Monday, March 21, 2011

"not religious"

A story from the BBC says that two-thirds of Britons do not consider themselves religious. The assertion is drawn from census data that asked a couple -- but not more -- of questions. Naturally, the assertion drew catcalls and accolades from various quarters.

Aside from the ridiculousness of the queries, I sort of wish someone would ask similar questions in my country ... no point in giving the Brits the biggest slice of the ridiculousness pie. Sometimes ridiculousness -- the willingness to make assertions based on hopelessly under-researched information -- can bring with it some useful pointers. Is "religion" based on institution? On personal preference? What is religion and what, precisely, constitutes religiousness? If beer-drinking were to measure the answers to such questions, the world would be hopelessly alcoholic.

It's an idiotically-humongous realm, but that doesn't mean it can't teach something ... if only to do our best not to ask idiotic questions that form the basis for equally-idiotic answers.

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