Atheism, divorce, addiction, sexual satisfaction, social skills, dysfunctional beliefs and attitudes, and irrationality

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The atheist divorce rate is a steep 37%.[1]

For more information, please see: Atheism and divorce

The atheist divorce rate is a steep 37%.[1] Additionally, 51% of atheists are likely to cohabit and 31% of atheists never actually get married.[1] Christian apologist Michael Caputo wrote: "Recently the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life has published its mammoth study on Religion in America based on 35,000 interviews... According to the Pew Forum a whopping 37% of atheists never marry as opposed to 19% of the American population, 17% of Protestants and 17% of Catholics."[2]

According to the 2001 American Religious Identification Survey (ARIS) over 50% of all atheists and agnostics don’t get married.[3] See also: Atheism and marriage

Scientific research has demonstrated that active churchgoers are "35% less likely to divorce than those who have no religious preferences".[4]

The fertility rate is significantly lower in the atheist population (see: Atheism and fertility rates).

As far as atheists and divorce, Theodore Beale wrote in his book The Irrational Atheist about atheist Daniel Dennett's arguments related to divorce:

Dennett further claims that “brights” have better family values than born-again Christians based on “the lowest divorce rate in the United States” which depends on the flawed 1999 Barna study instead of the 2001 ARIS study he makes use of later in the book, a much larger study that reaches precisely the opposite conclusion. It is certainly a quixotic assertion, considering that these family value atheists are half as likely to get married, twice as likely to divorce, and have fewer children than any other group in the United States...

Barna calculated divorces as a percentage of the entire group, not as a percentage of marriages within that group. Since according to ARIS 2001 more than half of all atheists and agnostics don’t get married, this is an apple-orange comparison. If one correctly excludes the never-married from the calculation, then atheists are 58.7 percent more likely to get divorced than Pentecostals and Baptists, the two born-again Christian groups with the highest rate of divorce, and more than twice as likely to get divorced than Christians in general.[5]

Contents

Atheism and the causes of divorce

An angry atheist speaking to a woman with a Bible in her hand.

The Christian philosopher James S. Spiegel says that the path from Christianity to atheism among several of his friends involved moral slippage such as resentment or unforgiveness.[6] See also: Atheism and anger and Atheism and love

According to the abstraction for the journal article The Relationship between Dysfunctional Attitudes and Communication Skills of Women with an Addicted Husband on the Verge of Divorce published in the journal Addiction and Health:

Divorce and addiction are the source of numerous social damages. The main reasons for divorce include spouse addiction, sexual dissatisfaction, low living and communication skills of couples, dysfunctional beliefs and attitudes, and irrational expectations of marriage. The present study was carried out with the aim to investigate the relationship between dysfunctional attitudes and communication skills among women with an addicted husband on the verge of divorce referring to the forensic medicine and family court.[7]

As far as atheism and addiction, please see: Atheism and alcoholism and Atheism and drug addiction

Research indicates that atheists have less sexual satisfaction than Christians (See: Atheism and sexuality).

Some of the irrational expectations in marriage are reflected in statements such as[8]:

“Love means never having to say you’re sorry”. (See: Atheism and forgiveness and Atheism and arrogance).

“You shouldn’t have to work at marriage.” (See: Atheism and sloth and Atheism and apathy and Atheism and amotivational syndrome)

“Personal happiness is more important than staying in a ‘love-less’ marriage.” (See also: Atheism and hedonism and Atheism and happiness and Atheism and love)

Atheism and substance abuse

Alcoholism was a serious social problem in the former atheistic Soviet Union.[9] Between 1940 and 1980, this atheist state had the largest increase of the amount of alcohol usage in the developed world.[10]

See also: Atheism and alcoholism and Atheism and drug addiction

Atheism and alcoholism

See also: Atheism and alcoholism

At least 100 studies suggests religion has a positive effect on preventing alcohol-related problems, researchers Christopher Ellison, Jennifer Barrett and Benjamin Moulton noted in an article in the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion on “Gender, Marital Status, and Alcohol Behavior: The Neglected Role of Religion.”[11]

The Barna Group found that atheists and agnostics in America were more likely, than theists in America, to look upon the following behaviors as morally acceptable: excessive drinking; illegal drug use; sexual relationships outside of marriage; abortion; cohabitating with someone of opposite sex outside of marriage; obscene language; gambling; pornography and obscene sexual behavior; and engaging in homosexuality/bisexuality.[12]

Alcoholism and divorce

According to the article The Link Between Alcoholism and Divorce:

Regarding the correlation between alcoholism and divorce, the real issue seems to arise when only one spouse is the heavy drinker in the marriage. Studies have shown that when one spouse has a drinking problem, the couple is much more likely to divorce.

For example, according to a study published in May 2014 in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, researchers from the University of Michigan found that nearly half of the more than 17,000 study participants with a history of alcoholism got a divorce at some point in their lives, while only 30% of the participants who were not affected by serious alcohol problems got a divorce.

The consequences of periodic or ongoing excessive drinking can lead to the deterioration of the communication channels, as well as the intimate relationship between the couple. Specific manifestations of such deterioration may include arguments, serious financial problems, acts of infidelity and acts of violence.[13]

Atheism and drug addiction

See also: Atheism and drug addiction

Studies indicate that religious individuals are less likely to engage in illegal drug use than atheists/nonreligious.[14][15][16]

According to Science Daily:

Young Swiss men who say that they believe in God are less likely to smoke cigarettes or pot or take ecstasy pills than Swiss men of the same age group who describe themselves as atheists. Belief is a protective factor against addictive behaviour. This is the conclusion reached by a study funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation.

Karl Marx said that religion was the opium of the people. New figures now suggest that religion plays a role in preventing substance misuse. A research team led by Gerhard Gmel from Lausanne University Hospital has shown in the journal Substance Use & Misuse that, in Switzerland, fewer religious young men consume addictive substances than men of their age group who are agnostics or atheists.

At the army recruitment centre For their study on substance use in Switzerland, Gmel and his colleagues interviewed almost twenty-year-old men at army recruitment centres in Lausanne, Windisch and Mels between August 2010 and November 2011. The researchers have now evaluated the 5387 questionnaires completed by the young men. Based on the responses, the scientists split the young men into five groups: the "religious" believe in God and attend church services, the "spiritual" believe in a higher power, but do not practice any religion, the "unsure" do not know what to believe about God, the "agnostics" assume that no-one can know whether there is a God or not, and the "atheists" do not believe in God.[17]

Statistics on religion/irreligion and drug use

See also: Illegal drugs

The Christian Post reported:

Religion has "enormous potential for lowering the risk of substance abuse among teens and adults," according to the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse. They report that adults and teens who consider religion to be very important and who attend religious services weekly or more often are "far less likely to smoke, drink or use illicit drugs." In addition, those battling addiction who attend spiritually-based support programs as part of their treatment "are more likely to maintain sobriety."

By contrast, adults who never attend religious services are "almost seven times likelier to drink, three times likelier to smoke, more than five times likelier to have used an illicit drug other than marijuana, almost seven times likelier to binge drink and almost eight times likelier to use marijuana" than adults who attend religious services at least once a week.

Research also indicates that teenagers who are involved in religious activities are half as likely to have substance abuse problems as those who are not. In addition, spirituality has been found to help teens overcome genetic tendencies for alcoholism, social pressure, and a family history of abuse.[18]

Religion has "enormous potential for lowering the risk of substance abuse among teens and adults," according to the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse.[19]

Atheism, marijuana use and amotivational syndrome

See also: Atheism and amotivational syndrome and Atheism and apathy

Researchers at Florida State University found a strong correlation between an individuals's lack of religious involvement and marijuana use.[20] See also: Atheism and drug addiction and Atheism and alcoholism

Many women find men with purpose, goals and ambition attractive.

Researchers at Florida State University found a strong correlation between an individuals's lack of religious involvement and marijuana use.[21]

According to Science Daily: "Young Swiss men who say that they believe in God are less likely to smoke cigarettes or pot or take ecstasy pills than Swiss men of the same age group who describe themselves as atheists. Belief is a protective factor against addictive behaviour. This is the conclusion reached by a study funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation."[22]

According to Scientific American: "Research also suggests that a religious brain exhibits higher levels of dopamine, a hormone associated with increased attention and motivation."[23] See also: Atheism and motivation

According to Study.com:

Amotivational syndrome is a term that refers to a lack of desire to complete tasks, a sense of apathy about the future, poor concentration, and decreased interest in social and other activities...

The prefix 'a' means 'not' or 'without.' People who are identified as having amotivational syndrome are 'without motivation.' We all have times when we just can't face our work day or we lose momentum on a project. Perhaps there are certain areas in which you have great trouble maintaining focus, such as daily flossing or going to the gym. However, when an attitude or set of behaviors is called a syndrome, this refers to a larger problem. The person with amotivational syndrome lacks motivation in most areas of his or her life.

While a lack of motivation can be seen alongside problems such as depression, immaturity, or even learning disabilities, the most commonly cited cause of amotivational syndrome is marijuana use.[24]

Atheism and sexual satisfaction

See also: Atheism and sexuality

Research indicates that religious women (especially evangelical/low church Protestant women) are more sexually satisfied than irreligious women.[25][26][27] See also: Atheism and women

Ben Freeland in his article No Sex Please, We're Atheists reported:

...the public face of atheism tends to be dominated by the nerd set — scientists, computer engineers and other geeks who transitioned from awkward, socially (and sexually) insecure teenagers into cerebral adults who tend to view everything from the neck down as machinery necessary for getting the head from Conference A to Conference B.

International surveys of sexual satisfaction — as unreliable as such surveys are — also suggests that widespread atheism is bad news in the bedroom. According to Durex USA’s most recent international survey, the world’s most sexually satisfied country is the spectacularly religious Nigeria, with heavily Catholic countries like Spain, Italy, Brazil, and Mexico (and staunchly Orthodox Greece) in hot pursuit. Among the world’s most atheistic it’s a mixed bag...[28]

A social science study also reports that Hispanic men are more sexually satisfied than other ethnic groups in the United States.[29] Hispanics are known for their religiosity. For example, in 2015, BloombergView reported concerning the United States: "According to a much-discussed 2012 report from the Pew Research Center on Religion and Public Life, only 3 percent of U.S. atheists and agnostics are black, 6 percent are Hispanic, and 4 percent are Asian. Some 82 percent are white. (The relevant figures for the population at large at the time of the survey were 66 percent white, 11 percent black, 15 percent Hispanic, 5 percent Asian.)"[30] See also: Western atheism and race

In 2011, The Daily Beast conceded in an article entitled Why Are Christians Having Better Sex Than the Rest of Us?, "The devout are actually having better sex than the rest of us."[26]

In the United States, the Republican Party has a large segment of religious conservatives and they are influential within the party.[31] ABC News reported that "More Republicans Satisfied With Sex Lives Than Democrats".[32]

Sub-replacement fertility of atheist populations. High fertility rate of religious conservatives

Eric Kaufmann, a professor at Birkbeck College, University of London, using a wealth of demographic studies, argues that there will be a significant decline of global atheism in the 21st century which will impact the Western World.[33]

See also: Atheism and fertility rates and Atheism and marriage and Atheist marriages

As a group, atheists have sub-replacement levels of fertility.[34]

On December 23, 2012, Professor Eric Kaufmann who teaches at Birbeck College, University of London wrote:

I argue that 97% of the world's population growth is taking place in the developing world, where 95% of people are religious.

On the other hand, the secular West and East Asia has very low fertility and a rapidly aging population... In the coming decades, the developed world's demand for workers to pay its pensions and work in its service sector will soar alongside the booming supply of young people in the third world. Ergo, we can expect significant immigration to the secular West which will import religious revival on the back of ethnic change. In addition, those with religious beliefs tend to have higher birth rates than the secular population, with fundamentalists having far larger families. The epicentre of these trends will be in immigration gateway cities like New York (a third white), Amsterdam (half Dutch), Los Angeles (28% white), and London, 45% white British. [35]

Michael Blume, a researcher at the University of Jena in Germany, wrote "Most societies or communities that have espoused atheistic beliefs have not survived more than a century."[36] Blume also indicated concerning concerning his research on this matter: "What I found was the complete lack of a single case of a secular population, community or movement that would just manage to retain replacement level."[36]

In March 2010, The Telegraph published an article entitled Atheism is doomed: the contraceptive Pill is secularism's cyanide tablet which indicated:

Across the western world the fertility rate of religious conservatives far outstrips that of non-believers, so much so that modern liberal secularism is endangered. That, anyway, is the thesis of Shall the Religious Inherit the Earth?, a fascinating new book by Eric Kaufmann of Birkbeck University, which is published later this month. It may well be one of the most significant books of our era.[37]

Atheism, divorce and poor interpersonal skills

See also: Atheism, divorce, love and poor interpersonal skills

Richard Dawkins
The new atheist Richard Dawkins was leading figure in the Elevatorgate controversy.

Richard Dawkins has been divorced three times. See: Richard Dawkins and women

Atheists have poor social skills (See: Atheism and social skills).

According to an international study done by William Bainbridge, atheism is frequent among people whose interpersonal social obligations are weak and is also linked to lower fertility rates in advanced industrial nations (See also: Atheism and fertility rates).[38] In 2017, the atheist PZ Myers, quoting fellow leftist Alex Nichols, wrote: "...the growing popularity of jibes associating outspoken atheists with fedoras, neckbeards, and virginity, led to an exodus of liberals and leftists from the “atheist” tent. Those who remained for the most part lacked in social skills and self-awareness, and the results were disastrous."[39]

In 2021, Sandra Aponte, MA, RMHCI wrote the article The 4 Communication Styles That Lead To Divorce With 90% Accuracy which indicated:

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are considered metaphorical figures in the New Testament’s final book of Revelation. Written down by John of Patmos after receiving a vision from God, they detail pestilence, war, famine, and death — kicking off a divine countdown for the end of the world and the Last Judgement.

Inspired by the ominous signs of this biblical vision, Dr. John Gottman describes his divorce-predicting research by the same name. More specifically, the communication styles that predicted the end of a relationship with 90% accuracy. His incredible research was completed with the assistance of 3,000 couples — who he followed and studied for over 20 years. As such, he was able to predict which couples would stay together, and which ones would end up divorcing within 6 years of the wedding.

The four communication styles were:

  • Criticism: when you attack or criticize the character of your partner
  • Defensiveness: a response to criticism — it is when you come up with excuses and play the victim
  • Contempt: when you make your partner feel worthless through disrespect and non-verbal cues
  • Stonewalling: a response to contempt — it is when you shut down, stop responding to your partner and completely withdraw[40]

Atheism, divorce and unforgiveness

See also: Atheism and forgiveness

According to the psychologist Terry Gaspard, MSW, LICSW: "Recent studies have shown that forgiveness is an essential component of successful romantic relationships. In fact, the capacity to seek and grant forgiveness is one of the most significant factors contributing to marital satisfaction and a lifetime of love."[41]

Jesus Christ and his apostles taught a gospel of love.[42]

Christian theology emphasizes the importance of love and forgiveness.[43] As adults, children who attended religious services regularly are 87 percent more likely to possess high levels of forgiveness and are also 47 percent more likely to have a high sense of mission and purpose.[44] On the other hand, the atheistic worldview provides no basis for forgiveness (see: Atheism and forgiveness). Within the Western atheist population, there is very high levels of division/infighting (see: Atheist factions).

The atheist Neil Carter wrote:

Friends of mine have noted lately how biting and critical the atheist community can be, not only toward outsiders, but even toward its own members. Has there ever been a subculture more prone to eating its own than this one? I really don’t know...

At least Christians have to pay lipservice to forgiveness because they believe it’s what God wants from them. Do atheists have any such compunction? I fear that we have no mechanism which compels us as a community to be kind to each other, to speak to one another with respect [45]

Atheist Todd Steifel, a donor to atheist organizations, admits theists are "much more more able to forgive sin" and says that the atheist movement is weak.[46] See also: Decline of the atheist movement

Jesus Christ and Christendom have emphasized the importance of forgiveness and in the last few decades mental health specialists have increasingly seen the importance of forgiveness to alleviate bitterness and other emotional problems within individuals.[47]

As adults, children who attended religious services regularly are 87 percent more likely to possess high levels of forgiveness.[48] See also: Atheism and emotional problems

John Lennox on atheism having no basis for forgiveness

Miriam Diez Bosch, who interviewed Christian apologist John Lennox wrote:

Where creation has become dehumanized, the core concepts of faith — mercy and forgiveness — become meaningless and irrelevant, says Lennox.

“It is one of the reasons why I am a Christian, because atheism has no forgiveness, of course, and no ultimate justice. The genius of Christianity is that the acceptance does not come after the final Judgment, it comes at the start, because God has done something in Christ that deals with my central problem of guilt. I live my life not to gain God’s acceptance, but because I have got it as a free gift.”

This acquaintance with mercy begets mercy, “always. I want every day and every year to be a Year of Mercy and I am glad to see that emphasis because this is the Christian Gospel: God in his grace has shown mercy to us. It is not something I deserve, it is something God offers.”[49]

James S. Spiegal and unforgiveness as a cause of atheism

See also: Causes of atheism and Atheism and bitterness and Atheism and love

The Apostle Paul taught about love that "it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered.." (1 Corinthians 13:5 NASB). See: Atheism and love

The Christian Post reports about the Christian philosopher James S. Spiegel's book The Making of an Atheist: "Spiegel, who converted to Christianity in 1980, has witnessed the pattern among several of his friends. Their path from Christianity to atheism involved: moral slippage (such as infidelity, resentment or unforgiveness); followed by withdrawal from contact with fellow believers; followed by growing doubts about their faith, accompanied by continued indulgence in the respective sin; and culminating in a conscious rejection of God."[50]

Irreligion and domestic violence

See also: Irreligion and domestic violence

Research suggests that irreligiousity is a causal factor for domestic violence.[51]

The abstract for the 2007 article in the journal Violence Against Women entitled Race/Ethnicity, Religious Involvement, and Domestic Violence indicated:

The authors explored the relationship between religious involvement and intimate partner violence by analyzing data from the first wave of the National Survey of Families and Households. They found that: (a) religious involvement is correlated with reduced levels of domestic violence; (b) levels of domestic violence vary by race/ethnicity; (c) the effects of religious involvement on domestic violence vary by race/ethnicity; and (d) religious involvement, specifically church attendance, protects against domestic violence, and this protective effect is stronger for African American men and women and for Hispanic men, groups that, for a variety of reasons, experience elevated risk for this type of violence.[52]

Also, a quote from the journal article Race/Ethnicity, Religious Involvement, and Domestic Violence:

Another line of thought suggests that religious people may be less likely to perpe- trate domestic violence (Fergusson, Horwood, Kershaw, & Shannon, 1986). A 1999 study of U.S. couples found that both men and women who attend religious services regularly are less likely to commit acts of domestic violence than those who attend rarely or not at all (Ellison et al., 1999). A follow-up study identified three pathways through which religious involvement may operate; namely, increasing levels of social integration and social support, reducing the likelihood of alcohol or substance abuse, and decreasing the risk of psychological problems (Ellison & Anderson, 2001). However, even after considering such indirect effects of religion through the use of sta- tistical controls, that study found that regular religious involvement still had a protec- tive effect against the perpetration of domestic violence by both men and women (Ellison & Anderson, 2001). In addition, that study showed that evidence of such pro- tective religious effects persisted regardless of whether domestic violence was measured using data from self reports or partner reports, which makes it difficult to attribute these observed religious effects to simple social desirability or other response bias.[53]

The Journal of Family Issues also reported that religious belief diminishes the likelihood of domestic violence.[54]

Secular Europe and domestic violence

See: Secular Europe and domestic violence

Atheism and love

See also: Atheism and love

Most atheists likely live in East Asia (see: Asian atheism).

A beggar in Cambodia. In Cambodia, the vast majority of the population adheres to a nontheistic form of Buddhism called the Theravada school of Buddhism.

A comprehensive study by Harvard University professor Robert Putnam found that religious people are more charitable than their irreligious counterparts.[55]

From a moral, metaphysical and spiritual perspective, atheists have an inability to satisfactorily explain the existence of love.[56][57]

From a moral, metaphysical and spiritual perspective, atheists have an inability to satisfactorily explain the existence of love.[58][59] See also: Atheism and morality

Dr. Taylor Marshall wrote about atheism and love:

All my atheist friends and family members believe in “love.” But what is love? Here’s a question:

If humans have no soul, and are merely evolutionary advanced animals, is ‘love’ anything more than instinct or hormones?

....if love is not exclusively religious, then what is it? Let's explore the two most basic forms of love: love of a parent for a child and the nuptial love between husband and wife.

When mommy says to her one year old, “I love you,” the atheist says she is not expressing anything metaphysical or spiritual. In fact, says the atheist, the mother is verbalizing the instinct to preserve her species, just as a mommy zebra protects and fosters the growth of the baby zebra. That’s it. Nothing more. It is instinct combined with verbal tags. When a parent “loves” her child, she is just adding a verbal cue to an advanced evolutionary instinct to carry on the species.

The same empirical reality is true between two lovers. For the atheist, nothing sacramental, metaphysical, or spiritual is happening in a loving relationship. The two don’t “become one flesh” as we say in Biblical and matrimonial language any more than a rooster and a hen “become one flesh.”

When a man says, “I love you,” to his wife, he is simply expressing something about his hormonal levels toward her as a mate. What he is really saying is, “My hormones surge for you,” not “You are my soul mate,” because the atheist doesn’t believe in souls or metaphysical connections between humans.

Incidentally, a man’s hormones might start surging for another woman (or several women) at some point. The same man might also be ready to say, “I love you,” to these new women, too.[60]

A Christian apologist wrote about atheism and love:

It seems that atheist naturalism struggles to present an adequate account of ‘love’. It is certainly difficult to describe love from a purely ‘scientific’ perspective. i.e. it is not something we can see, measure,taste or touch. Tepper presented a couple of atheist attempts at describing what love is (from sources such as asktheatheist,com and daylightatheism). They proposed that love is an abstraction, it is a subjective feeling, it doesn’t have any physical manifestation, it speaks of an internal state of the mind – perhaps it isn’t rational? According to the atheist it seems that love is simply chemical reactions.

But is love simply chemical reactions? I wonder if this is too reductionistic?

Yet if we accept this, that love is simply chemical feelings, the outcome becomes unsatisfactory. Tepper went on to suggest that if love is only a feeling it leads to a consumerist attitude – ‘love’ becomes what I can get out of it. Hence relationships only last as we benefit from them. ‘Love’ only lasts as long as the feelings.

Yet humans hunger for more, humans want love to go beyond the transient. True love transcends the feelings and in some cases when we feel true ‘love’ we sense an aspect of the spiritual that atheism can’t explain.

Tepper argued that the best source of this ‘love’ is God. 1 John 4 describes ‘God as love’. She said that love comes in relationship (we can’t love being alone) and God is love because God is Trinity. She went on to propose that love is never self-centred, in fact love is sustained through self-sacrifice (we wouldn’t have many friends if love is all about me).[61]

The Christian website Good to those who love God declares:

Atheists believe in the evolutionary theory that everything a person does can be linked to either the drive to survive or the drive to reproduce. And they do mean everything. They believe that a child loves his mother because the mother is needed for survival; a man loves a woman because she can help him reproduce; people do good deeds because it keeps them from being killed by those who might otherwise dislike them; etc. Christians, on the other hand, do good deeds through the compassion that is taught in the Bible. Going to heaven is simply the icing on the cake.[62]

Atheism and romantic love

See: Atheism and romance and Atheism and marriage and Atheist marriages

British study finds atheists and scientists to be the least enthusiastic about Valentine's Day

Saint Valentine's Day cake.

An study done by the British website Freedating.co.uk reported about attitudes regarding Valentine's Day:

Both Tory and Labour voters are about as unromantic as you can get, beaten only by atheists and scientists...

So says our latest survey, which looked our users' attitudes to Valentine's Day - 6,878 of them in all.

We asked them to rate how important they thought the most romantic day of the year was, and combined their answer with anonymised data from their dating profiles.

Our statistician crunched the numbers, and pulled out any links between the kind of information you find in a typical dating profile, and whether or not those people were enthusiastic fans of Valentine's Day.

- Women overall are significantly more enthusiastic than men, nearly 10% so.

- A strong interest in any political party, other than the Liberal Democrats, is linked to a decreasing interest in this international day of romance.

- Whether or not men are religious is highly polarizing, with Christians and Catholics being amongst the most positive, and Atheists and Agnostics being amongst the most negative.[63]

Atheism and mental illness

See also: Atheism and mental illness

The prestigious Mayo Clinic found that that religious involvement and spirituality are associated with better physical health, mental health, health-related quality of life and other health outcomes.[64]

Atheism and mental illness is an increasingly important topic of study in light of the growing list of atheist shooters and serial killers.

The abstract for the journal article Health and Well-Being Among the Non-religious: Atheists, Agnostics, and No Preference Compared with Religious Group Members published in the Journal of Religion and Health indicates: "On dimensions related to psychological well-being, atheists and agnostics tended to have worse outcomes than either those with religious affiliation or those with no religious preference."[65]

Global News reported:

Children who are raised with religious or spiritual beliefs tend to have better mental health into their adulthood, a new study from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found.

According to the study’s findings, people who attended weekly religious services or prayed or meditated daily in their childhood reported greater life satisfaction in their 20s. People who grew up in a religious household also reported fewer symptoms of depression and lower rates of post-traumatic stress disorder.[66]

Atheists and negative emotions/thoughts:

Atheism and irrationality

See also: Atheism and irrationality and Atheists and unreasonableness and Atheism and beliefs

A common and legitimate criticism of the atheist worldview is that atheism is irrational.[67]

A common and legitimate criticism of the atheist worldview is that atheism is irrational.[68] In short, atheism is a fundamentally incoherent worldview with a number of inconsistencies.[69] See also: Atheism and critical thinking

Atheism, irrationality and open-mindedness

See also: Atheism and open-mindedness and Atheism and dogmatism and Atheism and intolerance and Atheism and groupthink

Making intelligent choices using critical thinking often requires open-mindedness and intellectual curiosity.[70]

Research indicates that atheists are less open-minded (see: Atheism and open-mindedness).

The atheist Luke Muehlhauser wrote about atheism and dogmatism:

...I am reminded every day that we atheists are not particularly more rational than believers... We, too, abandon reason and evidence to support opinions that just 'feel right' to us."

I was reminded of this a few hundred times during the week when I asked atheists to explain what was wrong with my [July 16, 2010] post. A few people gestured toward a kind of argument, but it was clear they were more interested to condemn me than they were to work through the logic of the ethical issues at play.

Most of my critics made little attempt to understand what I had said. Instead, they blatantly misrepresented my stated positions so that they could smear me.

Others admitted freely they didn’t care about the arguments involved, they just knew that they knew that they knew I was wrong... [71]

Atheistic worldview cannot account for the laws of logic

See also: Atheism and logic and Transcendental argument for the existence of God

The atheistic worldview cannot account for the laws of logic (See: Atheism and logic).[72]

Naturalism is incompatible with reason

See also: Atheism and reason and Causes of atheism and Atheist mindset

If naturalism is true, then we ought not to trust our capacity for reason for the human brain would be a byproduct of blind/unintelligent natural forces. [73] Naturalism and reason are incompatible.[74] Therefore, believing in naturalism is self-defeating.

Irreligion and superstition

The Wall Street Journal reported: "A comprehensive new study released by Baylor University yesterday, shows ...that the irreligious and the members of more liberal Protestant denominations, far from being resistant to superstition, tend to be much more likely to believe in the paranormal and in pseudoscience than evangelical Christians."[75]

See also: Irreligion and superstition

In September 2008, the Wall Street Journal reported:

The reality is that the New Atheist campaign, by discouraging religion, won't create a new group of intelligent, skeptical, enlightened beings. Far from it: It might actually encourage new levels of mass superstition. And that's not a conclusion to take on faith -- it's what the empirical data tell us.

"What Americans Really Believe," a comprehensive new study released by Baylor University yesterday, shows that traditional Christian religion greatly decreases belief in everything from the efficacy of palm readers to the usefulness of astrology. It also shows that the irreligious and the members of more liberal Protestant denominations, far from being resistant to superstition, tend to be much more likely to believe in the paranormal and in pseudoscience than evangelical Christians....

This is not a new finding. In his 1983 book "The Whys of a Philosophical Scrivener," skeptic and science writer Martin Gardner cited the decline of traditional religious belief among the better educated as one of the causes for an increase in pseudoscience, cults and superstition. He referenced a 1980 study published in the magazine Skeptical Inquirer that showed irreligious college students to be by far the most likely to embrace paranormal beliefs, while born-again Christian college students were the least likely.[76]

For more information, please see: Irreligion and superstition

Atheists commonly use logical fallacies in their arguments

Atheists commonly use logical fallacies in their arguments.[77]

One of the most common logical fallacies atheists, agnostics and evolutionists employ is the fallacy of exclusion. For example, the evolutionist Dr. Scott Todd, an immunologist at Kansas State University, wrote: "Even if all the data point to an intelligent designer, such an hypothesis is excluded from science because it is not naturalistic".[78] See: Methodological naturalism and Atheism and naturalistic intelligence

List of logical fallacies that atheists commonly commit: Atheism and logical fallacies

Atheism and critical thinking

See: Atheism and critical thinking

Atheists and unreasonableness

See: Atheists and unreasonableness

Atheism and dogmatism

See: Atheism and dogmatism

The abstract for the 2017 journal article Are atheists undogmatic? published in the journal Personality and Individual Differences states:

"Previous theory and evidence favor the idea that religious people tend to be dogmatic to some extent whereas non-religious people are undogmatic: the former firmly hold beliefs, some of which are implausible or even contrary to the real world evidence. We conducted a further critical investigation of this idea, distinguishing three aspects of rigidity: (1) self-reported dogmatism, defined as unjustified certainty vs. not standing for any beliefs, (2) intolerance of contradiction, measured through (low) endorsement of contradictory statements, and (3) low readiness to take a different from one's own perspective, measured through the myside bias technique. Non-believers, at least in Western countries where irreligion has become normative, should be lower on the first, but higher on the other two constructs. Data collected from three countries (UK, France, and Spain, total N = 788) and comparisons between Christians, atheists, and agnostics confirmed the expectations, with agnostics being overall similar to atheists."[79]

Psychology Today indicates:

Dogmatism has usually been related to low levels of openness to experience, the latter being an indicator of one's interest in new and non-traditional ideas. Dogmatism has mostly been studied in relation to religious beliefs but some recent research has looked at dogmatism among non-religious people. One surprising finding was that among self-identified atheists, higher levels of openness to experience were actually associated with greater dogmatism, contrary to the usual pattern. This suggests that the personality dimension openness to experience might not be a marker of open-mindedness as such but more of a preference for unconventional and complex ideas. Perhaps there needs to be a distinction made between humble versus arrogant forms of openness to experience.[80]

Atheism and arrogance

See: Atheism and arrogance and Atheism and presumptuousness

The atheist Friedrich Nietzsche wrote: "But now God is dead. You superior men, this God was your greatest danger. Only since he is in the grave, have you risen again. Only now comes the great noontide; only now the superior man will be – Lord!".[81]

The picture of Nietzsche above was taken in 1899. Nietzsche died in 1900.

The atheist Adam Lee wrote:

The atheist community has a lamentable tendency to make the same mistakes over and over...

Yet there are those who seem to believe that, just by becoming an atheist, they've proven their superior rationality and are qualified to opine on any subject. Worse, this attitude often comes with an arrogant certainty that they have no need to listen or learn from people who've actually lived through moral dilemmas that are merely abstract to them.[82]

The atheist activist Lee Moore said about the future of the atheist movement and its significant issues with in-fighting, "We're all kind of like self-centered and egocentrical atheists."[83] See also: Atheist factions and Atheism and social skills

One of the common and well-founded charges against atheists is their arrogance and presumptuousness.[84] See also: Atheism and arrogance and Atheism and presumptuousness

Atheism and intolerance

See also: Atheism and intolerance and Atheism and open-mindedness

Concerning atheism and open-mindedness, The Independent reported in an article entitled Atheists are less open-minded than religious people, study claims:

Religious people are more tolerant of different viewpoints than atheists, according to researchers at a Catholic university.

A study of 788 people in the UK, France and Spain concluded that atheists and agnostics think of themselves as more open-minded than those with faith, but are are actually less tolerant to differing opinions and ideas.

Religious believers "seem to better perceive and integrate diverging perspectives", according to psychology researchers at the private Catholic University of Louvain (UCL), Belgium's largest French-speaking university.

Filip Uzarevic, who co-wrote the paper, said his message was that "closed-mindedness is not necessarily found only among the religious".[85]

PsyPost indicates:

New research indicates that religious believers can be better at perceiving and integrating different perspectives than atheists in Western Europe.

“The main message of the study is that closed-mindedness is not necessarily found only among the religious,” the study’s corresponding author, Filip Uzarevic of the Catholic University of Louvain, told PsyPost.

The research was published April 27, 2017, in the peer-reviewed journal Personality and Individual Differences.

Atheists tended to show greater intolerance of contradiction, meaning when they were presented with two seemingly contradictory statements they rated one as very true and the other as very false. They also showed less propensity to be able to imagine arguments contrary to their own position and find them somewhat convincing.[86]

Atheism and gullibility

See: Atheism and gullibility

Atheism and foolishness

See also: Atheism and foolishness

The psalmist David wrote: "The fool says in his heart, 'There is no God.'" - Psalms 14:1 (ESV)

Below are some resources on atheism and foolishness.

Articles:

Videos:

The fool says in his heart, "There is no God."

Atheism and incoherency

See: Atheism and incoherency

Atheism, divorce and its effect on children

See: Atheism, divorce and its effect on children

MedcineNet.com's article What are the effects of single parenting on a child? notes:

Developmental Problems

Many developmental problems for children of single parents revolve around their progress in school. They tend to get lower grades, and their dropout rate is higher than their counterparts from two-parent families.

Single parents are more likely to work more hours to make ends meet. They often don't have enough time to assist the child with their schoolwork. Children who have to work to help pay expenses have less time to focus on their schoolwork.

Economic Hardships

Plentiful economic resources allow parents to meet their children's economic needs. When there are two parents in the home, they can pool resources and are less likely to struggle with insufficient income. Single-parent families are more likely to experience financial problems because they only have one earner. Single-parent children can feel frightened, stressed, and frustrated by the difference between their lives and their friends'.

Psychological Effects

Children of single parents are more prone to various psychiatric illnesses, alcohol abuse, and suicide attempts than children from homes with two parents. One of the common reasons for single parenting is divorce. It's not uncommon for children to be exposed and even drawn to the conflicts between the parents during and even after divorce, which may leave children feeling lonely, abandoned, and even guilty.

Single parents are more likely to experience disruptions such as moves and remarriage. Major changes can affect the children. Kids do well in a controlled environment. Any emotional turmoil and uncertainty may lead to increased psychological problems.[87]

Global News reported:

Children who are raised with religious or spiritual beliefs tend to have better mental health into their adulthood, a new study from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found.

According to the study’s findings, people who attended weekly religious services or prayed or meditated daily in their childhood reported greater life satisfaction in their 20s. People who grew up in a religious household also reported fewer symptoms of depression and lower rates of post-traumatic stress disorder.[88]

See also

External links

Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Post Scriptum to Original Article, "Atheism and Divorce.". Atheism Exposed (2008).
  2. https://creation.com/atheism
  3. https://creation.com/atheism
  4. Is the divorce rate among Christians truly the same as among non-Christians?. GotQuestions.org.
  5. The Irrational Atheist: Dissecting the Unholy Trinity of Dawkins, Harris, And Hitchens by Theodore Beale (Vox Day), ASIN: ‎ 1933771364, Publisher: BenBella Books (March 11, 2008)
  6. Christian Philosopher Explores Causes of Atheism
  7. [The Relationship between Dysfunctional Attitudes and Communication Skills of Women with an Addicted Husband on the Verge of Divorce] by Ghodratollah Rajabizadeh, Zohre Rajabizadeh, Solmaz Shokouhi Moghadam, and Zahra Vafadoost, Addiction and Health. 2019 Jan; 11(1): 51–57. doi: 10.22122/ahj.v11i1.221
  8. Unrealistic Expectations About Love and Marriage, Mentalhelp.net
  9. Hazardous alcohol drinking in the former Soviet Union: a cross-sectional study of eight countries
  10. Alcoholism in the Soviet Union
  11. The Doubled-Edged Sword of Religion and Alcoholism
  12. Practical Outcomes Replace Biblical Principles As the Moral Standard
  13. The Link Between Alcoholism and Divorce
  14. Believers Consume Fewer Drugs Than Atheists, Christian Post, By Jim Denison, Christian Post Columnist, October 9, 2013|9:47 am
  15. Believers consume fewer drugs than atheists, Science Daily, Date:October 3, 2013, Source: Schweizerischer Nationalfonds zur Foerderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung]
  16. Multiple references:
  17. Believers consume fewer drugs than atheists, Science Daily, Date:October 3, 2013, Source: Schweizerischer Nationalfonds zur Foerderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung]
  18. Believers Consume Fewer Drugs Than Atheists, Christian Post, By Jim Denison, Christian Post Columnist, October 9, 2013|9:47 am
  19. Believers Consume Fewer Drugs Than Atheists, Christian Post, By Jim Denison, Christian Post Columnist, October 9, 2013|9:47 am
  20. New Study Finds High Correlation Between Lack of Religion and Marijuana Use
  21. New Study Finds High Correlation Between Lack of Religion and Marijuana Use
  22. Schweizerischer Nationalfonds zur Foerderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung [Swiss National Science Foundation] (October 3, 2013). "Believers consume fewer drugs than atheists". Science Daily website/Science News. Retrieved on May 23, 2015.
  23. Ask the Brains, Scientific American, Dec 23, 2011
  24. Amotivational Syndrome: Definition & Explanation, Study.com
  25. The Social Organization of Sexuality: Sexual Practices in the United States By Edward O. Laumann, John H. Gagnon, Robert T. Michael, Stuart Michaels, page 115
  26. 26.0 26.1 Why Are Christians Having Better Sex Than the Rest of Us? by Tucker Carlson, The Daily Beast, November 11, 25, 2008
  27. Christian Women Have More Sexual Fun, Relationship Center in Springfield Missouri
  28. No Sex Please, We're Atheists by Ben Freeland, Heavy.com
  29. The Social Organization of Sexuality: Sexual Practices in the United States By Edward O. Laumann, John H. Gagnon, Robert T. Michael, Stuart Michaels, page 114
  30. The Atheism Gap By Stephen L. Carter, BloombergView, Mar 27, 2015 4:26 PM EDT
  31. How Many Highly Religious Conservative Republicans Are There?, Gallup Organization statistics
  32. More Republicans Satisfied With Sex Lives Than Democrats, ABC News
  33. 97% of the world's population growth is taking place in the developing world, where 95% of people are religious, Tuesday, April 30, 2013
  34. 36.0 36.1 Atheist: A dying breed as nature favours faithful
  35. Atheism is doomed: the contraceptive Pill is secularism's cyanide tablet, The Telegraph, By Ed West. Last updated: March 15th, 2010
  36. Bainbridge, William (2005). "Atheism" (PDF). Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on Religion. 1 (Article 2): 1–26.
  37. Poisoning of a movement by PZ Myers
  38. The 4 Communication Styles That Lead To Divorce With 90% Accuracy by Sandra Aponte, MA, RMHCI
  39. How Forgiveness Can Transform Your Marriage by Terry Gaspard, MSW, LICSW
  40. The Triumph of the Gospel of Love by Monk Themistocles (Adamopoulo)
  41. [http://www.amcf-int.org/resources/other/love.htm LOVE AND FORGIVENESS. Extracts from a talk given by Reverend David Watson at the 1980 AMCF World Conference
  42. How to Help Prevent Your Child from Becoming an Atheist by Joe Carter
  43. It’s Past Time for Atheism to Grow Up by Neil Carter
  44. Idolatry of the atheist kind is just as repellent as any other by PZ Myers
  45. Indian J Psychiatry. 2009 Apr-Jun; 51(2): 153–156. doi: 10.4103/0019-5545.49459, PMCID: PMC2755173, Forgiveness: A note for psychiatrists by Prakash Gangdev
  46. How to Help Prevent Your Child from Becoming an Atheist by Joe Carter
  47. Professor John Lennox on why atheists are missing the target by Miriam Diez Bosch
  48. Christian Philosopher Explores Causes of Atheism
  49. doi: 10.1177/1077801207308259 Violence Against Women, Race/Ethnicity, Religious Involvement, and Domestic Violence, November 2007 vol. 13 no. 11 1094-1112
  50. doi: 10.1177/1077801207308259 Violence Against Women, Race/Ethnicity, Religious Involvement, and Domestic Violence, November 2007 vol. 13 no. 11 1094-1112
  51. doi: 10.1177/1077801207308259 Violence Against Women, Race/Ethnicity, Religious Involvement, and Domestic Violence, November 2007 vol. 13 no. 11 1094-1112
  52. Why Religion Matters Even More: The Impact of Religious Practice on Social Stability By Patrick F. Fagan, Ph.D., Heritage Center website
  53. Multiple references:
  54. How do atheists define love? by Dr. Taylor Marshall
  55. What is love? how materialist atheism fails to have a satisfactory answer, July 9, 2014
  56. How do atheists define love? by Dr. Taylor Marshall
  57. What is love? how materialist atheism fails to have a satisfactory answer, July 9, 2014
  58. How do atheists define love? by Dr. Taylor Marshall
  59. What is love? how materialist atheism fails to have a satisfactory answer, July 9, 2014
  60. ATHEISM'S THIRTEEN BIGGEST FLAWS
  61. The Politics of Valentine's Day: Survey reveals differing attitudes to Valentine's Day, based on political persuasion
  62. Mueller, Dr. Paul S. et al. (December 2001). "Religious involvement, spirituality, and medicine: implications for clinical practice". Mayo Clinic Proceedings vol. 76:12, pp. 1225-1235. Retrieved from Mayo Clinic Proceedings website on July 20, 2014.
  63. Health and Well-Being Among the Non-religious: Atheists, Agnostics, and No Preference Compared with Religious Group Members by Hayward RD, Krause N, Ironson G, Hill PC, Emmons R., Journal of Religion and Health, 2016 Jun;55(3):1024-1037. doi: 10.1007/s10943-015-0179-2.
  64. Religion can help improve children’s mental health, new study finds, Global News, 2018
  65. Atheism by Matt Slick
  66. Atheism by Matt Slick
  67. Eleven common traits of highly intelligent people by Shana Lebowicz, The Independent, Friday 16 December 2016 18:24
  68. Atheism and Dogmatism by Luke Muehlhauser] at Commonsenseatheism.com
  69. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122178219865054585.html
  70. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122178219865054585.html
  71. https://creation.com/a-designer-is-unscientificeven-if-all-the-evidence-supports-one
  72. Are atheists undogmatic?, Personality and Individual Differences, Filip Uzarevica, Vassilis Sarogloua, Magali Clobert, Volume 116, 1 October 2017, Pages 164-170
  73. Dogmatism and Openness to Experience in the Non-Religious, Psychology Today, 2013
  74. Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, In Michael Curtis (Ed.) The Great Political Theories, Vol. 2 (New York: Avon Books, 1962, PP. 261-262). Cited in, Christopher, J.R., G.G, Wittet, Modern Western Civilization. Toronto: Oxford University Press, 1991, Pages 232, 233
  75. [4 Things the Atheist Movement Has Done Badly (and How to Do Them Better)] by Adam Lee, Alternet
  76. Lee Moore and Steve Shives Talk About the Future of the Atheist Movement, quote comes 29 minute and 24 seconds into the video
  77. Atheists are less open-minded than religious people, study claims, The Independent, 2017
  78. Study finds the nonreligious can be more close-minded than the religious By ERIC W. DOLAN, PsyPost June 23, 2017
  79. What are the effects of single parenting on a child?, MedcineNet.com
  80. Religion can help improve children’s mental health, new study finds, Global News, 2018