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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

New Atheism is dead. The atheist movement is anemic. Now what?

The major news and commentary websites have been publishing stories such as: Is the New Atheism dead? (The New Republic, November 4, 2015) and  Growing criticism by atheists of the New Atheism movement (Oxford Press, March 10, 2016).

As noted in a previous post,  I mentioned that YouTube atheist Thunderf00t said about the atheist movement after Reason Rally 2016 had a very low turnout: :
I'm not sure there is anything in this movement worth saving. Hitchens is dead. Dawkins simply doesn't have the energy for this sort of thing anymore. Harris went his own way. And Dennett just kind of blended into the background. So what do you think when the largest gathering of the nonreligious in history pulls in... I don't know. Maybe 2,000 people. Is there anything worth saving?
 In 2015, the atheist author Joshua Kelly wrote:
 ..since the death of Hitchens: angry atheism lost its most charismatic champion. Call it what you like: New Atheism, fire-brand atheism, etc., had a surge with the Four Horsemen in the middle of the last decade and in the last four years has generally peetered out to a kind that is more docile, politically correct, and even apologetic
New Atheism is a rhetorically militant form of atheism. It is a reaction to the growth of religious fundamentalism in the world (religious conservatives have more children), the global resurgence of religion and a failure of the secularization thesis which posited that religion would fade away (See: Failure of secularization thesis and global resurgence of religion).

For all intents and purposes, New Atheism is dead. And there will be no resurrection of New Atheism. And although militant atheism is hanging on in China, given the rapid growth of Christianity in China, I see militant atheism falling in China and then subsequently in Vietnam and North Korea. So sometime in the 21st century militant atheism will be effectively dead as a force in the world.

Given: the current implosion of militant atheism; New Atheism dying and being replaced with milk toast atheism in the Western World;  atheists/agnostics shrinking as a percentage of the world's population; the immigration of the religious into secular Europe (who are very often resistant to assimilation); and the pessimism of many atheists as far as the atheist movement; the name of this blog - "Combating atheism" - seems obsolete.

Lately, the major news outlets have sparse reporting on the topic of atheism. And the few news stories they do have are often negative towards atheism or boring stories reporting on trivial matters. In short, "Atheism: The excitement is not raging."

There will be no glorious future battles in relation to atheism vs. religion, but rather a slow global attrition of the dying breed of atheists. This will be combined with a withering away of atheist influence in the media and the educational systems of the world.. The 21st century will be a horrible century for militant atheists and antitheists. 

The growth of atheism in the twentieth century began with a bang due to the militant atheism associated with the Russian Revolution and the subsequent formation of the Soviet Union. The decline of atheism will be death by a thousand cuts due to demographic changes in the global population (See: Shall the Religious Inherit the Earth?: Demography and Politics in the Twenty-First Century by Eric Kaufmann, Belfer Center, Harvard University/Birkbeck College, University of London).

Periodically, I may choose to post to a newly created blog entitled Examining atheism. However, reporting on the losing atheist movement "team" could quickly grow to be tiresome.so it will be infrequent after awhile (given the amount of infighting going on they can hardly be called a team). I posted an initial post to the blog Examining Atheism so people would not go to an empty blog.

Today, this blog received over 1,400 page views which is not bad for a new blog with only 14 posts.  At the same time, given the current state of affairs, a blog named "Examining atheism" is a better fit. In the 21st century, the rickety building of atheism won't be able to withstand the gale of the global resurgence of religion - especially the gusts of wind caused by the global growth of evangelical Christianity and the global growth of creationism.

""The trends that are happening worldwide inevitably in an age of globalization are going to affect us." - Professor Eric Kaufmann on global desecularization

In the meantime, enjoy the video below by Lester Lewis & Singing Rose Ministry.  

Jesus is the winner man - the winner man all the time!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The summer of 2016: A BAD summer for atheism

The Christian evangelist Ray Comfort is releasing his video The Atheist Delusion this summer.  Judging from his previous videos and the amount of views they received, The Atheist Delusion video will receive millions of views.

Below is the official trailer for the video which was recently uploaded to YouTube.

The summer of 2016: It's going to be a very BAD summer for stubborn militant atheists. 


Will 21st century cultural/ideological convergence grind down atheism at an accelerating pace?

Earlier in the day, I created a post entitled Ideological convergence will grind down atheism in the 21st century which cited the work of various scholars.  If you haven't done so already, please read that article before reading the remainder of this article.

Question: Will the pace of cultural/ideological convergence grind down atheism at an accelerated rate in the 21st century?

Consider:

1.  In 2011, the American Spectator declared:
The report estimates about 80,000 new Christians every day, 79,000 new Muslims every day, and 300 fewer atheists every day. These atheists are presumably disproportionately represented in the West, while religion is thriving in the Global South, where charismatic Christianity is exploding."
Now I don't know if the number of atheists is decreasing in absolute number due the explosive growth of Christianity in China and the existence of state atheism in China, but as a percentage of the world's population atheism is seeing a decline. See:  Growth of Christianity in China and Desecularization

 2.  The American sociologist and author Peter L. Berger introduced the concept of desecularization in 1999.  According to Berger, "One can say with some confidence that modern Pentecostalism must be the fastest growing religion in human history."

Phillip Jenkins published the book The Next Christendom: The Coming of Global Christianity.

Chuck Colson, citing the work of Jenkins, writes:

As Penn State professor Philip Jenkins writes in The Next Christendom: The Coming of Global Christianity, predictions like Huntingtons betray an ignorance of the explosive growth of Christianity outside of the West.

For instance, in 1900, there were approximately 10 million Christians in Africa. By 2000, there were 360 million. By 2025, conservative estimates see that number rising to 633 million. Those same estimates put the number of Christians in Latin America in 2025 at 640 million and in Asia at 460 million.

According to Jenkins, the percentage of the worlds population that is, at least by name, Christian will be roughly the same in 2050 as it was in 1900. By the middle of this century, there will be three billion Christians in the world -- one and a half times the number of Muslims. In fact, by 2050 there will be nearly as many Pentecostal Christians in the world as there are Muslims today.

3.  If the religious and/or religious immigrants and their descendants continue to grow in secular places like Europe and China, they will have more power to influence the media (who are dependent on advertisers so they will not want to offend the religious)  and government as far as religious freedom.

Conclusion:

So given the much higher daily increase of the religious per day in the world, I would argue and their attendant growing influence on media, government, etc., I would argue that pace of global desecularization and the expected desecularization of the Western World in the 21st century would happen at an increasing rate during the 21st century

For more information, please see:

Growth of global desecularization

Acceleration of 21st century desecularization



Eric Kaufmann: Shall the Religious Inherit the Earth?

Ideological convergence will grind down atheism in the 21st century

Samuel P. Huntington founded Foreign Policy magazine. In the early 1990s Huntington advanced the idea of a coming intensification of  a "clash of civilizations".

Hutington's magazine Foreign Policy  pointed out in 2013 that the world is seeing more of a convergence of civilizations rather than a clash of civilizations.  Of course, clashes are occurring such as Muslim terrorism in Paris, etc.  On the other hand, there is far less Christian fundamentalist violence. In fact, it is rare.

Religious fundamentalists set up barriers to assimilation in terms of irreligious beliefs (religious schools, etc.) which the  religious demographic/political scholar Eric Kaufmann and other scholars point out (see:Religious immigrants to Europe resistant to secularization  and   Eric Kaufmann - Religion, Demography and Politics in the 21st Century).  That is why many European religious immigrants are not assimilating (see: Religious immigrants to Europe resistant to secularization).

Given the assertiveness/aggressiveness of many Muslims and multiculturalism, public schools in Britain are very reluctant to challenge the creationist beliefs of Muslim children which is highly upsetting to Richard Dawkins (see: Richard Dawkins: Muslim parents 'import creationism' into schools). 

In 2009, The Guardian declared:
Mass migration has led to a rise in creationist beliefs across Europe, according to a British scientist.
Michael Reiss, who is a professor of education at the Institute of Education in London and an Anglican priest, said the evolution-creationism debate could no longer be thought of as something that happened elsewhere and that more and more people in the UK did not accept evolution.

Reiss told the Guardian that countries with a higher proportion of Muslims or fundamentalist Christians in their population were more likely to reject evolution. He added: "What the Turks believe today is what the Germans and British believe tomorrow. It is because of the mass movement of people between countries.
"These things can no longer be thought of as occurring in other countries. In London, where I work, there are increasingly quite large numbers of highly intelligent 16, 17 and 18-year-olds doing Advanced Level biology who do not accept evolution. That's either because they come from a fundamentalist Christian background or from Muslim backgrounds.

Johns Hopkins University Press reported in 2014: "Over the past forty years, creationism has spread swiftly among European Catholics, Protestants, Jews, Hindus, and Muslims, even as anti-creationists sought to smother its flames."

On the other hand, in the United States, the children of atheists have the lowest retention rate of all religious/irreligious groupings as atheists are far less likely to set up barriers to prevent assimilation (See: Retention rates - American atheism ). For example, I have never seen a private atheist school for children. There are no atheist radio stations playing years worth of atheist songs.Very few atheist households subscribe to atheist television channels.

American atheist children adopting religious belief does not bode well  for irreligion in secular Europe which is seeing a flood of religious immigrants with higher birth rates. 

Next, English is widely spoken around the world.

Look at the convergence of people significantly less interested in atheism/atheist in these geographic regions:

Google trends: Term atheist:
Google trends: Term atheism:
 On December 23, 2012, Professor Eric Kaufmann who teaches at Birbeck College, University of London wrote:
I argue that 97% of the world's population growth is taking place in the developing world, where 95% of people are religious. On the other hand, the secular West and East Asia has very low fertility and a rapidly aging population... In the coming decades, the developed world's demand for workers to pay its pensions and work in its service sector will soar alongside the booming supply of young people in the third world. Ergo, we can expect significant immigration to the secular West which will import religious revival on the back of ethnic change. In addition, those with religious beliefs tend to have higher birth rates than the secular population, with fundamentalists having far larger families. The epicentre of these trends will be in immigration gateway cities like New York (a third white), Amsterdam (half Dutch), Los Angeles (28% white), and London, 45% white British.

At a conference Kaufmann said of religious demographic projections concerning the 21st century:
 Part of the reason I think demography is very important, at least if we are going to speak about the future, is that it is the most predictable of the social sciences.

...if you look at a population and its age structure now. You can tell a lot about the future. ...So by looking at the relative age structure of different populations you can already say a lot about the future...
...Religious fundamentalism is going to be on the increase in the future and not just out there in the developing world..., but in the developed world as well.
The religious, particularly religious fundamentalist have higher birth rates than the irreligious and atheists/agnostics have sub-replacement fertility (see: Atheism and fertility rates ). Atheism/agnosticism are expected to decline in the 21st century in terms of their global market share and fertility is playing a leading role although not the sole role (see:  Causes of desecularization ).

According to Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary's Center for the Study of Global Christianity, which has made projections up to the year of 2050, the percentage of the global population that are evangelical Christians/pentecostals is expected to increase (see: Growth of evangelical Christianity).

Kaufmann told a secular audience in Australia: "The trends that are happening worldwide inevitably in an age of globalization are going to affect us."
 .
The fertility rates of various worldviews, globalization and ideological convergence  will grind down atheism in the 21 century.  On the other hand, biblical Christianity will prosper globally and will see a rise in irreligious areas of the world China/Europe (see: Desecularization  and Asian atheism  and European atheism and 21st century decline).

Rabbi Jonathan Sacks declared: "...the 17th century was the beginning of an age of secularization which has lasted four centuries until now; the 21st century is exactly the opposite, it's the beginning of an age of desecularization. Religion is seizing power; they're not yielding power."

If you are a militant atheist, consider this:

Ideological convergence has already ground away the vast bulk of Western World atheists. Now most self-professed atheists in the West are atheist poseurs who claim  atheism is merely a lack of belief in God/gods despite that fact that encyclopedias of philosophy define atheism as the denial of the existence of God (see: Definition of atheism)  In short, most self-professed Western atheists are agnostics.

Agnostics outnumber atheists in the world. So given ideological convergence it is more likely that atheists would become agnostics than vice versa (In addition,  you have the tug of theistic believers on atheists). And that is exactly what has happened. How much easier will it be to assimilate bunch of agnostic fence-sitters into believers in God? Surrounded by a growing theistic society, more and more agnostics will become theists. As alluded to above, religious demographers are expecting agnostics to decline as a percentage of the world's population in the 21st century.  

To see the followup article, please see:  Will 21st century cultural/ideological convergence grind down atheism at an accelerating pace?



Eric Kaufmann: Shall the Religious Inherit the Earth?

Monday, July 11, 2016

2016: More BAD news for American atheists

New Atheism books started being published in 2004. The 2004 publication of The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason by Sam Harris was joined over the next few years by a series of books by other New Atheism authors. The New Atheism books had far higher sales than the vast majority of books about atheism.

Below is a graph of Google searches for the word "atheism" from Google trends and please allow a brief time for the graph to load. Please notice that there are less Google searches for the term atheism than in January of 2004. Also, notice the lowest previous point on the Google trends graph was July of 2006 and now it is even lower.

YouTube atheist Thunderf00t said about the atheist movement after Reason Rally 2016 had a very low turnout: :
I'm not sure there is anything in this movement worth saving. Hitchens is dead. Dawkins simply doesn't have the energy for this sort of thing anymore. Harris went his own way. And Dennett just kind of blended into the background. So what do you think when the largest gathering of the nonreligious in history pulls in... I don't know. Maybe 2,000 people. Is there anything worth saving?





There is some controversy within atheism circles whether of not atheists should call themselves atheists due to the bad reputation of atheism/atheists. New atheist Sam Harris said concerning the label of atheist, "It's right next to child molester as a designation."

Some atheists use euphemisms for the word atheist in public when people ask them what their religion is (rationalist, nonbeliever, etc.). And at the poorly attended Reason Rally 2016, atheist David Silverman (who is president of the American Atheist organization) had atheists/agnostics repeatedly yell the word "atheist" (see the video below). Notice all the empty chairs in the video.

There are more Google USA searches for the word "atheist" than in January of 2004 according to Google trends, but the bad news for atheists is that the general trend is currently downwards despite some atheist activists encouraging people to call themselves atheists (allow a brief time for the graph to load).

Friday, July 8, 2016

Creationist Ken Ham vs. atheist and evolutionist PZ Myers

Quote of atheist  and evolutionist PZ Myers:
Ken Ham is bragging about his web traffic, and it’s rather pathetic.

Oooh. Millions are big numbers. But just to put it all into perspective, some random low-ranking non-entity of a godless college professor in the most rural part of Minnesota gets about 25-30 million visits per year, and yeah, it’s growing every year. And his site links regularly to AiG, meaning a lot of the visitors to Ham’s precious empire are there to laugh at him.

Alexa ranking of Freethoughtblogs which is owned by PZ Myers



Alexa ranking of Answers in Genesis website


Ken Ham's website (the Answers In Genesis Website)  now has a greater Alexa ranking than PZ Myer's website.

If only PZ Myers didn't think he was random and there was a special purpose in his life. Then he might be more purposeful and intelligent in his web marketing strategies.

If only some atheist in the past built an enormous wooden structure in the past that PZ Myers could replicate and draw enormous crowds with. But atheism is boring and always will be.

 Ark Encounter video


Saturday, July 2, 2016

Kicking atheism, agnosticism and evolutionism when they are down. Why its time to crush godlessness like an aluminum can



 Is it time to kick atheism, agnosticism when they are down?

Agnosticism is actually more prevalent than atheism although atheism gets more press.

So how is agnosticism doing in the world?

How is atheism doing in the world right now?

How is evolutionism doing in the world right now?

How is Jesus doing in the world right now? Is Jesus triumphing like he always does?

Is it time to ramp up creationist fundraising/outreach and crush godlessness like an aluminum can?

In 2015, Pew Research indicated in their report The Future of World Religions: Population Growth Projections, 2010-2050 that agnostics and atheists “will make up a declining share of the world’s total population.”

The Center for the Study of Global Christianity (CSGC) at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary estimated that agnostics made up 9.5% of the global population in 2015. CSGC projects that agnosticism will be 8.71% of the global population in 2025 and 7.19% of the global population in 2050

Atheism is in decline worldwide, with the number of atheists falling from 4.5% of the world’s population in 1970 to 2.0% in 2010 and projected to drop to 1.8% by 2020, according to a new report by the Center for the Study of Global Christianity at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Mass.

 The prominent historian Sir Diarmaid MacCulloch, professor of the History of the Church at Oxford University, indicates that he believes Christianity faces a "bright future" worldwide. According to MacCulloch, "Christianity, the world's largest religion, is rapidly expanding – by all indications, its future is very bright."

Professor Phillip Jenkins published the book The Next Christendom: The Coming of Global Christianity.

Chuck Colson, citing the work of Jenkins, writes:
As Penn State professor Philip Jenkins writes in The Next Christendom: The Coming of Global Christianity, predictions like Huntingtons betray an ignorance of the explosive growth of Christianity outside of the West.

For instance, in 1900, there were approximately 10 million Christians in Africa. By 2000, there were 360 million. By 2025, conservative estimates see that number rising to 633 million. Those same estimates put the number of Christians in Latin America in 2025 at 640 million and in Asia at 460 million.

According to Jenkins, the percentage of the worlds population that is, at least by name, Christian will be roughly the same in 2050 as it was in 1900. By the middle of this century, there will be three billion Christians in the world -- one and a half times the number of Muslims. In fact, by 2050 there will be nearly as many Pentecostal Christians in the world as there are Muslims today
Professor Eric Kaufmann told a secular audience in Australia: "The trends that are happening worldwide inevitably in an age of globalization are going to affect us."

The main ideological supply line of atheism/agnosticism is Darwinism. And Darwinism is vulnerable. Johns Hopkins University Press reported in 2014: "Over the past forty years, creationism has spread swiftly among European Catholics, Protestants, Jews, Hindus, and Muslims, even as anti-creationists sought to smother its flames."

General Douglas MacArthur declared: "The history of war proves that nine out of ten times an army has been destroyed because its supply lines have been cut off...”

Answers In Genesis has put a lot of effort into fundraising. However, I think there is room for a lot of improvement for other creationist ministries.  And its very doable. It just a matter of time before they do it - especially when Christendom sees the success of the combined effects of the Answers In Genesis website, the Creation Museum and the Ark Encounter.  I think Answers In Genesis is going to have a lot of forward momentum post Ark Encounter. Furthermore, and more importantly, evangelical Christianity is a fast growing and very evangelistic religion in the world and most evangelicals are staunch creationists. And global creationism is on the rise.

So is it time for Christendom to ramp up creationist fundraising and outreach and crush godlessness like an aluminum can?

Please look at the Google trends graph below after it finishes loading.



Atheists, agnostics and evolutionists.. Get ready. It's coming! The negative isms of atheism, agnosticism, Darwinism and evolutionism will be crushed like an aluminum can just other negative isms in history.

By the way, can you satisfactorily answer the 15 questions for evolutionists AFTER clicking on the links for the supporting articles and videos on the page so you make an informed answer?  I don't think you can! Click on the 15 questions for evolutionists HERE.