Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Religion and Public Life

The PEW Forum just published a study that is very interesting. If you want to know about religion ask a atheist or agnostic, not a religious person. They asked 32 questions about the bible, Christianity, other religions and constitutional principals in U.S. public life. Half of the respondents answered incorrectly. Most even got questions about their own faith wrong. The highest scoring were in order: atheists, agnostics, Jews and Mormons. Questions about the bible the Christian groups getting the most right were Mormons and the white evangelical protestants. Questions about world religions it was the atheists, agnostics and Jews who scored the best. It was found that there was widespread confusion about the line between teaching and preaching. 53% of protestants could not identify Martin Luther as the one who started the protestant reformation. 55% of catholics didn't know that the church teaches that the bread and wine at communion turns magically into the flesh and blood of Christ. And 43% of Jews didn't know that Maimonides was Jewish, one of the worlds most brilliant and renowned rabbis in history. I find this interesting. It sort of confirms my suspicions that most so called religious people don't really know anything about religion, especially their own. They basically regurgitate what ever is told to them by their clerics. Is this a lack of interest, or faith in what ever someone, particularly a cleric tells them or shear utter lack curiosity and the feeling that everyone has they want to be superior to someone. That makes others and especially atheists and agnostic targets. I hear all the time that atheists and agnostics don't know anything about religion, when the fact is they know more than the religious. Ironic isn't?
Skeptical DoDo

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