‘Religiously Unaffiliated’

Like many of you, I’m sick and tired of news sources hashing and rehashing last month’s presidential election.  I don’t want to hear about “Mitt Rominey and Bronco Bama” anymore either.  However, this particular NPR post caught my attention and was worth the reading.

This passage was particularly interesting to me:

“Young people just now entering adulthood are not only significantly more religiously unaffiliated compared with their elders today,” [Gregory Smith of the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life] says, but they are also more religiously unaffiliated than previous generations of young people.

He cautions, however, against conflating the “nones” with nonbelievers.

“Those two things are not the same,” Smith says. The “nones’ are certainly less religious than those who say they belong to a religious group, but many are also believers.

“The absence of a connection to an organized religion is not the same as the absence of a religious belief or practice,” he says.

Click here to read the full article

All That Is Needed

Reading Teilhard de Chardin today, I found the following passage.  This is all the response I wish to give to Mitt Romney’s remarks about “the 47%”:

Fundamentally, in spite of the apparent enthusiasm with which large sections of humankind go along with the political and social currents of the day, the mass of humankind remains dissatisfied. It is impossible to find, either on the right or the left, a truly progressive mind which does not confess to at least a partial disillusionment with all existing movements.

A person joins one party or another, because if one wishes to act one must make a choice.  But, having taken a stand, everyone feels to some extent hampered, thwarted, even revolted. Everyone wants something larger, finer, better for humankind. Scattered throughout the apparently hostile masses which are fighting each other, there are elements everywhere which are only waiting for a shock in order to re-orient themselves and unite.

All that is needed is that the ray of light should fall upon these people as upon a cloud of particles, that an appeal should be sounded which responds to their internal needs, and across all denominations, across the conventional barriers which still exist, we shall see the living atoms of the universe seek each other out, find each other and organize themselves.

Adapted from Building the Earth by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, written in 1937, published posthumously in 1965.  These words are mostly his, I have only altered them to make use of gender-inclusive pronouns.