Atheists are immoral and depraved, and a world without people believing in God would most definitely implode – these are just two of many popular and very pandemic preconceptions about Atheists, Agnostics and non-religious people in general. But are they true? Is Atheism harmful? I dove into the data to find out. See the results in the infographic.
According to a survey conducted by Gallup International and the WI Network of Market Research, China is the least religious country in the world, with 90% of the population identifying as Atheists. The top 20 non-religious countries include Sweden, the Netherlands, Israel, Germany, Spain and Ireland, where 51% are non-religious, despite the country being famous for its Catholicism.
Even in the US, a country not among the 20 most nonreligious states, the number of people who do not identify with any organized religion is growing, according to an extensive new survey by the Pew Research Center. Little wonder many religious people are scared of the “mental illness” atheism and resort to prejudice as their favored coping strategy. Interestingly, the belief that believers are more healthy than non-believers is “at the very least, an exaggeration”, as scientists have discovered.
But what about other preconceptions? Is Atheism dangerous? Does it undermine societies? Is it harmful for children, as Rep. Monique Davis (D-Chicago) implied? Is it really “none other than raw depravity – the diabolical principle at work in people who dishonor their parents, murder, lie and commit every other moral crime” and are Atheists “criminals of the world community and if there is a sane government, it should treat them accordingly”? Or is it just a “harmful superstition”?
First, we should establish that “the prefix ‘a’ can mean ‘anti’ or ‘non.’ While some atheists are anti-theists, most are non-theists who have no desire to destroy religion” or even protest against it. That’s why we have subsumed all non-religious people under the Atheist label in this article for convenience.
This is what I did to find out whether Atheism is dangerous:
I took the top 20 non-religious countries and analyzed how they rank in regards to peace, safety, happiness, education and generosity. The basis of my evaluation is information provided by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the Human Development and Global Peace indices, the OECD and the World Happiness Report, to name but a few. It is important to consider that correlation does not necessarily imply causation. In other words: The results won’t tell us whether atheism is the reason for the respective countries’ state of affairs. Rather, whatever the situation in these 20 countries is, it is so despite the majority of the population being non-religious.
Here is an infographic on whether atheism is harmful to society:
This article originally appeared on my previous site taze.co.
Are you in a Cult? Find out in this FREE e-book 10 Signs You May Be In A Cult – download it here!