Friday, October 13, 2017

Oxford University Press announces the "Death of secularism"

The Oxford University Press published an article entitled The Death Of Secularism which declared:
Secularism is under threat 
From Turkey to the US, India to Russia, parts of Europe and the Middle East, secularism is being attacked from all sides: from the left, from the right, by liberal multiculturalists and illiberal totalitarians, abused by racists and xenophobes as a stick with which to beat minorities in diverse societies, subverted by religious fundamentalists planning its destruction.



Saturday, October 7, 2017

Atheist infighting, political polarization and the decline of global atheism



Is atheist infighting going to contribute to a decline of global atheism in the 21st century?

In 2017, the atheist activist Lee Moore indicated about American atheist organizations:
If you look at the major atheist groups right now, like the national groups, the ones that are doing the real activist work... They are not bringing in the kind of donations they used to. Most of them are starved for cash. They're downsizing left and right. Because people aren't just giving like they used to. And I talked to a lot of the major donors out there and they said, "Well, we're kind of tired of seeing the atheist community just fight amongst itself and not really get anything done. We'd rather not give money if we don't think it's going to go somewhere.
Atheist Dr. Gordon Stein wrote:
Atheism has long ceased to be a rare and oft-ignored philosophical outlook...It has transformed itself into an active political programme with clear objectives which, though they vary from state to state, unequivocally include the elimination of state religion, religious education, and the enshrinement of scientism (Gordon Stein, Encyclopedia of Politics and Religion, page 74.). 
There is a reactionary element to atheism, For example, the atheist ideology in Muslim countries is a reaction in part to Islam.  On the other hand, the atheists in a culture absorb various aspects of that culture.

In the  Western World,  right-wing, populist nationalism rising in Europe and the United States has increased the prevalence of the secular right within Western atheism. In addition, there is a backlash against feminism within atheism - especially after the Elevatorgate controversy which involved feminists disparaging Richard Dawkins. 

Historically, the atheist population has titled on the left side of the political spectrum.  For example, according to the University of Cambridge, historically, the "most notable spread of atheism was achieved through the success of the 1917 Russian Revolution, which brought the Marxist-Leninists to power." According to the Pew Forum, in the United States: "About two-thirds of atheists (69%) identify as Democrats (or lean in that direction), and a majority (56%) call themselves political liberals(compared with just one-in-ten who say they are conservatives)"

So what is the net affect of right-wing atheism rising within American atheism?

In June 2016, American Interest reported:
First of all, religious belief is still very powerful and widespread, and there is nothing inevitable about its decline. In fact, the proportion of people who say they believe in God actually ticked modestly upward, from 86 percent to 89 percent, since Gallup last asked the question in 2014.
We do live in a multivariable world so atheist infighting might be one of several variables that is causing the promulgation of atheism to be more challenging in the United States.

China and Europe are the two geographic regions where are atheists are the most prevalent. As alluded to above, in Europe right-wing nationalism is rising in reaction to Muslim immigration and anti-European Union sentiments. This is going to cause right-wing atheism to rise within European atheism. And since European atheism affects American atheism, it should cause right-wing atheism to rise within American atheism.

Now when you consider that China is experiencing an explosive growth of Christianity and atheists infighting within Western atheism will in all likelihood increase, the future of atheism looks very bleak.

In 2012, the W. Edwards Deming Institute published a report by the World Future Society which stated:
In 2100, however, the world will likely be only 9% unaffiliated — more religious than in 2012. The peak of the unaffiliated was in 1970 at around 20%, largely due to the influence of European communism. Since communism’s collapse, religion has been experiencing resurgence that will likely continue beyond 2100. All the world’s religions are poised to have enormous numeric growth (with the exceptions of tribal religions and Chinese folk religion), as well as geographic spread with the continuation of migration trends. Adherents of the world’s religions—perhaps particularly Muslims, Hindus, and Buddhists—will continue to settle in the formerly Christian and ever-expanding cities of Europe and North America, causing increases of religious pluralism in these areas. Christians and Muslims together will encompass two-thirds of the global population—more than 7 billion individuals. In 2100, the majority of the world’s 11.6 billion residents will be adherents of religious traditions.

Atheism isn't Edgy or Amazing- It's Dying Out Worldwide



Christianity and China 



Monday, September 4, 2017

PZ Myers has dumped atheism? He is now a secular humanist? Can a leopard change his spots?


The picture above features the atheist PZ Myers giving a talk to an audience which appears to have a significant portion of white males.

Secular humanism is a form of atheism which holds politically progressive stances. Many humanists reject the atheist label (Several studies show that a large section of the public around the world - even atheists - distrust atheists).

Bloomberg News reported that American atheism is very white and deeply Eurocentric.

The atheist PZ Myers recently wrote:
Atheism has squandered its momentum on a defensive old guard and apologists for neglect of events happening in our world. I’m going to have to suggest that we all abandon it. Let’s find an organization that openly states that they want to dismantle the structures of white supremacy and sexist oppression... 
Take a listen to James Croft.  Humanism is a better future
James Croft is the outreach director for the humanist organization Ethical Society of St. Louis (ESS). The ESS says about their organization, "As a nontheistic organization, we foster free religious thought, and our mission is to help answer the ultimate questions, 'How can we create meaningfulness in this life?' and 'How should we treat each other?” without reference to god or the supernatural.' According to the ESS website, their membership is made of atheists, agnostics and some religious people as well.

The staff of the Ethical Society of St. Louis can be seen on their website via this link: Meet our staff

Did you go to the link labeled  Meet our staff? Did you notice anything similar about all seven of the staff members of the Ethical Society of St. Louis?  If so, was it that all seven of the staff members are white?

Where is the ethnic diversity of the staff members of the Ethical Society of St. Louis, PZ Myers? Did the outreach director for the humanist organization Ethical Society of St. Louis encourage any blacks, hispanics, asians and native Americans to apply for a staff position during his outreaches to the community?

According to the 2010 census,  49.2% of St. Louis residents are African American.  Yet not one staff member of the ESS organization listed on the ESS website is an African American.  And I know that ethnic diversity is achievable in urban settings having gone to urban churches with an ethnically diverse staff. If Christians can achieve ethnic diversity in churches, why can't the Ethical Society of St. Louis do the same? The ESS does not even have a token non-white staff member let alone have a rainbow coalition like staff.

Leftists and social progressives are very well-known for dissociating themselves from people and organizations. PZ Myers, are you going to dissociate yourself from James Croft and the  Ethical Society of St. Louis.  Are you going to publicly disavow James Croft and the  Ethical Society of St. Louis?

Are you sure your still not an atheist PZ Myers? The Old Testament prophet Jeremiah declared: "Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots?"  Mr. Myers, your credentials for being a humanist look very spotty indeed!  Your looking very atheistic right now!



Picture credit for picture featured atop this blog post:
Username: palkynebtab
Author: Byron P.
Title: PZ Myers talk at GMU, 9nov2008

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Google Australia: Searches for the term "atheist" is down in the land down under


Google Trends shows how often a particular search-term is entered relative to the total search-volume. 

According to Google trends, the term "atheist" had a relative search volume of 66 in May of 2010 in Australia.  In August of 2017, the term "atheist" has a relative search volume of 22 in Australia.  

Are you an atheist in the land down under?  Can you hear God's thunder? You should run now and seek cover! 


Wednesday, August 23, 2017

New study: So MANY people are suspicious of atheists — even other atheists

Below is an 18th century line engraving of the perverse and cruel atheist Marquis de Sade in prison, 


The Special Broadcasting Service website declares:
According to a new study published last week in Nature, people all over the world connect immorality with atheism. In fact, the moral prejudice against atheists is so strong that it holds even in countries like the Netherlands, where most people aren’t religious. Even atheists themselves, according to the study, are inclined to see nonbelievers as more wicked than the faithful.,.. 
“Entrenched moral suspicion of atheists suggests that religion’s powerful influence on moral judgements persists, even among non-believers in secular societies,” the authors wrote. 
The study, led by University of Kentucky psychology professor Will Gervais, surveyed more than 3,000 people in 13 countries, including nations with Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Muslim, and non-religious majorities: Australia, China, Czech Republic, Finland, Hong Kong, India, Mauritius, Netherlands, New Zealand, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and the United States. 
As they had hypothesised, the researchers found a universal suspicion of atheist morality across all 13 countries. “People overall are roughly twice as likely to view extreme immorality as representative of atheists, relative to believers,” they wrote. “Consistent with predictions, extreme intuitive moral distrust of atheists is both globally evident and variable in its magnitude across countries.” 
The association was somewhat stronger in more religious countries, but even in very secular countries in the study — Australia, China, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom — people were more likely to associate serial killing with atheism, although the gap was narrower. The survey also asked participants to describe their religious beliefs, which allowed the research team to determine that even atheists connected immoral acts to atheism more often than to religious belief.
 In 2016, The Independent indicated:
People's distrust of atheists is “deeply and culturally ingrained”, with even many atheists having an instinctual distrust of each other, according to a new study.
A report published in the UK’s International Journal for The Psychology of Religion found there to be widespread “prejudice” against atheists, despite the fact 13 per cent of Britain’s population place themselves in that category.
In 2012, Scientific American declared:
Atheists are one of the most disliked groups in America. Only 45 percent of Americans say they would vote for a qualified atheist presidential candidate, and atheists are rated as the least desirable group for a potential son-in-law or daughter-in-law to belong to. Will Gervais at the University of British Columbia recently published a set of studies looking at why atheists are so disliked. His conclusion: It comes down to trust. 
Gervais and his colleagues presented participants with a story about a person who accidentally hits a parked car and then fails to leave behind valid insurance information for the other driver. Participants were asked to choose the probability that the person in question was a Christian, a Muslim, a rapist, or an atheist. They thought it equally probable the culprit was an atheist or a rapist, and unlikely the person was a Muslim or Christian. In a different study, Gervais looked at how atheism influences people’s hiring decisions. People were asked to choose between an atheist or a religious candidate for a job requiring either a high or low degree of trust. For the high-trust job of daycare worker, people were more likely to prefer the religious candidate. For the job of waitress, which requires less trust, the atheists fared much better. 
It wasn’t just the highly religious participants who expressed a distrust of atheists. People identifying themselves as having no religious affiliation held similar opinions. Gervais and his colleagues discovered that people distrust atheists because of the belief that people behave better when they think that God is watching over them. This belief may have some truth to it. Gervais and his colleague Ara Norenzayan have found that reminding people about God’s presence has the same effect as telling people they are being watched by others: it increases their feelings of self-consciousness and leads them to behave in more socially acceptable ways.
Public Perception of Militant Atheists



Atheists pray to God you don't ask them this question