Abstract and Keywords
Disaffection from organized religion in the twentieth century led to rising levels of religious apathy as well as atheism. This is explored in this essay by enumerating the scale of change in a number of nations, and then by listening to the accounts of those who have lost religion. The influence of parents, childhood alienation, adult trauma, wartime combat, and scientific reasoning are each examined through the narratives of those who have left the religious tradition of family and community. To conclude, the essay reflects on the nature of being of no religion, including the impulses to a new secular morality, and to humanistic service in charitable work or providing celebrants for weddings and funerals.
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