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LINK Why America's 'nones' don't identify with a religion | Pew Research Center

In previous research, the Center asked religiously unaffiliated Americans who were raised in a religion (who make up a majority of all religious “nones&rdquo😉 to explain in their own words why they no longer identify with any religious group. This question also elicited a wide variety of responses from the “nothing in particular” group. Some said they do not believe in religious teachings or dislike organized religion, while others said they are religious (though unaffiliated) or that they believe in God but do not practice any religion.

zblaze 7 Aug 12

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I think many people don't buy any church doctrine as true, but also don't have the inclination or time to really flesh out what they can really accept as truth. "Unaffiliated" is a viable term for them.

The title atheist is a hand grenade for most of us, it makes life harder but owning it helps others and moves our society towards the secular where it can thrive.

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I had a girlfriend who identified as Christian, but never attended church or identified as a particular sect. She believed that her interpretation of the Bible was more accurate than any denominational interpretation, so she refused to join a church. You know, because thousands of years of biblical interpretation could not match her understanding. ?

Oh I don't know, I would say she was about as correct as the larger denomination.

@ThisGuy I tried to explain to her that the Bible she read is so open to interpretation that it can support the thousands of self described Christian sects, from Amish to snake handlers, Catholics to tongue talkers, tent Evangelical preachers, to million dollar mega churches. So any interpretation she comes up with is probably just as valid.

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I agree to all the reasons listed in this newer article.

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I wonder how many politicians are actually atheist/ agnostic but don't admit it?

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Interesting. I wondered at first how only 89% of atheists could say they don't believe in god, but closer reading shows that it's actually 89% of atheists that list not believing in god as a major reason why they don't identify with a religion. Which makes a bit more sense. An atheist could rationally identify with a religious group for reasons unrelated to theism -- for social or cultural reasons, for example. It wouldn't be the world's most genuine affiliation, as for most religious groups it would involve pretending belief you don't actually have, but there could be pragmatic reasons for doing so, and some liberal religious groups tacitly overlook private disbelief.

I know a lot of Catholics..a lot..that do not believe in God.. but rarely miss mass on Sunday..I was one of them for a time...

They do it because they want a quiet life...also they don't wish to be left out of the family and social or community networks.

I should point out that I and others on census and other official documents ticked the Catholic box..more for political reasons than any true religious belief. Silly but true nonetheless.

I do not do this anymore of course....

@Hitchens Yes, and this also is why some fundamentalists continue to play-act a role as an at least semi-backslidden members of their own congregations ... to keep peace with their spouse and/or children and/or extended family; also, in some parts of the country, to maintain the cultural identification, which may even be important for holding down a job or not being harassed or shunned in everyday life.

@mordant

Yes I suspect the true number of actual Athiests are legion.

Hiding in the long grass..waiting to exhale..or for death to force the breath..

Not covering ourselves in glory...but there it is...

@Hitchens I agree with you, Catholics are some of the biggest hypocrites I have ever seen. Funniest thing I see them do is meatless Friday as a sacrifice, but then they all go out for fish at a restaurant, some sacrifice. Many know its not real but don't want to be labeled by the others.

@16classic

Yea..its riddled with hypocrisy..just dreadful really...

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