A new survey by Pew Forum regarding religious knowledge has come out to prove that atheists and agnostics are most informed about religion, whilst people who actually practice an organized religion are lacking in religious knowledge. According to Pew Forum “”On average, Americans correctly answer 16 of the 32 religious knowledge questions on the survey. Atheists and agnostics average 20.9 … Jews and Mormons do about as well, averaging 20.5 and 20.3 correct answers”.
It is quite interesting that those practicing knew the least about their own religion. Four out of ten Catholics had no idea that the eating and drinking of bread and wine for communion represented the blood and body of Christ. In all fairness, 80% knew that Mother Theresa was Catholic.
If anything this survey reaffirms many of my suspicions regarding people who practice religion without question. There are people who truly believe, live and practice their said religion, I find this to be respectable and even admirable. On the flip side of the coin, I often find that many people purely ‘believe’ and are adamant about something they aren’t even educated about. These people uphold their staunch belief in their religion due to family traditions and nothing more. I find this disturbing at best.
It is of my opinion that people should find spirituality on their own and not necessarily be dictated to by anyone else. In the end, we are all worshiping or believe in the same higher power. The difference is, we interpret this higher power as different things and follow different doctrines. I believe this viewpoint is empowering, allows for tolerance and ideally if everyone thought this way, perhaps we could end all of these wars waged in the name of religion both in past and present. We can believe in ‘God’, ‘Allah’, ‘Yahweh’, ‘Ganesha’ or whatever deity that tickles our fancy, but in the end, killing is completely and utterly frowned on by all of them; it is ironic that some believe it is ok to kill in the spirit of religion or that they are the ‘chosen ones’. At least now we know why people are killing in the name of religion: they don’t even know what their religious scriptures are about.
For the full report and more interesting tidbits from this survey, click below: