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Most ‘Nones’ Leave Religion Due to Lack of Belief

Seventy-eight percent of ‘Nones’ grew up in religious homes, according to a Pew Research Center poll, with 49 percent leaving religion due to a lack of belief.

“Religious ‘nones’ are by no means monolithic,” Pew explained. “They can be broken down into three broad subgroups: self-identified atheists, those who call themselves agnostic and people who describe their religion as ‘nothing in particular.'”

Lack of belief was cited by 82 percent of atheists, 63 percent of agnostics and 37 percent of ‘nothing in particular’ respondents.

“This includes many respondents who mention ‘science’ as the reason they do not believe in religious teachings, including one who said, ‘I’m a scientist now, and I don’t believe in miracles,'” the report explained. “Others reference ‘common sense,’ ‘logic’ or a ‘lack of evidence’ – or simply say they do not believe in God.”

By comparison, 20 percent of all respondents cited a dislike of organized religion as the basis for their change – 22 percent of the ‘nothing in particular’ group, 19 percent of agnostics and 10 percent of atheists.

While 10 percent of all respondents said that they haven’t formally rejected the faith of their upbringing but are no longer active practitioners, 14 percent of those claiming ‘nothing in particular’ did so.

The full report is available here.