This title is a bit misleading, I think. The article is not about ethics really. Rather it is just a general overview of secularism in different places. -- Dallas
Does Secularism Make People More Ethical?
Barry Kosmin is a different kind of market researcher. His data focuses on consumers targeted by companies like Lifechurch.tv or World Overcomers Christian Church TM. The sociologist analyzes church-affiliated commercial entities, from souvenir shops to television channels and worship services.
But the most significant target of Kosmin's research is the consumer group most likely to shy away from such commercial products: secularists. "The non-religious, or Nones, hold the fastest-growing world view in the market," says Kosmin. "In the past 20 years, their numbers in the United States have doubled to 15 percent."
The director of the Institute for the Study of Secularism in Society and Culture at Trinity College in the US state of Connecticut, Kosmin is among the few researchers focused on the study of non-believers. This umbrella covers various groups including atheists, agnostics and humanists, as well as those who are simply indifferent to religion.
Secularists make up some 15 percent of the global population, or about 1 billion people. As a group, this puts them third in size behind Christians (2.3 billion) and Muslims (1.6 billion). Despite their large numbers, little is known about this group of people. Who are they? And if not religion, what do they believe in?
"Sometimes I feel like Christopher Columbus on an expedition to an unknown continent," says Kosmin. "For example, many believe that the US population is steadily becoming more religious -- but this is an optical illusion. Many evangelicals have simply become more aggressive and more political."
Read the rest on Spiegel.
They also brought that up -- about how the word seems derisive because it implies disapproval but resignation to the tolerated object/person/situation. I tried to find it so I could upload it, but I don't know what I've done with it, unless it is in the Moral Repository. I'll go look.
But I wonder about the chicken-egg question: are more morally inclined people also more inclined to be secular? In other words, that secularism per se does not necessarily make people more ethical, but that more ethical people tend to be or become secular. In any case, the spread of secularism is in my opinion a critical step in human progress, that will contribute to a better world.
You may as well ask which side of a coin is the top and which the bottom.
(Both is the correct answer.)
There's always a third side to a coin, its thickness.
All those who are not very morally concerned and remain somewhat indifferent. It makes for a thick coin.
this is why i remain an agnostic and refuse to identify with atheism. Atheist leaders like richard dawkings say, "morality does not exist, good and evil do not exist, we as humans only see it as petty indifference. we are nothing more than DNA propagating machines." But with faced with the question, "do you believe that the genital mutilation of little girls in the middle east is immoral and unethical he says 'yes' without realizing his obvious contradiction. after realizing his contradiction he retracts and says that morality is nature as opposed to nurture and is programmed in our DNA as human beings. If morality is programmed in our DNA (much like having legs, eyes, a nose ect), then why does there exist vastly different cultural ethics and morals all over the world. Many cultures have moral standards in direct contradiction with others that would deem those morals as barbaric and ruthless. If its in our DNA, wouldn't it be logical that morality and ethics be more universal? i refuse to let a man like that represent me. BTW, i haven't seen any studies and test showing results that verify secularists are more moral and ethical than the religious or vice versa. any opinion on this at this point is mere speculation