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Science Forum

  1. 08 Nov '15 09:19 / 4 edits
    http://phys.org/news/2015-11-religion-kids.html

    “... Religious parents are more likely to describe their children as empathetic and concerned about justice than are non-religious parents. But, new evidence reported in the Cell Press journal Current Biology on November 5 suggests that the opposite is in fact true.

    In the study, children growing up in households that weren't religious were significantly more likely to share than were children growing up in religious homes. The findings support the notion that the secularization of moral discourse may serve to increase rather than decrease human kindness, the researchers say.
    "Some past research had demonstrated that religious people aren't more likely to do good than their nonreligious counterparts," said Jean Decety of the University of Chicago. "Our study goes beyond that by showing that religious people are less generous, and not only adults but children too."
    ...”

    This may come as a surprise to some but not at all to me. I have heard some theists claim the high moral ground merely for their belief that there exists a god but I personally see absolutely no reason why a superstitious belief in the existence of a supernatural deity would help make people kind. You don't need to believe that there exists a supernatural deity to comprehend the difference between right and wrong nor to be kind.
  2. Standard member DeepThought
    Losing the Thread
    08 Nov '15 13:10
    Originally posted by humy
    http://phys.org/news/2015-11-religion-kids.html

    “... Religious parents are more likely to describe their children as empathetic and concerned about justice than are non-religious parents. But, new evidence reported in the Cell Press journal Current Biology on November 5 suggests that the opposite is in fact true.

    In the study, children growing up in hous ...[text shortened]... exists a supernatural deity to comprehend the difference between right and wrong nor to be kind.
    Have they adjusted for political opinions?
  3. 08 Nov '15 16:33 / 4 edits
    Originally posted by DeepThought
    Have they adjusted for political opinions?
    I assume not. Do you think religious parents are significant more likely to have certain common political opinions (excluding Neo-Nazism which I think, or at least hope, is relatively uncommon even among Christians. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_Nazi_Germany if you don't know what I mean by that ) than non-religious and a parent having such political opinions would have a significant impact on their children's tendency to be kind? It must be possible I suppose.
  4. Standard member DeepThought
    Losing the Thread
    08 Nov '15 18:54
    Originally posted by humy
    I assume not. Do you think religious parents are significant more likely to have certain common political opinions (excluding Neo-Nazism which I think, or at least hope, is relatively uncommon even among Christians. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_Nazi_Germany if you don't know what I mean by that ) than non-religious and a parent having su ...[text shortened]... ave a significant impact on their children's tendency to be kind? It must be possible I suppose.
    I was thinking more about mainstream positions, if right wing views were an indicator both for non-sharing and religion then they can't tell if it's religion or political views that are the driver.
  5. 09 Nov '15 08:22
    Originally posted by DeepThought
    I was thinking more about mainstream positions, if right wing views were an indicator both for non-sharing and religion then they can't tell if it's religion or political views that are the driver.
    Yes, in general correlation does not prove causation. A number of other factors such as wealth, race and culture also correlate with religiosity and should be taken into account.
  6. 09 Nov '15 11:11 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    in general correlation does not prove causation.
    The classic example of that being the correlation between night and day:
    Night is always followed by day. So night 'causes' day? Obviously not.