Pew Research Center’s Religious Landscape Study found in its poll released Tuesday more and more Americans are becoming less and less religious, and fewer nowadays are attending church and participating in daily acts of prayer than in past survey years.
Specifically, the share of adults in America who still profess belief in God fell from 92 percent in 2007 to 89 percent in 2014. But as the Associated Press reported, the level of believers in America is still high in comparison to other industrialized nations.
By the numbers: The level of all U.S. adults who say they’re “absolutely certain” God exists fell from 71 percent in 2007 to 63 percent in 2014, and the number of Americans who pray every day and attend church regularly has fallen, as well.
Young people, in particular, are losing their religion, with only 39 percent saying they pray every day. Only half of those born between 1990 and 1996 are “absolutely certain” God exists, compared to 71 percent of those born between 1928 and 1945, the so-called “silent generation,” AP said.
The principle cause is the ever-increasing role that government plays in people’s lives. As I noted at Rebel:
Why are traditional religious communities dying? No, it’s not about any new discovery in science! The great physicists were largely not even materialists…
Rather, in a secular society, religious traditions are usually mediated through private institutions. Each decline in the importance of such institutions shuts off a passage to the life beyond that they mediate.
A child can grow up in a religious home today and discover that there are really only two players that matter: himself and big government. The only mediator and advocate is his entitlement card.
As he loses all interest in traditional spiritual life, he discovers the true faith of the progressive society:
Government controls more and more important stuff, and free association controls less and less. Government grants “freedom” to indulge oneself, of course, but that is almost a sacrament, and one that tends to weaken the citizen.
It makes no sense to be religious in a world where no one asks the great traditional questions any more, like, How should we then live?
Today it’s “Who can I blame for my failures and unhappiness?” “Where is my entitlement?” and “How will we punish those whose success makes us feel bad?”