U.S. RELIGIOUS GROUPS GENERATE MORE MONEY THAN MICROSOFT AND APPLE COMBINED

by Phillip Schneider, Staff Writer Waking Times Since the founding of the country, religion of some type has always played an active role in the lives of a majority of Americans. Although religious faith is on a long-term downward trend while secularism is on the rise, about 70.6% of Americans still identified as Christian in 2014, while 5.9% had “Non-Christian faiths” such as Judaism or Islam, according to Pew Research Center. These numbers mean that over one in four Americans believe in some form of non-atheistic religion. Much research has been done into the community impact of religion. Sometimes, religion is used as … Continue reading U.S. RELIGIOUS GROUPS GENERATE MORE MONEY THAN MICROSOFT AND APPLE COMBINED

Who is God? Americans are as divided as imaginable on a definition

Who is God? (Photo: Erik Von Weber/Getty Images/Big Think)  by DEREK BERES An inability to describe what God is or what a higher power entails is widespread. A new Pew Research study of 4,729 U.S adults found that while nine out of ten Americans believe in such a higher power, they don’t agree on what that actually means.  As the chart below shows, four-fifths of the nation believes in God, while 9 percent of those who do not believe in God claim they “believe in some higher power/spiritual force.” Nearly a quarter of believers feel that this higher force is not what the … Continue reading Who is God? Americans are as divided as imaginable on a definition

Religion isn’t going anywhere, but the demographics are shifting dramatically

Christian Orthodox worshipers hold candles lit from a flame that emerged from the tomb believed to be of Jesus Christ. (Photo by Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images)  by PAUL RATNER Religion is still an integral part of many modern societies, influencing laws and people’s behavior, as well as the way adherents relate to others in the world. Are religions going away any time soon? Despite what some decry, there is little evidence of that. What is changing is the composition of the world’s believers. Christianity has been the world’s largest religion for millennia but its reign might come to an end sometime during … Continue reading Religion isn’t going anywhere, but the demographics are shifting dramatically

A Co-founder of the Satanic Temple on Rebranding Satan in the 21st Century

by Miles Klee If you follow offbeat news or legal battles, you’ve read stories about the Satanic Temple. The religious activist group has turned up in all corners of the country, counter-protesting anti-choice picketers at Planned Parenthood in Detroit, performing a gay “Pink Mass” over the grave of Westboro Baptist Church founder Fred Phelps’ mother in Mississippi, and offering to take in Muslims or other refugees following the 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris. But you probably didn’t know that they lobby against corporal punishment for schoolchildren and seek to debunk pseudoscientific mental health care. You may have not even realized the Satanic Temple is a different … Continue reading A Co-founder of the Satanic Temple on Rebranding Satan in the 21st Century

2 THINGS THE POPE WILL NEVER TELL YOU ABOUT HELL

by Vic Bishop, Staff Writer Waking Times Just before Easter weekend, Pope Francis was quoted by an Italian journalist, who claimed the outspoken Catholic figurehead had denied the existence of hell. A comment like this is big news for such a big belief system, and shortly after the story was published the Vatican refuted the statements, calling it all a misquote. By then, however, the story had already been picked up by international media, generating significant controversy. During the meeting Scalfari asked the pope where “bad souls” go, to which he was quoted as responding: “They are not punished. Those who repent obtain … Continue reading 2 THINGS THE POPE WILL NEVER TELL YOU ABOUT HELL

The First Generation of Jewish and Muslim Men Conflicted About Having Their Sons Circumcised

by Hussein Kesvani Hassan al-Khateb, a 34-year-old management consultant from London, and his wife Shireen, are due to give birth to a son in about four months. To prepare for the baby’s arrival, they’ve bought a new house in a leafy suburb, complete with a room for the newborn and umpteen toys and games given to them by friends and family, all of whom are eagerly awaiting the due date. Hassan is definitely excited, too. He’s dreamt of becoming a father since his teens — and especially having someone who he can “teach how to ride a bike,” and more importantly, to … Continue reading The First Generation of Jewish and Muslim Men Conflicted About Having Their Sons Circumcised

The Female Quran Experts Fighting Radical Islam in Morocco

Moroccan students studying Islamic theology in RabatAbdelhak Senna / AFP / Getty Images “The women scholars here are even more important than men.” by DINA TEMPLE-RASTON Morocco is in a region vulnerable to terrorist recruitment, but it hasn’t had a significant attack on its own soil since 2011, when terrorists bombed a Marrakesh café. Yet ethnic Moroccans have been at the center of ISIS attacks in Europe. The only alleged survivor of the 2015 Paris rampage is a Frenchman of Moroccan origin; his trial began last week. The men behind the Brussels airport and tram bombings that happened months later … Continue reading The Female Quran Experts Fighting Radical Islam in Morocco