Survey: Americans Don`t Know About Religion

Submitted by: PierreJeanFR 6 years ago
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/us_rel_religious_literacy_poll;_ylt=Ajm5DDg6JP_Nfwv10a8ogADF1LJ_;_ylu=X3oDMTNjcGx0czE3BGFzc2V0Ay9zL2FwL3VzX3JlbF9yZWxpZ2lvdXNfbGl0ZXJhY3lfcG9sbARjY29kZQNtcF9lY184XzEwBGNwb3MDMwRwb3MDMwRzZWMDeW5fdG9wX3N0b3JpZXMEc2xrA3N1cnZleWFtZXJpYw--

New survey of Americans" knowledge of religion found that atheists, agnostics, Jews and Mormons outperformed all others.
There are 121 comments:
Male 5,413
The less people know about religion, the better
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Male 65
I am very, very anti-religion.. scored 14/15, know your enemy!
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Male 1,299
There are very intelligent people that believe in religion/"have faith" and very intelligent people that do not. However, I think that most people without faith recognize that historically organized religion has done more harm than good in the world (besides the often cited crusades Martin Luther the father of the protestant reformation was a vocal anti-semite and extremely influencial on Hitlers viewpoints, which were ultimately reflected in his later policies and actions, as another example of religion being responsible for injustice and destruction.) It is this realization, this epiphany that typically suggests to these people that they examine and question their faith and seek alternatives. Ultimately, however, once faith is lost it is difficult to believe in an alternative entirely, and so they always question all religions and creeds from tat point on, which inherently means learning and researching other faiths, something not as present in those never lost their given
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Male 97
Yeah, 13/15! 87%, better than 93% of ya`ll!
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Male 97
That`s called studying shows. Americans need to take more interest in religion. It`s in our roots and shouldn`t be lost.
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Male 1,834
lame
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Female 83
It`s because many atheists actually retain and think about the religions and the religious beliefs, while many people of a certain religion just listen to and learn to recite the information they hear at church.
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Male 5,608
[quote]"1. In What country did Muhammed see Ala?
2. What is Christmas?
3. In the Quran, who leads so and so to place?
4. What day is the Sabbath? "[/quote]

1) Saudi Arabia.
2) A combination of holidays from the various religions which Christianity displaced, in particular, Winter Solstice, a celebration of the death of one year and the birth of the next, renamed as a period to celebrate the birth of Christ.
If one combines the details from the stories in a bible and tests them against a period of stellar body alignment along with Roman tax collection (every 12 years) which is likely why Jesus` parents were traveling north, he was most likely born on August 20th, 6 B.C.E.
3)Which "so and so" would you like?
4)Saturday (beginning on Friday at dusk.) I think the Jewish calendar was comprised of 10 months in 6 day weeks (which seems to indicate some editing of the creation story.)
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Male 2,229
Not a surprise
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Male 3,915
80%....i knew more about other religions than i did about Christianity...

probably because the Christian questions were WAY more specific than the other religion questions....

...lets switch it around and take the test...

1. In What country did Muhammed see Ala?

2. What is Christmas?

3. In the Quran, who leads so and so to place?

4. What day is the Sabbath?

see my point?
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Male 4,547
Crakr:

I`m not *seriously* using D&D to back up my logic, but using it yes. :)

I think a practical solution would be what the boy scouts did. They had a similar problem (for those of you too young to remember), they put in a simple policy of only dealing with children when 2 adults were present.

Cut problem by 98% or something silly. Massive success.
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Male 17,512
Baal: Please tell me you aren`t using D&D to back up your logic.
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Male 17,512
Baal: I believe the solution for the Catholic church would be to allow priests to marry (Man and Woman only). I do believe it would scare the `pedos` away, Make them feel unwelcome.
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Male 4,547
And I actually think IQ is important when talking about intelligence.

I also however think it`s important that what you`re discussing is Int not Wis. Why do you think Wis is used for Divine Spells?
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Male 17,512
Btw, I got the Johnathan Edwards question correct, I actually erred on the question of whether or not it was legal to read from the bible in school.
Which means I actually answered, No they couldn`t.

So for all the people that accused me of wanting religion in schools, Bite me!
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Male 4,547
Just a quick example on my last point:

The Vatican Sex scandal.

Atheists: Less religion!
Vatican: Our priests should be more religious and follow the tenets better.

Overall reasoning for both: Get rid of Child Abuse.

Same can be said for almost all religious topics that come up like this.

All could be solved by following all the rules and not just some of the rules. Atheists argue taking away religion takes away the "some of the rules" they are following. Theists argue adding "the rest of the rules" fixes the problem in the first place.
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Male 17,512
davymid: As I`ve stated before, There are many different kinds of `intelligence`. Testing people on paper doesn`t give a clear enough picture of overall intelligence.

There are PHDs that don`t know how to change the oil in their car. Then there are artistic geniuses that may not score well on tests but create exquisite things/music.

To dismiss these people as unintelligent, Because of a paper or even verbal test, Is stupid.
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Male 4,547
14/15. Muslim. I`ve never heard of Jonathan Edwards.

I would argue that in the UK, religious people know more about religion. In Saudi Arabia Christians know more about religion than Muslims. In the Vatican non Catholics know more. Etc.

The reason I know so much about religion is I`m used to living in places where I`m the minority, and therefore used to defending and therefore understanding my beliefs.

I`m fairly sure Atheists in the USSR will perform poorly compared to the religious on religious topics. This is borne out by their "other findings" in the full report:

"While people with a high level of religious commitment do better than average on the religion questions".

There`s a difference between association and commitment. I think that`s why people of faith often talk of needing "more religion" and atheists "less".

It`s the same goals usually at stake.
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Female 322
T-Marly - no, I meant what a teacher teaches ABOUT Catholicism - the catechism (ah, I got it there) of the Catholic Church.
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Male 12,138
In a separate study, conducted by the University of Texas, "Religious Believers as a group were found to be significantly less intelligent and more authoritarian than religious Skeptics" Source 2
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Male 12,138
kw112 "i cant say that its becuase educated people are atheists. im sure if someone made a chart or something it would be somewhere in the middle where religious and non-religious people stand on eduaction."

There have been some studies on this subject. A recent study by a University in Denmark showed that atheists were most intelligent, scoring 2 IQ points higher than agnostics, 4 IQ points higher than liberal religious people, and a full 6 IQ points higher than religious conservatives, across the poll. Source.
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Male 228
@Happy_Pandas

Check out deism. It`s the belief in God, minus all the weird guys telling you that god told them to tell you to give them money.
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Male 1,107
13/15....Not bad for someone who`s only attended church like 10 times.
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Male 2,402
What a suprise from the same who give you Creationism as real science. Freaking EV`s are retards.
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Male 28
Today was Wodan`s Day so I was out worshiping Wodan. After all it is Wednesday.
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Male 65
cause americans are dumb....
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Female 307
And.. I wouldn`t even know what religion I`d fall under. Maybe white mainline Protestant or nothing in particular, since I do believe in the basics of Christianity (heaven, hell, Jesus and God) but I don`t agree with some stuff in it.. :P Confusing.
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Female 798
@kw112 I`m pretty sure they said they controlled for education which would mean level of education in general doesn`t explain the results
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Female 307
Took this right when it came out, thanks to my dad, before reading the article and I got 15/15.. Honestly, this was really basic knowledge, or so I thought.. kinda wished it was longer.
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Male 257
i know that my thing says 18-29 but thats cz this is my brother`s account (19) and im not gonna change it
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Male 257
12/15. meh thats alright for a 14 year old, right?
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Male 448
15/15, yet another thing I can rub in the bible bangers` faces.
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Male 5,190
I got 5/15 to be honest. >.> ouch.
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Male 172
"I believe the main purpose was for Christians to get together and have communion to be united as one church body and remember Christ`s sacrifice for us. Not as the `zombie like` ritual I`ve heard atheists claim it to be. "

The reasons for doing something don`t make it any less than what it naturally is.
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Female 1,264
@Volsunga
"Nobody asks "Why are you Christian" or "Why are you Hindu" because they already know that its because you were brought up as such."

Yes and no. Some atheists are brought up as such and never question it. Some Christians are brought up as such, but ultimately stay because they question and decide. It`s not about being religious or non-religious. It`s about being a sentient being and questioning yourself and everything else.
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Female 1,264
15/15. It`s not about religion, it`s about culture.
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Male 17,512
Angilion: Not all Christians believe in transubstantiation, Many do believe it`s symbolic.
Backing this belief up is of the phrasing "..do this in remembrance of me", and not "..do this because it is me". Baptists even drink grape juice instead of wine, Because they abstain from alcohol.

I believe the main purpose was for Christians to get together and have communion to be united as one church body and remember Christ`s sacrifice for us. Not as the `zombie like` ritual I`ve heard atheists claim it to be.
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Male 12,365
[quote]Really? Then that`s drating disgusting that people would still eat it. I was always taught it just symbolized it.[/quote]

It`s absolutely taught as a real thing, not a symbol. The transubstantiation has been doctrine since the earliest recorded days of the Christian church (i.e. when there was only one, after it killed off the other versions of Christianity and before it splintered into the current dozens).

They really mean it and they can point to passages in their bible to support it. Not only that, they can point to passages in their bible saying that it caused people to turn away from Christianity and Jesus continued it anyway, i.e. that he must have meant it (John 6, although John`s stuff is rather odd).
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Male 1,548
Atheist 14/15, missed the "great awakening" one.

@fatninja01
Its not that you need reasons to be an atheist, its because the first thing that comes out of anyone`s mouth after hearing that you`re an atheist is "explain yourself". Nobody asks "Why are you Christian" or "Why are you Hindu" because they already know that its because you were brought up as such.
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Female 536
14/15 and I`m agnostic.
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Male 12,365
Bah, 14 right. The question about the sabbath caught me out with one key word I didn`t pay enough attention to. I wasn`t sure about the USA legal position on schools, but I went on what seemed to me to be most consistent with the USA constitution.

I`m surprised atheists didn`t do better than theists in every religion. Most atheists I know are atheists because they know about religions and none of the questions are about precise details that only a theist of that religion is likely to know.
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Female 2,352
13/15. Damn missed the jewish sabbath thing and the thing about reading the bible in class.
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Female 1,515
Surprisingly I got 15/15. The questions really weren`t that difficult, but did have a wide range. I went to Catholic school and we took a World`s religions course so that`s how I knew most of them, besides being raised with an extremely religious Catholic step-mom (who is now atheist) and attending dance classes at the Jewish community center (i.e. most of my friends were Jewish). I guess I would classify myself as Agnostic, but I don`t really think I fit that label completely. Physics is most of my religion xD
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Male 5,608
15/15 Atheist

[quote]"Athiests are more educated on other religions because they need reasons to be a Athiest"[/quote]
I suspect that other atheists, like myself, looked around and said: "Oh! All of these are equally filled with shi#!!!
I choose science."
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Male 3,482
I got 13/15. I missed the Job question completely, and forgot that technicality about the Jewish Sabbath. I knew it, it just slipped my mind when I answered the question.

[quote]Wow they didn`t even know Martin Luther? Really? Wow.[/quote]
This is what I thought too, lol. We`re on a wavelength recently. Seriously, though, I was taught that in my freshman World History class... I FAILED that class, had a horrible teacher, and still knew it.

@auburnjunky

That was probably one of the dumbest and most irrelevant comments I`ve ever seen...
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Male 25,416
Athiests are more educated on other religions because they need reasons to be a Athiest
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Male 310
"The bread and wine actually become the body and blood of Jesus Christ."

Really? Then that`s drating disgusting that people would still eat it. I was always taught it just symbolized it.
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Male 678
I would say the majority of "Americans" dont know where Iraq or Pakistan is. Let alone the middle and last name of there neighbor so what hope do they have of knowing their own faith.
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Male 602
Dax, since you qausi asked, I believe it is Catholicism.

And yes most Muslims I have met know that Isa (Jesus) and Musa (Moses) are in the line of prophets, along with Isma`il (Ishmael), Ibrahim (Abraham). They believe that Mohammed was the last in the line of prophets from god, from Adam all the way down. The flip side of that is not very many Christians know it.

Not only that, but in the end times Jesus and Mohammed will come down and wonder powers unite to kick ass all over the world.

Jews had God first, but they screwed up, and so he brings out Jesus, and the Jews kill him. Then the Christians come along and say that Jesus was not a prophet, but God himself, and God, being a jealous god who says not to worship idols (like...Catholicism and their Saints) and to worship no other god but him sends Mohammed to clear things up once and for all. Then God just gave up and said screw it, I will vacuum them all up later.
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Male 678
this is really not surprising
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Male 2,549
14/15 I was baptized Greek Orthodox, raised Atheist, practiced a path of Tibetan Buddhism, discovered my Jewish heritage and practiced that for a long time before becoming disillusioned by everything...

Where`s my category?!
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Male 172
@DuckBoy87

"I would disagree with you, yanging. Religion is basically a set of beliefs. The set of beliefs that atheism has is that of a belief that there is no higher power.
Now atheism isn`t an organized religion, but still falls into the same category as religion."

No, it does not. This is one of those falsehoods that atheism can`t seem to shake. If your definition were correct, a christian would be an atheist to every other religion, as they dont believe in allah, or thor, or zeus, or odin etc. etc.

Atheism is simply a non-belief; it is not a religion, it is a label.
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Male 15,510
That is yesterdays news
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Female 243
and i agree with Trojan. this really isnt suprising. the more educated a person is the more they will know about different religions (through social science, history, and literature classes). as far as being an athiest or a jew, catholic etc. i cant say that its becuase educated people are atheists. im sure if someone made a chart or something it would be somewhere in the middle where religious and non-religious people stand on eduaction.
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Female 243
if i hadnt read the article first i wouldnt have been to sure about the law about a teacher reading out of a holy book as an example of literature. other than that 13/15. atheist.
im glad to know that lit. teachers can read out of holy books as an example of literature. despite being athiest i still agree that holy books have some really good symbolism and lessons in them.
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Male 240
13/15 here. Agnostic. Although I`m not surprised at the results. It`s a lot like tea baggers and their knowledge of politics. Most folks just regurgitate what they have been told without actually understanding what they are saying.

Sadly, I`m becoming quite cynical about Humans in general... :(
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Male 511
And this study is surprising... how?
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Female 3,001
14/15, got the great awakening one wrong... but these questions are a tad random, I don`t think it means you don`t know anything about religion if you can`t answer them.
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Male 12,138
14/15, atheist (though former hardcore Christian).
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Female 322
I worked with a lot of Roman Catholics. Not one of them, even someone who TAUGHT cathecism, (sp. again, sorry) knew what the `Immaculate Conception` referred to, and it a major tenant of their faith.
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Male 510
14/15 apathetic jew. missed the billy graham question
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Male 167
I got 13, gotta say, since I have been to any sort of religious temple about 3 times in my whole life, it is quite sad how stupid other people must be
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Male 94
The theology of transubstantiation is a bit confusing though since it deals with the philosophical understanding of substance regardless of the physical nature or observable "accidents". People are just organic molecules and thus have their properties. A piece of the human has the accident of many organic piles but the substance is human. Its party of why people value life and corpses.
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Female 857
I got 14 out of 15 (guessed at US Law)....I`m quite shocked that I had all that in my mental roladex.
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Male 505
Oh and everything i know about the Mormons comes from South park =[
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Male 505
DuckBoy87:

I`d have to disagree with you. I`d say, for me, atheism is the rejection of a higher power. I`ll admit that it is a belief, as in "i don`t believe in God" but to classify it as a religion? No, i don`t think so.

Religion

None of those really apply to my take on being an Atheist.
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Male 1,021
So much hate, so little understanding. Do muslims know that Jesus and Moses are some of their prophets? Do chriostiansd know that Jesus was Jewish? Do Jews kmow that Mormans believe they are direct descendants of the House of Israel? Do atheist know their freedom comes from others who had gave it because they believe it to be a divine right? Can we just get along and respect each other. That is what every religion doctorine states in so many words anyway.
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Male 509
HA! White Baptist, 80%. Take that, Jews and your 65%!
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Male 17,512
They said they asked 32 questions and their online poll only had 15. The survey size was rather small and I`m beginning to wonder who and where they called.
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Male 17,512
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Male 4,807
14/15. woah I should become a preacher.
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Male 1,184
Oops, I meant to say I missed 1, 3 and 4, not 2, 3 and 4.
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Female 2,927
i have an excuse, i went through catholic school and im still repressing the trauma.
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Male 1,184
"This is probably because my country is smaller and has more variety in religion wherever you are, whereas the US has many regions of just one dominant religion."

Depends if you consider the different sects of Christianity to be different religions.

Also, there are a few areas that are predominately Christian and Muslim, not just Christian.
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Male 6,694
Man Im thirsty.
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Male 1,184
I got 12 out of 15.

Assuming the questions are always in the same order, I missed 2, 3 and 4.

(I am atheist btw.)
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Female 798
@5cats, I guess I am :)

@Kegomatix, surveying 4,000 Americans is definitely enough to get a fair representation. I won`t go into all the details of why that is enough but as long as it was a random sample of the entire U.S. and they include the margins of error (which I believe the article said it was 2.5) these results are very valid. Surveying more is just a waste of time and money because you will only have very slight changes in the information that are negligible.
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Female 347
I agree with GhettoNinja. I`m agnostic, but I learned a little first before I made that decision, and I didn`t just stick to what I was brought up as. If you`re happy with your current faith, why bother learning about any others? I`m sure if they had a quiz for each respective genre they`d all do pretty well in their own.

I got 12 right.
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Male 1,184
Oh, some other ones are "res ligare," thing which links (not necessarily heaven to earth, but people with similar beliefs), "res legore," thing which reads, similar to "re legore," "re ligere," meaning "reloving," i.e., rediscovering love, or "res ligere," (belief in) something which loves (perfectly) [God].
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Female 1,101
@Duckboy87 no atheism is not a religion, because it is only one belief not a belief system. It also does not involve supernatural forces or beings which are included in many solid definitions of religion.

Excerpt from Dictionary.com`s definition of Religion, "a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, esp. when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances"
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Male 1,184
Duck:

That is one interpretation of religion. Common beliefs as to the etymology of "religion" are that religion can be either "re ligare" - relinking, of heaven to earth - or "re legore" - rereading, of life as a whole.
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Male 2,419
@kegomatix
k, you go survey EVERYBODY and we`ll wait for your answers
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Male 4,680
The only thing I hate more than a bigoted theist is a bigoted atheist.
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Male 153
pmarren needs a new post about cats...we`re losing him
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Male 5,194
"what century the Mormon religion was founded"

Yeah, there`s a real important fact to commit brain cells to. Right up there with Linsey Lohan`s rehab schedule.
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Male 1,341
Auburnjunky:
Yes, but whose to say that one group of 45 Asian Americans will have the exact same opinions and knowledge as the next group of 45? Even if the difference is just 5 or so people with differing opinions over the span of millions, thats going to change the results considerably compared to just surveying 45 and saying that accounts for all Asian Americans.
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Male 3,413
I would disagree with you, yanging. Religion is basically a set of beliefs. The set of beliefs that atheism has is that of a belief that there is no higher power.
Now atheism isn`t an organized religion, but still falls into the same category as religion.
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Male 172
"@kegomatix:

To get an accurate cross section of our country, You would only have to ask:

790 Caucasians
154 Hispanics
128 African Americans
45 Asians Americans
10 Native and Alaskan Americans
17 Pacific Islanders
2 Multiracial"

It would also have to be proportional to their distribution across the country.
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Male 4,594
I sometimes eat my boogers.
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Male 10,339
@kegomatix:

To get an accurate cross section of our country, You would only have to ask:

790 Caucasians
154 Hispanics
128 African Americans
45 Asians Americans
10 Native and Alaskan Americans
17 Pacific Islanders
2 Multiracial
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Male 92
How can they say that about all Americans when the sample size was only 3,412 people? Just hit the southern states and you`ll see how wrong that article is.
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Male 172
@auburnjunky

I take your silence as a recognition of your erroneous conclusion.
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Female 387
Yay, 15/15 and I`m a Christian! (Admittedly from the UK, not America)

This is probably because my country is smaller and has more variety in religion wherever you are, whereas the US has many regions of just one dominant religion.
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Male 1,341
Completely retarded and proves nothing. They surveyed less than 4000 people, so they probably should have said "Small group of Americans don`t know much about religion."
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Male 10,339
@Yanging:

......
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Male 172
"turns out I don`t know the basic tenets of atheism"

Can`t tell if you`re trolling or not, but I`ll bite.

Atheism is not a religion, it is a lack thereof. It is the non-belief in a higher power. That`s it; nothing more, nothing less.
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Male 172
"@madest:

It is said that those who are blind have all other senses heightened.

Some of us may have blind faith, but let`s look at what else is blind.

Love. Color. Freedom.

Be kind to each other."

Case of special pleading. You`re using 2 forms of the word blind. One is referring to lack of sight (e.g. one of your senses) and the other is referring to ignorance. Comparing the two is illogical and thus your premise is invalidated, forming an incorrect conclusion.
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Female 3,574
I got 13 out of 15 wooo
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Male 172
15/15 correct.

Yay for knowledge.
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Male 2,850
"Some of us may have blind faith, but let`s look at what else is blind."

Worms are also blind.
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Female 803
@auburnjunky, love, color, and freedom all exist in some way shape or form.
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Male 36,410
Justice is supposed to be blind as well, eh?

@rainbowfarts - you sound like me, a Deist!
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Male 36,410
[quote]More than half of Protestants could not identify Martin Luther...[/quote]
Well THAT`s pretty amazing right there!
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Female 94
awesome I got 11 out of 15 pretty nice for someone who doesn`t get involved in any religion
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Male 567
I got 14 of 15 (missed the last one), It always amazes me when I get into discussions with people who will "prove" to me god exists, how little they know of what they profess to believe in.
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Male 959
The reason so few Catholics understand transubstantiation (their belief that the bread and wine actually turns into Christ`s body and blood during the blessing of the Eucharist) is because it is utter utter nonsense, and so easily disproved, that they don`t teach it to Catholics, and keep it quiet. Nothing pushes people away from Catholicism quicker. Except maybe the nonce priests and hypocritical richness of the church.
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Male 10,339
@madest:

It is said that those who are blind have all other senses heightened.

Some of us may have blind faith, but let`s look at what else is blind.

Love. Color. Freedom.

Be kind to each other.
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Male 127
To quote Deaner from Fubar 2:
Knowledge of Non-Knowledge is Power!
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Male 406
Just more hypocrisy from the organized religious. Nothing new here.
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Female 798
Took the quiz and got 13 out of 15 (one was a technicality though about Jewish sabbath so whatever). I`m not atheist or agnostic. Actually, if there is a title for my religion, I do not know it. I agree with GhettoNinja because I`ve done a lot of my own research it`s just that my search yielded this weird belief in God instead of a lack of it.
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Female 3,574
Wow they didn`t even know Martin Luther? Really? Wow.
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Male 17
totally ignored Islam :P
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Male 808
Isnt`t that awesome, proves that the people that know most about religion tend to be the ones that don`t even believe in it
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Female 9,402
I read the article a few days ago and found it sad. If you are going to be religious, at least know what are you getting into.
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Female 158
religion flame war in 3...2...1...
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Male 639
Agnostic btw
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Male 639
Took it yesterday on Huffpost and got 100% on first try.
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Male 560
Atheist FTW!
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Male 886
Generally speaking, agnostics and atheists are typically going to know more than your average person of faith.


I would say this is because these are the people that searched for answers and tried to educate themselves in their search for spirituality.
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Male 2,592
turns out I don`t know the basic tenets of atheism
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Male 1,360
Link: Survey: Americans Don`t Know About Religion [Rate Link] - New survey of Americans` knowledge of religion found that atheists, agnostics, Jews and Mormons outperformed all others.
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