By Rodney Stark

A few years in the past, a debate among atheists and spiritual believers spilled out from the halls of academia and the pews of America’s church buildings and into the general public highlight. A crop of atheist manifestos led the cost, surmounting and conserving the tops of the nonfiction bestseller lists. This offensive prompted an outpouring of non secular rebuttals. As each side exchanged lively volleys, accusations have been leveled; myths, stereotypes, and strawmen arguments have been perpetuated; and sour hostility stuffed the air. at the present time lots of those misconceptions and myths linger on, besides the commonly acrimonious spirit of the debate.

In America’s Blessings, special researcher Rodney Stark seeks to transparent the air of this hostility and debunk some of the debate’s most generally perpetuated misconceptions via drawing from an expansive pool of sociological findings. taking a look at the measurable results of spiritual religion and perform on American society, Stark rises above the fray and focuses completely on proof. His findings may possibly shock many, atheists and believers alike.

Starting with a old evaluate, Stark strains America’s non secular roots from the founding of the rustic up in the course of the ultra-modern, exhibiting that religiosity in the USA hasn't ever been constant, static, or monolithic. curiously, he reveals that spiritual perform is now extra primary than ever in the USA, regardless of any claims on the contrary. From right here, Stark devotes entire chapters to unpacking the most recent learn on how faith impacts diversified points of contemporary American existence, together with crime, family members existence, sexuality, psychological and actual wellbeing and fitness, sophistication, charity, and total prosperity. The cumulative influence is that after translated into comparisons with western ecu international locations, the U.S. comes out on best many times. thank you in no small half to America’s wealthy spiritual tradition, the country has a ways decrease crime premiums, a lot better degrees of charitable giving, higher future health, more desirable marriages, and not more suicide, to notice just a couple of of the advantages.  

In the ultimate bankruptcy, Stark assesses the monetary influence of those spiritual realities. It seems that trust advantages the yank economy—and all three hundred million voters, believer and nonbeliever alike—by a conservative estimate of $2.6 trillion a yr. regardless of the atheist outcry opposed to faith, the outstanding end is obvious: all americans, from the main spiritual between us to our secular associates, fairly should count number our blessings.  

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America's Blessings: How Religion Benefits Everyone, Including Atheists by Rodney Stark


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