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Not a done deal, of course, but troublesome nevertheless.  Especially in once-Catholic countries like Austria and Ireland.

Ah, the new Springtime!



http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-12811197

Religion may become extinct in nine nations, study says
By Jason Palmer Science and technology reporter, BBC News, Dallas
Half-empty church In the UK, Wales has the highest proportion of religiously "non-affiliated"
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A study using census data from nine countries shows that religion there is set for extinction, say researchers.

The study found a steady rise in those claiming no religious affiliation.

The team's mathematical model attempts to account for the interplay between the number of religious respondents and the social motives behind being one.

The result, reported at the American Physical Society meeting in Dallas, US, indicates that religion will all but die out altogether in those countries.

The team took census data stretching back as far as a century from countries in which the census queried religious affiliation: Australia, Austria, Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland, Ireland, the Netherlands, New Zealand and Switzerland.

Nonlinear dynamics is invoked to explain a wide range of physical phenomena in which a number of factors play a part.

One of the team, Daniel Abrams of Northwestern University, put forth a similar model in 2003 to put a numerical basis behind the decline of lesser-spoken world languages.

At its heart is the competition between speakers of different languages, and the "utility" of speaking one instead of another.

"The idea is pretty simple," said Richard Wiener of the Research Corporation for Science Advancement, and the University of Arizona.

"It posits that social groups that have more members are going to be more attractive to join, and it posits that social groups have a social status or utility.

"For example in languages, there can be greater utility or status in speaking Spanish instead of [the dying language] Quechuan in Peru, and similarly there's some kind of status or utility in being a member of a religion or not."
A man fills in a census form Some of the census data the team used date from the 19th century

Dr Wiener continued: "In a large number of modern secular democracies, there's been a trend that folk are identifying themselves as non-affiliated with religion; in the Netherlands the number was 40%, and the highest we saw was in the Czech Republic, where the number was 60%."

The team then applied their nonlinear dynamics model, adjusting parameters for the relative social and utilitarian merits of membership of the "non-religious" category.

They found, in a study published online, that those parameters were similar across all the countries studied, suggesting that similar behaviour drives the mathematics in all of them.

And in all the countries, the indications were that religion was headed toward extinction.

However, Dr Wiener told the conference that the team was working to update the model with a "network structure" more representative of the one at work in the world.

"Obviously we don't really believe this is the network structure of a modern society, where each person is influenced equally by all the other people in society," he said.

However, he told BBC News that he thought it was "a suggestive result".

"It's interesting that a fairly simple model captures the data, and if those simple ideas are correct, it suggests where this might be going.

"Obviously much more complicated things are going on with any one individual, but maybe a lot of that averages out."
Hmmmm.... interesting.  My question though is what about the infiltration of Muslim immigrants to Europe and their high reproductive rates?  It was my understanding that the number of Muslims in most European countries is growing faster than the number of non-religious.  I don't know about anyone else, but countries becoming Muslim scare me more than countries becoming non-religious.  Nevertheless, it is so sad to see the number of faithful Catholics dwindling, but it is ultimately in God's hands.
From the study itself:

"People claiming no religious aliation constitute the fastest growing religious minority in many countries throughout the world. Americans without religious affiliation comprise the only religious group growing in all 50 states; in 2008 those claiming no religion rose to 15 percent nationwide, with a maximum in Vermont at 34 percent. In the Netherlands nearly half the population is religiously unaffiliated. Here we use a minimal model of competition for members between social groups to explain historical census data on the growth of religious non-affiliation in 85 regions around the world. According to the model, a single parameter quantifying the perceived utility of adhering to a religion determines whether the unaliated group will grow in a society. The model predicts that for societies in which the perceived utility of not adhering is greater than the utility of adhering, religion will be driven toward extinction."

http://arxiv.org/abs/1012.1375

They're lumping all religions together for the sake of the study.

Basically if folks believe in hell and mortal sin, the usefulness of adhering to a religion that is perceived as being able to save them from those things will outweigh whatever benefits being non-religious would bring. The opposite is true: if hell doesn't exist and there is no mortal sin, why live a of sacrifice and challenge when you could be busy doing whatever you want.

I think the word "extinction" is completely misleading though. The study says it will be driven toward extinction.

This also proves the BS that Russia has already been properly consecrated though - the Czech Republic is still suffering under the errors of Russia with its #1 no religious affiliation percentage.
Nietzsche said "God is dead" ...and too many Ubermenschen have listened.



From a sociological standpoint, only one Eastern European country?  Czech?  Ergo, one would assume most of these would have been former Communist countries, but
that is not the case.  How mysterious is God's ways!  Preserves the faith in unseen ways, when it is free it whither s, and when it is persecuted it grows. 
(03-22-2011, 01:50 PM)chiella Wrote: [ -> ]Hmmmm.... interesting.  My question though is what about the infiltration of Muslim immigrants to Europe and their high reproductive rates?  It was my understanding that the number of Muslims in most European countries is growing faster than the number of non-religious.  I don't know about anyone else, but countries becoming Muslim scare me more than countries becoming non-religious.  Nevertheless, it is so sad to see the number of faithful Catholics dwindling, but it is ultimately in God's hands.
I don't know, I think I might prefer to live in a Muslim society rather than in one that has been completely dominated by secular liberalism.
(03-22-2011, 02:33 PM)Don Quixote Wrote: [ -> ]From a sociological standpoint, only one Eastern European country?  Czech?  Ergo, one would assume most of these would have been former Communist countries, but
that is not the case.  How mysterious is God's ways!  Preserves the faith in unseen ways, when it is free it whither s, and when it is persecuted it grows. 

They only chose one Eastern European country to study:

"Data used in validating this model originated in census surveys from a range of countries worldwide. A total of 85 data sets had 5 or more independent data points. These came from various regions of 9 different countries: Australia, Austria, Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland, Ireland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and Switzerland."
(03-22-2011, 02:44 PM)Bakuryokuso Wrote: [ -> ]
(03-22-2011, 02:33 PM)Don Quixote Wrote: [ -> ]From a sociological standpoint, only one Eastern European country?  Czech?  Ergo, one would assume most of these would have been former Communist countries, but
that is not the case.  How mysterious is God's ways!  Preserves the faith in unseen ways, when it is free it whither s, and when it is persecuted it grows. 

They only chose one Eastern European country to study:

"Data used in validating this model originated in census surveys from a range of countries worldwide. A total of 85 data sets had 5 or more independent data points. These came from various regions of 9 different countries: Australia, Austria, Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland, Ireland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and Switzerland."

I think they were limited by countries that ask religious affiliation in the country's census.  I suspect most don't.
I dont buy it. Extinct is a very difinitive word. Though studies like this suit relativist and athiest ends I donr buy it. Certainly in tue short term some places will be an athiest utopia but in the end when fallen man starts ceding on itself o. A large scale again I reckon the tide will turn
my o2
the BBC well this is a corner stnw of its agenda. Thogh not the authors od the study it sure lauds it
 
(03-22-2011, 02:50 PM)devotedknuckles Wrote: [ -> ]I dont buy it. Extinct is a very difinitive word. Though studies like this suit relativist and athiest ends I donr buy it. Certainly in tue short term some places will be an athiest utopia but in the end when fallen man starts ceding on itself o. A large scale again I reckon the tide will turn
my o2
the BBC well this is a corner stnw of its agenda. Thogh not the authors od the study it sure lauds it
 

I totally agree with you. When a country abandons the true faith it will be chastised which will create conditions for a return to the faith. It's an ebb and flow like in the book of Judges.
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