Monday, December 25, 2006

Britons: Religion does more harm than good

The secular UK public is down on religion. Most British are not religious and are dismayed at those who are.
Most people have no personal faith, the poll shows, with only 33% of those questioned describing themselves as "a religious person". A clear majority, 63%, say that they are not religious - including more than half of those who describe themselves as Christian.

The poll also reveals that non-believers outnumber believers in Britain by almost two to one. It paints a picture of a sceptical nation with massive doubts about the effect religion has on society: 82% of those questioned say they see religion as a cause of division and tension between people. Only 16% disagree.
While our politicians often refer to the United States as a Christian nation, only 17% consider Great Britain to be a Christian nation. Of course, any nation that thinks The Life of Brian is a more religious movie than The Passion of The Christ must be doing something right.
At a time when secularism is being blamed for the erosion of Christian values, cinemagoers should perhaps ask themselves whether the true spirit of Christmas can indeed be found in such flawed fare as The Nativity Story. Or whether, as has so often been the case, we should look outside of the evangelical canon for films which best embody the values of peace on earth and goodwill to all men.
Most Christian know little about their religion, how many know that a more comprehensive story of Mary is told in the Koran?

It does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no God. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg. - Thomas Jefferson

The Golden Rule in religions. We all know the Golden Rule in politics and business - He who has the Gold makes the rules. Not all believe in the Golden Rule - "this form of reciprocal ethics only can support the status quo, it does not create any better moral system than what already exists."

Is the UK more Hellish than the US with its fewer born-agains? I would say the opposite. This is much like surveys that show belief in Hell is much stronger among those in prison than those outside. I can't find an online source of this now. It was from an article debunking some conservative Christian beliefs in the necessity of Hell to compel people to be good. All that is needed to debunk that is that less than 1% of Americans believe they will go to Hell. It is possible a belief in Hell and damnation lead to more hateful behaviors.

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