telling the truth? or only not yet informed or found the guiding light of Wisdom...that only God can provide to mankind? to fish for souls and to bring the good news that there is a God is the message to those who yet have not seen his presence and through faith they come to beleive and posible see the realization of what God is ...

    --Pete

    "Nothing you hear from so called atheists on these blogs is true."-–

    More lies from the xtians – 87!

    January 11, 2013 at 10:12 am | Report abuse |

    onemorehere

    some that with out self thought knowledge who called themselves athiest are really confused and truelly believe what they are saying even when wrong they believe to be telling the truth now that is not all atheist some are really cruel and mean to deceived others – those who are not stading in solid ground are those worth reaching out to- cause they need to know truth from false testimony...those who trully know God cannot depart from him but there are those who blindly fight their way away from him...evil is blind and can't see the presence of god– that was God's course for rebelion...only a pure soul can be reach by the creator now that is not that easy to keep so its only through faith and the acceptance of jesus sacrifice for the human race that is posible to find the way and acceptance required by God in his second agreement to menkind...jesus was the lamb who took all our sin so even with a blind soul one can find the way to the creator and at one time if any find themselves in the presence of the lord our God the reason we are here...

    January 11, 2013 at 10:23 am |
    • Smithsonian

      "some that with out self thought knowledge who called themselves athiest are really confused and truelly believe what they are saying even when wrong they believe to be telling the truth"

      The stories found in the Book of Genesis, Chapter 1-12, such as the flood story, the record is quite different: the time period under consideration is much more ancient. The factual bases of the stories are hidden from our view archaeologically. The stories remain a part of folk traditions and were included in the Bible to illustrate and explain theological ideas such as: Where did humans come from? If humans were created by God (who is perfect and good), how did evil among them come to be? If we are all related as children of God, why do we speak different languages? It must be remembered that the Bible is primarily a book of religion, a guide to faith. it was not a book of history, poetry, economics, or science. It contains all sorts of literary genre, which are used to teach about the relationship between God and mankind. Even biblical history is edited history: events were chosen to illustrate the central theme of the Bible. The Biblical writers did not pretend they were giving a complete history; instead they constantly refer us to other sources for full historical details, sources such as "The Annals of the Kings of Judah" (or Israel).

      It is therefore not possible to try to "prove" the Bible by means of checking its historical or scientific accuracy. The only "proof" to which it can be subjected is this: Does it correctly portray the God-human relationship? In the best analysis, the Bible is a religious book, not an historical document.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:30 am |
    • NOT MY CHAIR

      i am the confused one because i do not believe in magic? right....

      January 11, 2013 at 10:42 am |
    • snowboarder

      onemore, atheists are not evil or deceptive. they simply acknowledge the myriad of deities and religions created by men over history. all gods are assumed to be false unless otherwise proven.

      January 11, 2013 at 11:04 am |
    • WhenCowsAttack

      Are you calling me evil?

      January 11, 2013 at 11:18 am |
  9. Scott

    I'm one of the "nones", as in I choose not to affiliate with a specific religion, i.e., Baptist, Catholic, Methodist, Episcopalian, Church of Christ, Lutheran, etc., but this in no way means I don't Believe. I also have learned, no matter what, people cannot rationally discuss politics and/or religion. From what I've seen in the comments, a bunch of people living in glass houses have been throwing a heck of a lot of stones.

    January 11, 2013 at 10:22 am |
    • MyOwnSelf

      My personal observations, counter to yours, are that the more religious a person claims to be, the bigger the hypocrisy in their lives. I sometimes wonder how some of these folks just don't implode from the contradictions they deal with daily. This is separate from those throwing stones.

      I've truly come to understand the quote "I hold we're both atheists, I just believe in one less god than you. When you understand why you dismiss all other gods, you'll understand why I dismiss yours" and that if people rationally (ha ha) thought about that quote, really pondered it, it might shine some light into their lives.

      January 11, 2013 at 11:58 am |
  10. kd

    meh – polls.

    all I know is what I observe in my own life and that is that most religions and religious people I'm aware of (those that make their beliefs and actions public) are very radical. They're clamping down in their communities and getting very much in the political world. But there's no sense of a larger, friendlier community among them. It's all fire and brimstone now.

    When I was a kid, the community was as much, if not more, than the religious education. I loved the picnics, fairs, dances, card parties, holiday events – but they're now pretty much gone. The only event I know of is back in my hometown of St. Louis every St. Patrick's Day when the whole town turns out for a silly, clumsy parade and a few thousand crowd the local Catholic church for corned beef and cabbage meals and beers. The feeling of community there is great. Too rare anymore.

    January 11, 2013 at 10:20 am |
    • kd

      ...and the Las Vegas Nights. Those were always a blast and people from all over came, not just members of the church community.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:24 am |
    • Bob

      "When I was a kid, the community was as much, if not more, than the religious education. I loved the picnics, fairs, dances, card parties, holiday events – but they're now pretty much gone."

      It was replaced with TV, video games and cell phones.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:25 am |
    • kd

      too true, Bob

      January 11, 2013 at 10:29 am |
  11. Robert

    "Impeach God" ... LOL

    Yeah, who elected that guy?

    People accept God as an absolute ruler who can get away with drowning millions of people because "he works in mysterious ways." Why do we accept behavior from our deity that would never be appropriate for human beings, no matter how intriguing the aura of mystery they cultivate?

    January 11, 2013 at 10:14 am |
    • Robert

      God can't even uphold the moral standards of the average criminal, let alone the average human being.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:16 am |
    • Manny

      You'd think that no proud, patriotic, freedom-loving American would ever welcome the takeover of this country by an autocratic dictator, yet millions of Christians living in this country can't wait for King Jesus to wipe out all democracy. Simply amazing!

      January 11, 2013 at 10:23 am |
    • No Gods No Master

      God has committed more atrocities than the devil. Don't believe me? Read the bible.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:29 am |
    • justageek

      @NOT MY CHAIR – "please give me one theory or anything from religion that is remotely prove able"

      I cannot do that anymore than someone can prove we came from nothing in a big bang. If you believe in God[theory] you think we're were placed here by magic. If you believe in the big bang[theory] you believe everything came from nothing. Both equally puzzling to me.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:43 am |
  12. justageek

    @Bill in Bellingham – "We are not driven by an agenda, other than the truth."

    What is the truth?

    January 11, 2013 at 10:04 am |
    • NOT MY CHAIR

      that religion is not based on facts or truth its based in faith and countless times through out history, religious people have stopped science or all together turned the back on reality to preserve their faith.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:14 am |
    • justageek

      @NOT MY CHAIR – That's it? That's the truth? I thought there might have been more as in if there is no God there is this other thing because it is true. Not talking about the big bang where we came from nothing but some other truth that can be pointed to as fact and not theory.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:21 am |
    • Barbara

      The article also makes it clear that the vast majority of Americans still believe in God in some sense. The Bible says that the heavens delcare the glory of God. In my view, most people, wheather they are "religious" or not, are aware that there is Someone out there. Some call it "the God-shaped hole". It seems to me that if you can consider that there is the least possiblity that God exists, it behooves you to seriously consider the claims/evidence for him. It is also a good idea to as him to show himself to you, and then start paying attention. After all, the God I know is a gentleman. He invites you to know him, he does not require it.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:26 am |
    • NOT MY CHAIR

      you need to know the difference between fact and theory. here is a fact. we have a moon that orbits around our planet. here is a theory. because of the mass of the earth it create a force that extends beyond its physical form, this force is holding the moon in orbit. we call this the theory gravity... this did not happen because of a god. theories are used to describe a group of facts. so asking for facts and not theories is ridiculousness. please give me one theory or anything from religion that is remotely prove able.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:33 am |
    • NOT MY CHAIR

      evidence for god? i have never seen any reliable evidence for him. i do hear a lot of claims though. i can claim i can fly, but you wouldn't believe me until i showed evidence. why dont people use the same logic when discussing religion.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:35 am |
    • justageek

      @NOT MY CHAIR – "please give me one theory or anything from religion that is remotely prove able"

      I cannot do that anymore than someone can prove we came from nothing in a big bang. If you believe in God[theory] you think we're were placed here by magic. If you believe in the big bang[theory] you believe everything came from nothing. Both equally puzzling to me.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:43 am |
    • NOT MY CHAIR

      the big bang theory is not that everything thing came from nothing. please learn about these theories before talking about them. also its sad to me that we have adults running around this country believing in magic.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:52 am |
    • justageek

      @NOT MY CHAIR – I know the big bang doesn't explain as it but most folks use the big bang and don't talk about singularity or anything before it. I am curious to know where you think everything came from?

      January 11, 2013 at 11:01 am |
    • cksmith1

      Galileo: “The Earth is not the center of the universe. It orbits the sun not the other way around.”

      Religion: “Blasphemy!!! Heretic!!! Recant or die!!!”

      Galileo: “OK, I recant the facts for faith” (but not really.)

      justageek, is that fact enough for ya?

      January 11, 2013 at 11:13 am |
    • justageek

      @cksmith1 – "justageek, is that fact enough for ya?" – Umm...no.

      January 11, 2013 at 11:19 am |
    • cksmith1

      fact
      /fakt/
      Noun
      A thing that is indisputably the case.

      The Earth orbits the sun. Earth is round. Religion was told otherwise by the voice in its head and persecuted those with actual facts.

      If you can't see for yourself that this is a travesty to the truth (fact) then you have delusional tendencies that will fester and grow until you can no longer tell reality from fantasy. May already be too late for you.

      I'll keep you in my thoughts.

      January 11, 2013 at 11:35 am |
    • MyOwnSelf

      @Justageek to answer the question of where did everything come from – I don't have an answer, and neither do you. Saying god created it begs the questions "from where did god come? where does god live? from what did he create the universe?"

      In short, you have the same unanswered questions except you've parked them behind a magical invisible friend.

      January 11, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
  13. onemorehere

    why write some more when this guy below explained all for me...it sure saved me alot of time and effort ...

    best thought ananlogy so far...
    Pablo

    The pious have been praying for peace and goodwill for over 2000 years. How's that working out? So much for the power of prayer.

    January 10, 2013 at 6:10 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    Robert Brown

    Some say the stories in the bible are unbelievable and some are proven false by science. Specifically, the ones that really bother most folks are the creation and the flood. So, you can believe some force or deity can start the ball rolling, so to speak, but our understanding doesn’t line up with a literal 7 day creation? Ok, fair enough, what if the whole creation story is a parable or allegory? Some would say well that could be ok, except, the sun was created after plants in genesis. I have noticed that as well, but if you want to just find what you consider a problem then give up and quit, why bother questioning in the first place?

    Here are some things to consider on the plants appearing before the sun. First, is the obvious one “let there be light.” Next, and from there on, after each day in the story, it says,” and the evening and the morning were” and then whatever day it was. Finally, when plants first emerged it is suggested that the earth’s atmosphere was cloudy and foggy until the plants grew long enough to clear some of the CO2. So, if you look at it from an earthly perspective, while light could be perceived during the day and lesser light at night the sun moon and stars weren’t clearly visible until the atmosphere cleared.

    You know God communicated with several people in the bible using dreams and visions. Suppose he gave Moses a vision or dream about creation to write down, it would be like a slide show, the first frame darkness, then light, water, land, plants, the sun, moon, stars, fish, birds, animals, people. If you were sitting on earth watching it unfold in super-fast forward it could have appeared just like that.

    The key to creation if you can accept a power, force, or deity had some hand in it, is Genesis 1:1” In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” If you can then accept that what follows is a parable given to Moses by God, it would seem to me that it would be reasonable that it is a very simple story that a man who lived in ancient times could understand and accept. It follows at least to some degrees the steps of the development of life on earth, as we think they occurred. If you view chapter 1 in that context it could alleviate some of your objections to that part of the creation narrative.

    If you could accept the first chapter of genesis is a parable or allegory, or not, then let’s proceed to the Garden of Eden. Regardless of how you believe humans developed, at some point, you get to what we today understand as humans, a very distinct, intelligent, self-conscious, thoughtful, species when compared to all related species.

    If you view the garden of Eden and Adam and Eve as a parable about an example pair of the first humans to obtain awareness and their interaction with this creative force and their development of an understanding of right (righteousness, thought and behavior God approves of, thought and behavior that humans esteem) and wrong (sin, behavior God hates, or the human guilt complex if you like).

    In the parable we have this transition from being unaware or being just happy go lucky smart animals, to awareness, something, somehow, removed from the animal kingdom. So, regardless of how you feel that developed, it is presented in an instantaneous realization brought about by eating the fruit from the forbidden tree. The fruit and the tree represent this awareness or knowledge.

    Was the sin taking and eating from the tree, developing the awareness or knowledge, that first lie they told God, or the desire to know more, which could be akin to pride?

    A side note here ladies, if you look at it from this context, women developed superior intelligence first, then gave it to, or taught men.

    If you go along those lines of thought you have to deal with the serpent. Could this serpent introduced into the story be the desire for knowledge? Why would it, this desire, be considered a bad thing by the creator, innocence lost?

    “And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.”

    “And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.”

    As parents, do we not endeavor to protect the innocence of our children, and as children don’t we desire to be a grown up? It could be that the serpent is the desire or pride, a separation or a want to go in a direction contrary to the will of the creator, innocence lost.

    Some say the old testament God was just too mean and is not worthy of worship. Why would he create humans knowing they were going to rebel and then kill them wholesale? There are several examples in the bible, the most extreme is the flood.

    It is not believed because we do not see evidence of a worldwide flood and if there was one, the God who did it could not be a good God worthy of worship. Not only that, but the idea that humans and animals developed to some point then were all but eliminated from the earth just does not line up with what we think we know of the history of the earth, at least as far as timing.

    First, let’s look at what we do know, there are in modern times examples of huge catastrophic floods. There is evidence from ancient times of floods. Now, could Noah’s flood have been a local or regional flood? Could one family have built a boat similar to the dimensions recorded in the bible? Would a boat of this size be adequate to hold a family, their livestock, a collection of local wild animals, and all the food and water the group would need to survive for a long time? If you can accept that all this is possible, then the story, parable, or allegory also seems to be a reasonable possibility.

    Would a God who would destroy a bunch of extremely mean people and preserve some good ones still be unworthy of worship? If so, then what would be the lesson or message of such a parable? It seems very simple to me, God is demonstrating his intention to create, allow people the opportunity to choose good or bad, allow the ones who have chosen evil to change their minds, and then ultimately, eliminate evil and preserve good. What could possibly be wrong with that?

    January 11, 2013 at 9:56 am |
    • Science

      Science

      Stephen Hawking: 'There is no heaven' – Under God – The ...
      http://www.washingtonpost.com/...god/.../stephen-hawking.../AF6...
      by Elizabeth Tenety – in 624 Google+ circles – More by Elizabeth Tenety
      May 16, 2011 – There is no heaven... that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark,” Hawking told the Guardian.

      Theoretical physicist and Nobel laureate Steven Weinberg suggests that in fact this is not much of a God at all. Weinberg notes that traditionally the word "God" has meant "an interested personality". But that is not what Hawking and Lederman mean. Their "god", he says, is really just "an abstract principle of order and harmony", a set of mathematical equations. Weinberg questions then why they use the word "god" at all. He makes the rather profound point that "if language is to be of any use to us, then we ought to try and preserve the meaning of words, and 'god' historically has not meant the laws of nature." The question of just what is "God" has taxed theologians for thousands of years; what Weinberg reminds us is to be wary of glib definitions.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:00 am |
    • It is Called

      Seperation of Church and State.
      Also the courts have ruled can;t TEACH ID/creationism in public schools in US.
      New science standards (stem) created by 26 states for 2013.
      Lets not forget these facts.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:05 am |
    • caw

      When you have as many what ifs and ifs and general questions a your post has, then why aren't you asking yourself what if it's not real.

      Why should I have faith in something that is described in writings by men, that were then organized by more men and rewritten and translated by even more men.

      Here is my own IF. If there is a god, then where is he? To believe the bible, he used to show up all the times and speak to people. Not been any of that in the last two thousand years. If God were to give a TRUE Miracle (not a statistical anomaly) he could change a lot of opinions and end the constant wars that are carried out in HIS name.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:06 am |
    • Religion is Not Heathly for children or ANY living things

      I have a BIG problem with "having to accept" so many blatantly illogical and impossible claims such as the very claim that this so-called "god" communicated directly with ANYONE who says they "hear voices"!?? HMMM? does THAT REALLY sound likely to you? We have MANY people among us today that "hear voices"! Most of them are receiving proper mental therapy...

      January 11, 2013 at 10:08 am |
    • Jacob

      Science does not explain everything yet – so a smart man would not make statements in absolutes when the shining principle of his logic requires the measurement of absolutes, facts, and figures that are yet far from complete.

      In any statement, the best one can say is 'I believe'. To do otherwise is arrogance.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:19 am |
    • Origin of Life

      @onemorehere
      According to this statement below, your stuff hogwash

      Hypothesis Traces First Protocells Back to Emergence of Cell Membrane Bioenergetics
      Dec. 20, 2012 — A coherent pathway – which starts from no more than rocks, water and carbon dioxide and leads to the emergence of the strange bio-energetic properties of living cells – has been traced for the first time in a major hypothesis paper in Cell this week.
      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121220143530.htm

      January 11, 2013 at 10:20 am |
    • Will S

      Most Christians aren't fundamentalists, and therefore don't believe in a literal interpretation of Genesis. You need a smaller brush.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:57 am |
    • Robert Brown

      Caw,
      God is a spirit, he is invisible. God still speaks to people through his holy spirit. I did not ask myself those questions caw. The questions are there to provoke thought. I have been a believer for many years, whether those stories are literal or parable does not change my faith, because I have had personal experiences with God.

      The idea was to help those who have some faith in science and also believe there could be a God but are having trouble reconciling the two. I think it would be difficult to have your own personal experience with God without faith.

      By the way, thanks onemorehere for reposting that. God Bless.

      January 11, 2013 at 11:09 am |
  14. truth be told

    Nothing you hear from so called atheists on these blogs is true. It is a fact that it is not possible for an atheist to be anything but a liar.

    January 11, 2013 at 9:48 am |
    • Bill in Bellingham

      I am an atheist ... i do not lie. Your silly remark has no foundation. Its people like you who make atheists want to insult all Christians as intolerant liars who will do anything to promote their mythology.

      January 11, 2013 at 9:52 am |
    • Religion is Not Heathly for children or ANY living things

      Comming from an obvious BIGOT such as yourself, that really doesn't carry much weight...

      January 11, 2013 at 9:53 am |
    • COGowan

      You're just not really all that bright, are you?

      January 11, 2013 at 9:55 am |
    • Thoth

      The only fact surrounding your post is that you have made a baseless blanket statement about nearly 20% of Americans.

      January 11, 2013 at 9:57 am |
    • justageek

      Fail.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:06 am |
    • Stormy

      personally, i was never asked what my religious beliefs were. I'm pretty sure i'm an American citizen that just retired from the Air Force. I find it rather silly to post a bunch of guestimated stats and try to make it sound like the total was included when indeed it isn't even close. It's like calling a presidential election complete just by looking at the numbers from just one state. It doesn't work like that.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • Pete

      "Nothing you hear from so called atheists on these blogs is true."

      More lies from the xtians – 87!

      January 11, 2013 at 10:12 am |
    • onemorehere

      some that with out self thought knowledge who called themselves athiest are really confused and truelly believe what they are saying even when wrong they believe to be telling the truth now that is not all atheist some are really cruel and mean to deceived others - those who are not stading in solid ground are those worth reaching out to- cause they need to know truth from false testimony...those who trully know God cannot depart from him but there are those who blindly fight their way away from him...evil is blind and can't see the presence of god– that was God's course for rebelion...only a pure soul can be reach by the creator now that is not that easy to keep so its only through faith and the acceptance of jesus sacrifice for the human race that is posible to find the way and acceptance required by God in his second agreement to menkind...jesus was the lamb who took all our sin so even with a blind soul one can find the way to the creator and at one time if any find themselves in the presence fo the lord our God the reason we are here...

      January 11, 2013 at 10:16 am |
    • SB1790

      I think the same thing could be argued for a lot of major religions. Have you actually read the King James Bible? It's the basis for a huge chunk of Western Christianity. It's extremely hard to reconcile it with actual facts and logic. What is VERY easy to do is to glean versus from it to fit a specific stance on something. This is, of course, what has been done for centuries to advocate policies. It's not so much that the Bible is a blatant lie, but rather it has been used to severely distort the truth to fit special interests. My issue with major organized religions is that most of them tend to not be objective in their thinking.

      I asked a minister about faith once and he explained it to me as the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen. Which to me translated into wishful thinking and selective verses to support your specific belief. The very fact that we have so many sects of Christianity (and just so many religions in general) should bring to light that there is a no real consensus as to a universal interpretation of religious text. Then consider all of the books that were NOT included in most present day versions of the Bible and you'll see even more conflicting scripture.

      Just for a moment forget the argument of whether or not God exists. If people would actually follow the basic Ten Commandments, which make good sense if you want to keep a peaceful society, the world would be a much better place. However they do not and will not. Nearly all religions negate the 'Thou shalt not kill' commandment by invoking other versus that they use to justify killing other members of different sects, races or nationalities.

      Atheists, at least, are not being hypocritical by subscribing to something that contradicts itself over and over again. You can be an atheist and STILL be a morally outstanding, ethical person. God doesn't have to be in the mix, nor do you have to be affiliated with any particular religion. Morality and religion can be and are separate.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:34 am |
    • alphabatt1

      One must know the absolute truth to tell a lie about that truth.
      Science at least admits that nothing is totally "proof" but is theorized through observable evidence. Science is constantly
      revising it's findings in search of truth.
      Religion, on the other hand, seems to be absolutists' about a book written by bronze age nomads who has been edited, revised and translated for 3 thousand years. You would'nt know the truth from Shinola.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:52 am |
  15. jackieg

    Mr. Silverman needs to be aware that lack of religious affiliation does not automatically imply atheism. A person can believe in God, a Higher Power, a Creator etc. without pledging allegiance to a particular dogma.

    January 11, 2013 at 9:46 am |
    • Thinker...

      Oh I bet he is aware. He is just trying to apply the best possible spin for his organization, like anyone involved in lobbying and activism.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:32 am |
    • Jesus

      But when he does that, he creates a very easy "us vs. them" mentality, which really gets those religious people off.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:54 am |
  16. Jeb

    Like the lady in the allstate commercial with her French model boyfriend, people are beginning to realize that most of what they hear from atheists on the internet is not true.

    January 11, 2013 at 9:44 am |
    • Bill in Bellingham

      sad. nice try. every atheist I know is honest. We are not driven by an agenda, other than the truth.

      January 11, 2013 at 9:50 am |
    • kd

      such as? Why would an atheist lie on this (or any other) comment thread? That makes no sense.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:28 am |
    • SB1790

      So the converse of that rational is that every non-atheist is truthful? I think not. I think that if you were to have a group of 100 believers and 100 atheists and studied the number of incidents of lying, it would be about equal for both groups. Morality is something that is learned and a personal choice. You're implying that an atheist can not be a moral person, which is absolutely not true. And you're implying that a believer has to be a moral person, which is absolutely not true. The very fact that believers pray for forgiveness of sins points to the fact that believers also are capable of lying.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:43 am |
    • Jesus

      So if an atheist says the world is round, in your opinion, it MUST be flat, since the atheist said it was round & atheist are always lying... so you think the earth is flat?

      January 11, 2013 at 10:54 am |
    • cedar rapids

      'Like the lady in the allstate commercial with her French model boyfriend, people are beginning to realize that most of what they hear from atheists on the internet is not true.'

      Woman: But you will burn in hell for being gay
      Guy: Where did you hear that?
      Woman: In the bible
      Guy: And you believe it?
      Woman: yeah, they cant put anything in the bible that isnt true
      Guy: And where did you read that?
      Woman: In the bible.

      Woman: Oh here come my new saviour, i met him in the bible. He's the son of god.
      scruffy guy: er....bless you.

      January 11, 2013 at 11:59 am |
  17. cheeto101

    Hate to say it, but for all the rhetoric about religious people being "intolerant", I usually see the most hate and intolerance coming from non religious people who feel the need to post about how "stupid" someone elses beliefs are.

    Just goes to show that believer or not, seems like people like to get their kicks by putting other people down. And thats just sad.

    January 11, 2013 at 9:43 am |
    • Rynomite

      While there are some that do as you say, I think that a quantatative analysis of rude comments on this site's religion blog would reveal that the religious are every bit as guilty of making poor generalizations as the non-religious are.

      Look no further than this page with several comments generalizing that all atheists are liars or hateful. Such statements really have no place in a discussion about religion.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:03 am |
    • NOT MY CHAIR

      so if pointing out the hypocrisy and nonfactual points in religious text rude. what do you consider what religious people? hateful maybe? egotistical?

      January 11, 2013 at 10:07 am |
    • Religion is Not Heathly for children or ANY living things

      Atheists have little patience for self-righteous people who arrogantly spew obvious myth and legend composed of illogical nonsense. Atheists are more cconcerned with reality, facts and discovery of truth through science and critcal observation.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:16 am |
    • cheeto101

      @ Rynomite. I didn't say anything different, notice I said both are guilty. Both religious and non religious like to put each others beliefs down (at least on the internet, its funny just how much more civil people are in person, just goes to show what cowards people are when they don't have the safety of the internet protecting their precious beliefs)

      @Religion........
      So lack of 'patience" makes it ok for people to be intolerant of others beliefs? Hardly sounds like an "enlightened" view point to me. In fact, it seems ironically similar to the lack of patience shown by the religious towards the non religious.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:39 am |
    • .

      cheeto101 = Chad

      January 11, 2013 at 10:43 am |
    • NOT MY CHAIR

      @cheeto- if i was to say i believe that the lord of the rings was real you would think i am insane. you would try to explain to me that it is a make believe book written by a guy years ago. well thats how atheist view religious people

      January 11, 2013 at 10:48 am |
    • cheeto101

      @Chair

      If you actually believed the Lord of the Rings was true, then who am I to judge? You believing in that doesn't hurt me in anyway, shape or form. In fact, if I actually thought you were insane, i would be more likely to pity you then to put you down and make you feel bad about yourself.

      Either way, Im not going to try to make myself feel better by slamming your beliefs, which is what I see going on by both sides, and yet both sides seem to trumpet themselves as being more enlightened then the other when in reality, they are just 2 sides of the same coin. Petty and judgemental.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:53 am |
  18. more2bits

    The world will never know peace until every person is an atheist.

    January 11, 2013 at 9:43 am |
    • cheeto101

      Sadly, people will just find new things to fight about (heck most "religious" conflicts in history and present stem from other geopolitical factors). Humans will fight with each other over belief, resources, land etc. Removing organized religion would just remove a symptom of the problem, not provide a cure.

      January 11, 2013 at 9:46 am |
    • justageek

      Guessing you don't know who folks like Stalin and Hitler were?

      January 11, 2013 at 9:57 am |
    • NOT MY CHAIR

      world will never know peace, greed will always corrupt

      January 11, 2013 at 10:04 am |
    • Rynomite

      justageek –

      Hitler = Christian.
      Stalin = Raised Christian.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:06 am |
    • Matthew

      @justageek Yes, I'm well acquainted with history:

      "I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord.." -"Mein Kampf"

      January 11, 2013 at 10:17 am |
    • cheeto101

      @Rynomite

      Anyone who has done any sort of studying of Hitler or Stalin knows that faith was far from the minds of either of those men. To blame anything they did on their religious beliefs is to make a giant, uninformed logical leap that is completely not based in any sort of real study of either of those historical figures. Both Hitler, and Stalin, by all accounts, could be considered atheists as far as their policies went.

      The point still stands that the removal of religion from the world isn't going to solve all of the worlds ills.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:36 am |
    • Bob

      "Both Hitler, and Stalin, by all accounts, could be considered atheists as far as their policies went. "

      "My feelings as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter. It points me to the man who once in loneliness, surrounded only by a few followers, recognized these Jews for what they were and summoned men to fight against them and who, God's truth! was greatest not as a sufferer but as a fighter. In boundless love as a Christian and as a man I read through the passage which tells us how the Lord at last rose in His might and seized the scourge to drive out of the Temple the brood of vipers and adders. How terrific was His fight for the world against the Jewish poison. To-day, after two thousand years, with deepest emotion I recognize more profoundly than ever before in the fact that it was for this that He had to shed His blood upon the Cross. As a Christian I have no duty to allow myself to be cheated, but I have the duty to be a fighter for truth and justice.... And if there is anything which could demonstrate that we are acting rightly it is the distress that daily grows. For as a Christian I have also a duty to my own people.... When I go out in the morning and see these men standing in their queues and look into their pinched faces, then I believe I would be no Christian, but a very devil if I felt no pity for them, if I did not, as did our Lord two thousand years ago, turn against those by whom to-day this poor people is plundered and exploited."

      -Adolf Hitler, in his speech in Munich on 12 April 1922

      January 11, 2013 at 10:42 am |
    • cheeto101

      @Bob

      And yet William Donovan discovered massive amounts of evidence that pointed towards Hitler persecuting Christian churches in Germany and planned to reduce the number of Churches in Germans overall. Hitler was only interested in religion as much in that it would give him power. Using one quote to represent Hitler's entire view towards the christian church is grossly misrepresenting the historical facts.

      January 11, 2013 at 10:48 am |
    • cedar rapids

      'Using one quote to represent Hitler's entire view towards the christian church is grossly misrepresenting the historical facts.'

      oh well if you want then i can go find 20 or 30 more hitler religion quotes. will that be enough?
      how about the one where he claimed that by killing the jews he was doing god's will? or the one where he said that he isnt ashamed to say how he drops to his knees to pray and thank god that he born in the time he was?

      January 11, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
  19. wjmccartan

    That's because their are more scaredy pants then ever before.

    January 11, 2013 at 9:40 am |
  20. Mennoknight

    An yet the Church is growing world wide faster than any other time in history.

    January 11, 2013 at 9:36 am |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Mennoknight

      " An[sic] yet the Church is growing world wide faster than any other time in history "

      So is Islam.

      Peace...

      January 11, 2013 at 9:43 am |
    • MennoKnight

      therealpeace2all
      You are correct. And that only adds to my conclusion the the West in an anomaly where faith is in decline.
      And even in the West where faith is in decline, what faith is in decline? The old traditional state run churches. Personal choice faiths like being a born again Christianity and for that matter Islam are on the rise.
      For instance 75 years ago Evangelical churches where around 8% of the population in America where they are at about 28% now. So that is not only very strong numerical growth but a large proportional growth.

      What we are seeing in the West, Europe, North America, is that collapse of state run faiths. State run faiths are rarely true faiths.
      As a Mennonite my denomination has Always been against being State run.
      This is one of the reasons why I so strongly believe in separation of church and state. This is also why as an evangelical we need to be more careful with flexing our "political" muscle to much or we will in a sense become state churches.
      We have already see that to some degree now haven't we?

      January 11, 2013 at 10:46 am |
    • therealpeace2all

      @MennoKnight

      " As a Mennonite my denomination has Always been against being State run. "

      Good to hear.

      " This is one of the reasons why I so strongly believe in separation of church and state. "

      Very good to hear.

      " This is also why as an evangelical we need to be more careful with flexing our "political" muscle to much or we will in a sense become state churches. "

      Yes... I certainly would like to see the evangelicals dial it down a bit. Evangelism if taken to the extreme can lead to Theocratic rule such as in Iran, etc...
      The freedom to choose one's faith, those freedoms, those rights, among many others, would be taken away. "

      " We have already see that to some degree now haven't we? "

      Yes, and it seems to be on the upswing with the evangelicals.

      Peace...

      January 11, 2013 at 10:55 am |
    • MennoKnight

      therealpeace2all,
      Peace to you as well.

      January 11, 2013 at 11:10 am |
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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.