Why Faiths Are Crumbling

(In response to this post)

About M J Shepherd

Matthew graduated Louisiana State University in 2009 with a BA in studio art and a minor in art history. He has been drawing cartoons and comics online for several years.

  • Baby_Raptor

    The internet is actually god.

    Clearly, this is the only answer.

  • Machintelligence

    According to Daniel Dennett, churches evolved in a low information environment, where it was easy to keep the members ignorant both of the existence of other creeds and the actual tenents of their own. The internet is eroding this isolation and the churches are having difficulty adapting. There is some truth in the adage that the internet is where religion goes to die.

  • http://nomadwarriormonk.blogspot.com/ Cyrus Palmer

    If they actually bother to leave their bubble of delusion and look at the information. If they only go to religious sites it will only strengthen their convictions.

  • A3Kr0n

    I cherry pick the Internet

  • KMR

    Not if unbelievers go to religious sites also. I had always been the questioning sort but never had the opportunity to converse with an atheist until one started becoming a regular feature on a Christian site I frequented. He was never condescending, rude, or even remotely “angry” in his responses but just systematically pointed out people’s errors in regards to reasonable thinking. I started researching why he believed the way he did and my certainty started eroding from there.

  • Roger

    All Hail Shub-Internet!

  • Rationalist1

    It’s critical that one is polite, reasonable and knowledgeable when posting on religious sites. It helps dispel their preconceptions of what non-belief and non-believers are like.

  • Baby_Raptor

    lol I got down-voted. Someone needs a new snark meter!

  • KMR

    It is critical. If this guy had even once given into the desire to be an ass, then I never would have bothered engaging him. It also helped that he sincerely would ask questions and if someone had a good argument, he would acknowledge it. In other words, he always engaged as if he were sincerely looking for a dialogue, not looking to destroy another’s faith.

  • JA

    “The Internet, where religions come to die.”

    -Thunderf00t

  • Spuddie

    Just like religious belief!

  • Sara

    Is this statistically true? I thought, i.e., Christianity and Buddhism, were exploding in growth worldwide, in large part due to the internet where messages and ideas can be shared and given to wider and wider audiences.

  • baal

    I don’t think so. Do you have a link or do you banish me to the google tubes?

  • David Kopp

    They’re exploding in growth worldwide because the Christians here have lost their foothold and are proselytizing elsewhere, where people do have less access to information.

  • KMR

    It’s also only the conservative branches that are flourishing. The mainline ones (ie. liberal) are losing members everywhere.

  • Sara

    By here do you mean North America?

    I suppose that could be true, but do you have studies on that? It just seems that the Internet is giving more and more information to people, so that doesn’t seem to make a whole lot of sense.

    Two sites on growth I found quick:
    http://fastestgrowingreligion.com/numbers.html

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_population_growth

    According to this, the “others,” which I assume to have atheists is actually predicted to shrink. Maybe I’m wrong about that, but according to it, at least, religions are not shrinking in percentage or anything like that.

    I only ask because many atheists seem to post about or claim religions or faith, etc. are shrinking, when in fact the opposite seems to be true when I look into things. The only thing I can suspect is some Americentric or Western Euro-centric attitudes.

  • Sara

    In short, faiths are not crumbling…and therefore, obviously, the Internet is not responsible for this thing that isn’t actually happening. And, of course, the Internet is helping many faiths grow.

  • Mario Strada

    You know, most of here and elsewhere are usually quite calm and accommodating when we speak to regular believers. The reason you often see flame wars on these pages and elsewhere (like youtube) is really that conversation tend to start on the wrong foot.

    There will be an article and some drive by christian decides that something is bothering him. They will post but they have had ample time to get really pissed at the topic and by the time they write their comment it is almost impossible for it to be logically warped and offensive wither to reason, science or atheists in general.

    Sadly, what happens is that as the discussion gets larger, it is impossible to figure out who started the name calling. Here, you can be reasonably sure that it is some christian bent on starting a nasty argument. Elsewhere it can be both sides. Assholes are everywhere after all.

  • rustygh

    This is where it gets tricky. As you know sooner or later you end up hitting a site about your topic you think is pro that topic, however it turns out it is not? Yup, the internet ,where the masses slowly but steadily learn the truth about fictional religions. I love it! :)

  • M J Shepherd
  • advancedatheist

    The internet has made it easier for people with religious doubts to find each other and meet socially. Now even fundamentalist strongholds like Tulsa have public meetups of atheists and humanists. That simply couldn’t have happened back when I grew up in “rapture ready” Tulsa in the 1970′s, though from hindsight I wish I could have met some atheists to have relatively sane adults to talk to.

  • KMR

    I consider myself a non-believer now (although I think the liberal branches of Christianity would claim me if I’d let them) but I don’t know if I would agree with you. Sometimes you can get reasonable discussions going here but a lot of times no matter how nice a “Christian” seems to be they get what I consider attacked or personally mocked. Although in all fairness they’re coming to your “turf”. I don’t know but maybe it’s because you DO get attacked so much in the real world, on-line, etc that anyone who claims to be a Christian is automatically put into an asshole category. The best discussions I see occur on progressive religious sites. Anyway, just an observation but I’m pretty sensitive. Bluntness can sometimes read as rudeness to me although it was probably not meant to be so.


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