Can the Non-Religious Seek Religious Experiences?
Many Canadians claim no religious affiliation and consider themselves non-religious. However, many of these people still hold religious or spiritual beliefs.
It is not unusual in any part of the world for people to be independent of religion but still believe in God and pray and worship on their own, in private. For many, they do not believe this associates them with one religion or another. They are just doing their own religious thing. They believe how they want to believe and do not follow any kind of guidelines that go along with the many structurally established religions.
A recent survey by Sarah Wilkins-Laflamme of Oxford University, shows that many Canadians do participate in religious services every year, and one out of every seven people participate in personal religiosity on a weekly basis. A third of all Canadians hold their beliefs, both religiously and spiritually, especially important to how they live their lives. Many Canadians do believe in God and many even claim to have felt God’s presence at some point in their lives. Many Canadians who don’t consider themselves as affiliated with any one religion do still believe that there is life after death and most of those people also pray regularly.
Many Canadians did at some point consider themselves to be affiliated with a religion whether it was as Jewish, Muslim, Christian, or any of the many others. But somewhere along the way, they took a step back and separated from that affiliation and took to a new way to be spiritual and create their own belief systems.
It is true that affiliated religion is on the decline, but religious behavior is still prominent all over the place. One reason that so many people have become unaffiliated with religion is that religion has become so political over the years. Many religious leaders are taking controversial stances on a variety of political issues and dividing their congregation. As a result, many believers pull out of the churches and resort to practicing religion on their own in a way that they see fit for their lives.
As a result, the churches are getting smaller and more people are denying affiliation with a particular religion. Instead, they turn to personal religiosity and spirituality so they can be free to live their own individual beliefs.