Great Christina writes an extensive article on Alternet about how atheists and religious people have the same amount of sex but atheists reports much more satisfaction in their sex life. because it is guilt-free. According to Great Christina, this is confirmed by a scientific study recently released, titled "Sex and secularism". She does point to some flaws in the study; it was an internet survey and a large chunk of responders are Pharyngulites. Given the negative impact that most major world religions have on self-esteem, as well as the sexophobia of most of these religions, it seems like a non-brainer that "atheists do it better". The article is long but worth the read. A link to the original "Sex and Secularism" report can be found in her article, below.
Do atheists have better sex? Yes. According to science, that is -- and more specifically, according to the recently released "Sex and Secularism" study.
In January 2011, organizational psychologist Darrel Ray, Ed.D. (psychologist for 30 years and author of The God Virus as well as two books on psychology) and Amanda Brown (undergraduate at Kansas University, focused on sexuality and sex therapy) conducted a sex survey of over 14,500 people -- atheists, agnostics, and other people in the secular community. The survey was looking at religion, atheism, and sex: how religion affects sex, how leaving religion affects sex, whether lifelong atheists feel differently about sex than people who have recently deconverted, and so on. The report -- "Sex and Secularism: What Happens When You Leave Religion?" -- is on the Internet, and if you want all 46 pages of the naughty details, including the charts and graphs and personal stories, you can download it free (you just need to register on the site).
But if you just want to know the gist?
Leaving religion improves people's sex lives.
Atheists and other non-believers, as a whole, experience a lot more satisfaction in their sex lives than they did when they were believers. They feel much less guilt about their sex lives and their sexuality. The sexual guilt instilled by so many religions tends to fade, and indeed disappear, when people leave religion -- much more thoroughly than you might expect. And according to the respondents of this study, non-believers give significantly better sex education to their kids than believers do.
Now, when it comes to people's actual sexual behavior, religion doesn't have nearly as much impact as you might think. Religious and non-religious people have pretty much the same kinds of sex, at pretty much the same age of onset, and at pretty much the same rate. Believers are just as likely to masturbate, watch porn, have oral sex, have sex outside marriage, and so on, as non-believers are, and they start at about the same ages. So it's not like religious sexual guilt is actually making people abstain from forbidden sexual activity. All it's doing is making people feel crummy about it. And when people leave religion, this crumminess decreases -- at a dramatic rate. Believers and atheists are having pretty much the same kinds of sex... but when it comes to the pleasure and satisfaction experienced during this sex, it's like night and day.
Okay. Before anyone squawks, I'll start the squawking myself: There are some demographic problems with this study, and it shouldn't be relied on as the absolute final word on this topic. In particular, the participants in the study aren't statistically representative of the population: they're statistically representative of whoever heard about it on the Internet, and they're disproportionately represented by readers of the hugely popular atheist blog, Pharyngula. (In fact, in several places throughout the report, the researchers themselves freely acknowledge the limitations of their research.)
But that being said: The results of this report that aren't new? They're entirely consistent with the results of other research. Lots of other research, both on human sexuality and on religion/ atheism. And that makes those results a whole lot more plausible. As researcher Darrel Ray told me, "Our data is virtually identical to other national surveys on the basics of when and how people start sexual behavior." (Citations of those studies are in the report.) Yes, it's virtually impossible to get completely accurate, statistically representative information about human sexuality under any circumstances: there's not really any ethical way to get information about sex other than relying on people's self-reporting, and it's a topic that people tend to, you know, lie about. But on the reliability scale of human sex research, this report seems to rank on the higher end.
IN the article's next section, called, "Men on Top", saying not *ALL* men are on top, does not seem to negate the remark here:
//"Seeing all this, the feminists thought, wow, men dominate everything, so society is set up to favor men. It must be great to be a man."//
Undeniably, like all humans, men have stressors, too. That does not mean oppression of women does not exist.
I refer again to my reply above, where i stated, oppression of women very well might serve a small % of the men in a society, but overall, oppression of women in a society has an appalling impact on that societies success. The fact that not *ALL* men are on top, does not negate the oppression of women exists, and does not negate the fact that oppression of women is an unsuccessful approach to successful societies.
Also, keep in mind, many males are also feminist. Several of the remarks in the article, would lead one to believe, the author thinks only women object to the oppression of women, which is so so so not true.
Where is the data that says that 20% of men get access to 80% of the sex ? How does one even quantify "all the sex". Do you mean all the sex=all women? In the US, ~45% of young people ages 25-34 are married. This data is not compatible to the statement that 20% of men get access to 80% of the sex, unless one assumes over all the men that are married (young adults, remember), are not having ANY sex and their wives are having sex with the lucky 20%. And the data does not include opeople who live tiogether but are not married.
Unless you were talking about unmarried men. But I still would like to see some data showing that 20% of unmarried men are having 80% of the sex.
The data on married couple is from this link:
Marital Status Among Young Adults Ages 25-34 (Percent)
Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2000 Census and American Community Survey.
Among the total population ages 18 and older, the proportion married dropped from 57 percent in 2000 to 52 percent in 2009. This is the lowest percentage recorded since information on marital status was first collected by the U.S. Census Bureau more than 100 years ago.2 Among women, the proportion married dropped below 50 percent (to 49.9 percent), so the number of unmarried women (including those who are separated, widowed, divorced, and never married) outnumber married women, possibly for the first time in U.S. history. In 2009, there were an estimated 59.5 million adult women who were married, compared with 59.8 million women in other marital categories.3
Many people who are classified as single are actually in cohabiting relationships with opposite- or same-sex partners. In fact, the sharp decline in marriage has been accompanied by a rapid increase in the number of cohabiting couples, as reported by the U.S. Census Bureau in September, 2010.4 Cohabitation has been on the rise for several decades, but the Census Bureau links the recent increase in cohabiting couples to rising unemployment rates and growing economic uncertainty, especially among young men. Given the scope of the recent recession, many more couples are likely to choose cohabitation over marriage in the coming years.
Maybe he meant to suggest that 20% of single/dating men are getting way more sex than the other single/dating men?
(not sure if that is what he meant....also not sure if that would be anywhere close to true or not)
or maybe he meant to suggest, that 20% of single/dating men, + philandering married men, are having way more sex than ....all the other men....i dunno, if maybe that is what he meant...????
//"This is the lowest percentage recorded since information on marital status was first collected by the U.S. Census Bureau more than 100 years ago"//
WOW!! i did not know that.
//"In fact, the sharp decline in marriage has been accompanied by a rapid increase in the number of cohabiting couples, as reported by the U.S. Census Bureau in September"//
//"His misdeed was to think thoughts that are not allowed to be thought, namely that there might be more men with high ability."//
NO, his misdeed was slamming half of our population, with the insult they are stupider than men. It's only 'offensive' when the guy at the gas station says that, but you just expect more from the President of Harvard.
//" No wonder some women were offended."//
again, i would like to point out, that it is NOT just women who find such remarks offensive. I know, i know, hard to imagine, but, there are indeed, males who do not approve of offensive sexist remarks, which do not include considering how many generations it can take to undo the rampant widespread impact on a society while still struggling to recover from eons of oppression.
and the author's attempts to appear fair minded, in referencing >males than females with mental retardation was strawman.
//"Likewise, I mentioned the salary difference, but it may have less to do with ability than motivation. High salaries come from working super-long hours. Workaholics are mostly men. (There are some women, just not as many as men.) One study counted that over 80% of the people who work 50-hour weeks are men."//
wow, would i love to see that study. This news is going to be a huge shock to all those women, moms, and single moms, working 2 and 3 jobs to support their families. Women often have to work more hours, because they are paid less.
Re: the author's frequent references to women being "less motivated"--- The playing field has not been level, is much better now in USA anyway,
even in just my lifetime
i have seen big changes,
but, to anticipate all members of a culture will suddenly, in one generation, be able to undo all the 1,000s of years of oppression, is unreasonable and simplistic.
If your (the author's) theory, that wealth comes to those who just work harder/work more hours,
it'd be so fun to see the work schedules of that top 2% of CEOs who are bazillionairres....Please someday do watch film called, "Capitalism, a Love Story".
//"That means that if we want to achieve our ideal of equal salaries for men and women, we may need to legislate the principle of equal pay for less work."//
Women with same education, same number of years in field, typically make 0.70 to the 1.00 that a male makes. People are not asking for "equal pay for LESS work".
sorry, i will just walk away, i disagree with many of the points the author of the article linked in comment.