Global trends towards secularization
Brink Lindsey has an interesting post at his blog about the increasing numbers of nonreligious people globally over the last five decades, and speculation about why the U.S. remains so religious. He suggests that it’s not the separation of church and state (with Australia and New Zealand as counter-examples to the U.S.), but ethnic heterogeneity and geographic mobility–that church membership acts to ease the transition of a move to a new geographic region.
The post that inspired Lindsey’s commentary, by Razib at Gene Expression, is also well worth reading. He throws some cold water on the idea that a decline in organized religion entails an increase in a scientific, naturalistic view of the world (as opposed to, for example, a nontheistic supernaturalism).
And Razib’s commentary is itself a response to a piece at Edge: The Third Culture titled “Why the Gods are not Winning” by Gregory Paul and Phil Zuckerman.
Enjoy reading all three…