8"and the two will become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one. 9Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate." – Mark 10:8-9
I’m sure we’ve all heard this scripture. Given that religious people get the benefit of prayer, angels, and miracles, one would assume that they would have lower divorce rates. After all they have an all powerful god looking after them.
Yet what we find is the opposite when we examine the data.
(collected by the Barna Research Group)
Variation in divorce rates by religion:
Average religious divorce rates vs. nonreligious:
(based on the above data)
More detail and graphed:
Kudos to Catholics and Lutherans for not exceeding the baseline divorce rate. Congratulations, your religion isn’t tearing your family apart… but it isn’t helping either. All that prayer and divine moral teachings had no effect on strength of your marriage? That isn’t saying much for religion.
Ron Barrier, Spokesperson for American Atheists remarked on these findings with some rather caustic comments against organized religion. He said:
"These findings confirm what I have been saying these last five years. Since Atheist ethics are of a higher caliber than religious morals, it stands to reason that our families would be dedicated more to each other than to some invisible monitor in the sky. With Atheism, women and men are equally responsible for a healthy marriage. There is no room in Atheist ethics for the type of 'submissive' nonsense preached by Baptists and other Christian and/or Jewish groups. Atheists reject, and rightly so, the primitive patriarchal attitudes so prevalent in many religions with respect to marriage."
StopTheReligiousRight.org had some scathing comments as well:
"We hear an awful lot from conservatives in the Bible Belt and on the TV about how we all should be living. Certainly a culture that teaches the conservative religious values of the Christian right must have clean living written all over it. And lots of ripe fruit from their morally superior lives abounding."
"It doesn't. Far from it. People that talk the loudest may be the ones walking the slowest. Joining its history of Biblically correct bigotry and discrimination, it is an area with the highest divorce, murder, STD/HIV/AIDS, teen pregnancy, single parent homes, infant mortality, and obesity rates in the nation. As a region, the Bible Belt has the poorest health care systems and the lowest rates of high school graduation."
U.S. Census Bureau data has confirmed the the Barna Group’s research pointing out that the ‘Bible Belt’ has the highest divorce rates in the country (after Nevada of course).
Lets not forget about the Muslims – 31%
An article in InFocus News says the Muslim divorce rate is at 31%.
“According to a study conducted by Dr. Ilyas Ba-Yunus, a sociology professor at State University of New York, the overall divorce rate among Muslims in North America is at an astounding 31%” - http://www.infocusnews.net/content/view/986/135/
If religion were real and prayer worked, this number would be lower than our control group (atheists/agnostics).
Hinduism must be the one true religion – 5%
Finally! Results you would expect from a religion. The Hindu divorce rate is only 5%! Holy Cow that’s low! (pun intended) :D
“The study, titled the US Religious Landscape Survey, released on Monday by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, also found that Hindus also have the lowest divorce rate of any group --only 5 percent have been divorced.” - http://www.hindujagruti.org/news/4133.html
Hinduism must be the one true religion! Based on this data, I don’t see any other religion that can claim such a thing. If this religion were real and prayer worked, their divorce rate would be lower than our control group… and it is. Wow… maybe I’m on to something. :P
Factor in the Muslim and Hindu divorce rates to the average and you get
|Average religious divorce rate (with Muslim & Hindu added):||23.4%|
|Average nonreligious divorce rate:||21%|
Religious still cant beat nonreligious, and no one can beat the Hindus.