Is the south getting more religious or am I just getting paranoid?
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
18-07-2011, 07:42 AM
RE: Is the south getting more religious or am I just getting paranoid?
As to polarization....
Doesn't that mean two extremes?
What we seem to have here is one extreme, stomping on everybody else, setting fire to straw-men. The American Left is protesting quietly behind a chain-link fence; the Labor movement is cut off at the knees; the few secular intellectual voices are demonized and shouted down (and two of them are English, fcs!) There is no balance, no ballast.

The scariest part of this trend, to me, is the increasing emotionalism. Everybody cries on camera, all the time, about every-damn-thing. I believe it's part of a campaign against reason and self-discipline and the mature evaluation of in-put. Emotion is so easy to manipulate, to push over into hysteria, to turn destructive. You can see it in how quickly any discussion of an event escalates from what banal thing actually happened to what catastrophe might have happened, and what someone's ordinary words are "code" for.

People are so confused and anxious and out of their coping-depth, they're clutching at whatever flimsy life-preserver is thrown at them. Ostentatious piety is a standard life-preserver of failing civilizations. The book burning has already started; blasphemy laws may not be legislated yet but are certainly enforced. We're not far off witch-trials and stoning.... all the while condemning Muslims for doing the same.

If you pray to anything, you're prey to anything.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes Peterkin's post
18-07-2011, 08:41 AM
RE: Is the south getting more religious or am I just getting paranoid?
I haven't looked in depth at this situation, but as a citizen of the southern US, I'd say it's always been this way. But what you have to consider is several factors that I think have been mentioned before: increase in technology and social media, and an increase in vocal seculars. So in turn, you have more religious people digging in their heels and meeting the "challenge" (though often times, there is no outright challenge being made, but the often the religious mindset is trained to perceive challenges since many are engaged in a "spiritual war").

We also have to keep in mind our own perception biases - yes politically we're quite polarized but I think it's been that way for a long long time, - for example I didn't experience any of it directly up until the past 15 years or so, so the past 15 years or so has seemed THE WORST.

And as for those young people who have been exposed to science and technology but still go along with the religious stuff - keep in mind that 1) none of that means they've been exposed to critical thinking. 2) they've also been exposed to dozens or perhaps hundreds or thousands of media outlets that increasingly popularize ghost stories, pseudoscience, cryptozoology, psychic phenomena, and the Bible the basis of historical fact. If none of this is challenged, it can all be perceived as having just as much evidence as good science.

And of course I've heard it said that we (and most creatures, presumably) have evolved to simply do whatever it takes to get by, and often nothing more - we're naturally programmed to be lazy. So, you might get to flip on your A/C and get connected to the world via the internet, but mom and dad say God did it, so - whatever. Again, if everything goes unchallenged, then it's pretty easy to just accept all of it without giving any of it much critical thought. Trust me I did it for years - even though I pretty much hated organized religion, I still bought into the whole "well science doesn't know everything, and look how wrong it's been before" argument. I believed in God (or gods), spirits, ghosts, and the like.

It's amazing the amount of cognitive dissonance people can live with, but it still happens all the time.

Our brains deceive us on a regular basis, so we have to find ways to fight back.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
20-07-2011, 09:48 AM
RE: Is the south getting more religious or am I just getting paranoid?
(17-07-2011 12:29 PM)The_observer Wrote:  From my European point of view... (I hope I am not going to step on sensitive patriotic toes here, but this has to be said...)

The US is becoming really polarized. It's not that the south is getting more religious, nor the North more secular, the contrasts about EVERYTHING in the US is getting more and more intense (politics, race, religion, finance...)

Knowing "when it pours in Washington, it drizzles in Brussels" this deeply concerns me

I think your point of view is worth more since you are "outside" the constant information beating we Americans endure day to day. We are beat with conflicting ideologies every moment of every day. News paper, TV, radio, magazines, and the internet all attempt to sway thinking. I find it difficult to get a real grasp on anything solid. So feel free to give me an outsiders view.

“We're born alone, we live alone, we die alone. Only through our love and friendship can we create the illusion for the moment that we're not alone.” Orson Welles
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
20-07-2011, 10:10 AM
RE: Is the south getting more religious or am I just getting paranoid?
(20-07-2011 09:48 AM)myst32 Wrote:  So feel free to give me an outsiders view.
I will...
I don't want to hijack this tread so I will start another topic the next 24h.

Observer

Agnostic atheist
Secular humanist
Emotional rationalist
Disclaimer: Don’t mix the personal opinion above with the absolute and objective truth. Remember to think for yourself. Thank you.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
06-09-2011, 05:22 PM
RE: Is the south getting more religious or am I just getting paranoid?
I am not originally from the south but i am currently residing in NC. It is kind of like the Ohio of the south. Truthfully, I have not seen any change through the different generations. Young, old, and middle aged allseem heavily religous.

I am going to hell because i dare to question bronze-age goat herders, and think for myself.
~Me~

I am not smarter than religious people because I have a better understanding of science than them. I am smarter because I know I am not going to live forever, and I am happy with that.
~Me~
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
06-09-2011, 05:37 PM (This post was last modified: 06-09-2011 05:45 PM by mysticjbyrd.)
RE: Is the south getting more religious or am I just getting paranoid?
I think this is what you are looking for,

http://religions.pewforum.org/comparisons#

I remember an older # was 16% nonreligious throughout US, so in reality the nonreligious is fasting growing group.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
06-09-2011, 07:57 PM
RE: Is the south getting more religious or am I just getting paranoid?
I can't say that anything has changed. I've lived in SC my whole life and people are just as religious now as they were when I was a kid. Every time I go on college campus, there are people passing out Bibles on the sidewalks at the edge of campus where they can't be prevented from doing so. We teach "abstinence plus 1" for sex ed in our schools because God wants us to be virgins until marraige... a class in which you can't discuss any form of homosexual sex or any sex other than vaginal sex as acceptable or ok. When I was in school, my 8th grade science teacher taught Creationism alongside Evolution (now, granted, she did it because she wanted us to be able to defeat the Creationism argument, but that wasn't the motivation of most of the science teachers). There's a Scientology church less than a block from the art school where kids pose nude for extra money. You can't throw a rock in any town or small city without hitting a church. I work in public safetly and, despite the fact that it's a public, government office, we have people there who actively try to convert you and tell you how disappointed they are when they find out you're not a Christian, but then they turn around and talk about how they don't like blacks, jews, Muslims or Nurse Midwives (yes, nurse midwives...I don't know why).

Really, nothing has changed. The few of us who cling desperately to reason do so at the expense of social/career dirision and mocking whispers. I sympathize with anyone who feels like they're alone in a sea of crazy, but you're not. Just try to be patient, always be honest, and never let them get you hot. They feed off your negative emotion and want to use it against you. It's your cool rationale that causes them to stumble and respect you despite their extremism.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
09-09-2011, 07:44 AM
RE: Is the south getting more religious or am I just getting paranoid?
(17-07-2011 12:29 PM)The_observer Wrote:  From my European point of view... (I hope I am not going to step on sensitive patriotic toes here, but this has to be said...)

The US is becoming really polarized. It's not that the south is getting more religious, nor the North more secular, the contrasts about EVERYTHING in the US is getting more and more intense (politics, race, religion, finance...)

Knowing "when it pours in Washington, it drizzles in Brussels" this deeply concerns me

I'm not European, in fact I live in a very conservative corner of a state in the American Midwest; but I agree 100% with your statement. The take over of media by conservatives who care more about making political points than telling the facts combined with the influence of the Internet have produced an incredibly divided country. It is strange that we have seen a disappearance of a political middle just as rapid as the death of an economic middle class.

We are producing a political powder keg that has to explode violently in the near future. I fear the potential outcome.

“There is no sin except stupidity.” Oscar Wilde
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply
Forum Jump: