Eric_PK

The best research shows that, as countries and people become more affluent, they become less religious. The US is the counter-case to that, being far more religious than the other western powers, but we are still considerably less religious than we were even 20 years ago.

So, in my mind, the answer to the question depends on where the world ends up 100 years from now, and though world conflicts have lessened over the past 50 years (we’ve gone 60 years without a world war), there are huge challenges around energy, water, etc. that aren’t going away.

Posted: February 25th 2008

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vjack www

For as long as there has been such a thing as science, enlightened humans have been predicting the death of religion. As science has closed many of the gaps where gods used to dwell, theology and apologetics emerged to explain away reality. As evidence accumulated to support the value of a scientific worldview, religion both retreated and transformed into something increasingly nonsensical but no less appealing to believers.

As tempted as I am to predict that humanity will eventually overcome religious delusion, to do so would be to ignore history. Thus, I see no reason to predict sweeping changes. In fact, if one accepts the common perspective that religious fundamentalism is a reaction against modernity, one could even make an argument for increasing religious influence and divisiveness.

I suppose the bottom line is that any predictions about what will be going on in the world 100 years from now are highly speculative. This may be especially true when questions of religion are involved. If current American trends continue, we could see the return of a religiously-motivated McCarthyism or even theocracy. If trends reverse, we could see a revival of Enlightenment principles and another cultural revolution. While I hope for the latter, I cannot ignore the possibility of the former.

Posted: June 19th 2007

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RTambree

No one can say. Predictions like this are almost always wrong. Predictions made in 1900 about the year 2000 were entirely wrong.

It would be nice if the poorest countries in 100 years time would enjoy the standard of living of the richest countries today. That way, religiosity would decline automatically, without it being outlawed or overtly opposed. The less people need supernatural deities, the less they believe in them.

On the other hand, environmental factors such as global warming may cause increased tensions over resources, like fresh water and oil. In turn, war causes more hardship, pain, and suffering which then would indirectly cause religiosity to increase again.

Posted: June 16th 2007

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