Is Religion Heading For Extinction?

According to a study by the American Physical Society, nine countries are losing their religion. Among them are Australia, Austria, the Czech Republic, Canada, Finland, Ireland, New Zealand, the Netherlands, and Switzerland.

Researchers Daniel Wiener of the University of Arizona and Daniel Abrams and Haley Yaple of Northwestern University used data taken from the countries over the past one hundred years. They have found that more and more people in modern secular societies are identifying themselves as unaffiliated with religion.

The model indicates that in these societies the perceived utility of religious non-aliation is greater than that of adhering to a religion, and therefore predicts continued growth of non-aliation, tending toward the disappearance of religion.

In the Netherlands as many as forty percent of the country’s population identified themselves as unaffiliated with religion. In the Czech Republic that number was sixty percent. The study goes on to say that the number of Americans who do not identify themselves with any religion is growing as well:

“Americans without affiliation comprise the only religious group growing in all 50 states. […] In 2008 those claiming no religion rose to 15 percent nationwide, with a maximum in Vermont at 34 percent.” The study said.