Atheistic China and loneliness

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China has the world's largest atheist population.[1]

Compared to deeply religious cultures where an extended family and a sense of community often exists, secular countries are often lonelier societies.

China has the world's largest atheist population, but Christianity is growing fast in China.[2][3][4]

China's gender imbalance and loneliness

A Foreign Policy magazine article entitled China’s ‘Hormone Economy’: Monetizing Male Loneliness declared:

China has approximately 40 million to 50 million single men and a highly skewed gender ratio among its younger population. It is perhaps not surprising that many sexually frustrated young men would take their hormone-charged impulses, and hard-earned renminbi, into cyberspace.[5]

Growth of Christianity in China helping reduce loneliness

On November 1, 2014, an article in The Economist entitled Cracks in the atheist edifice declared:

Officials are untroubled by the clash between the city’s famously freewheeling capitalism and the Communist Party’s ideology, yet still see religion and its symbols as affronts to the party’s atheism...

Yang Fenggang of Purdue University, in Indiana, says the Christian church in China has grown by an average of 10% a year since 1980. He reckons that on current trends there will be 250m Christians by around 2030, making China’s Christian population the largest in the world. Mr. Yang says this speed of growth is similar to that seen in fourth-century Rome just before the conversion of Constantine, which paved the way for Christianity to become the religion of his empire.[6]

National Public Radio on Christianity filling a spiritual void in China

As far as filling an emptiness that many Chinese feel inside, National Public Radio's article Chinese Turn To Religion To Fill A Spiritual Vacuum declares:

The collapse of the communist ideology created a void that has left many Chinese staring into a spiritual vacuum, looking for a value system to counterbalance the rampant materialism that seems to govern life in China.

"Chinese people don't know what to believe in anymore," says Liu Zhongyu, a professor at East China Normal University in Shanghai, who conducted the survey. "And since the political atmosphere has relaxed, they turn to religion for comfort."

One young evangelical Christian missionary travels from rural village to village in the Protestant heartland in eastern China to proselytize. She attributed her own conversion to the overwhelming pressures of China's education system.

"In high school, I felt very depressed," said the bright-eyed young woman, who gave her name as Nicole. "I felt people had no direction, and I felt life was dry and boring. I felt the pressure of school was very high. God helped me and liberated me." [7]

National Review on China's atheistic communist persecution of Christians and its negative effects

National Review wrote on China's atheistic communist persecution of Christians:

But the Chinese government engages in a risky game by attacking Christianity’s soft capital. Maoist communism destroyed Chinese civil society, creating widespread distrust and isolation while undermining the nation’s moral foundation. Today’s China is plagued by widespread mistrust and loneliness, as well as pervasive corruption and greed.[8]

China's atheist leader's one child policy and loneliness

A 2012 BBC article entitled Fear and loneliness in China reported:

For many in China isolation is a new experience brought on by economic transformation. In the neighbourhoods where I worked in Chongqing and Beijing, loneliness was spreading like pollution.

The new leadership scheduled to be announced in November will not just have to address failing economic growth and foreign policy dilemmas such as regional territorial disputes, but also the absence of a social safety net, the consequences of the one-child policy and the unhappiness of migrants to cities and factories...

For many in China isolation is a new experience brought on by economic transformation...

Millions of mostly young people have moved to the east coast to work in factories and live itinerant and restricted lives. The hours are long and the work is repetitive....

Suicide rates are so high in some of these factories that the owners have put nets around them to break the fall of people jumping out of windows....

Back home the parents of these "factory girls" are left alone to grow old without the care of their children - breaking a long Confucian tradition of caring for elders...

The one child policy has made children lonely too.[9]

New articles related to China's one child policy causing increased loneliness in China:

See also

External links


  1. Top 50 Countries With Highest Proportion of Atheists / Agnostics (Zuckerman, 2005)
  2. A surprising map of where the world’s atheists live, Washington Post By Max Fisher and Caitlin Dewey May 23, 2013
  3. Cracks in the atheist edifice, The Economist, November 1, 2014
  4. China’s ‘Hormone Economy’: Monetizing Male Loneliness, Foreign Policy Magazine
  5. Cracks in the atheist edifice, The Economist, November 1, 2014
  6. Chinese Turn To Religion To Fill A Spiritual Vacuum, National Public Radio, July 18, 2010
  7. China Still Persecuting Christians, by Jillian Kay Melchior, National Review, February 19, 2014 1:39 PM
  8. Fear and loneliness in China, 16 October 2012 Last updated at 19:23 ET