CNN Belief Blog: 'I'm spiritual but not religious' is a cop-out

Published: Sunday, Sept. 30 2012 12:00 a.m. MDT

Our take: Increasing numbers of young people describe themselves as "spiritual, but not religious." Alan Miller of CNN's Belief Blog argues that such an attitude is a cop-out that avoids having to deal with important questions.

The increasingly common refrain that "I'm spiritual, but not religious," represents some of the most retrogressive aspects of contemporary society. The spiritual but not religious "movement" - an inappropriate term as that would suggest some collective, organizational aspect - highlights the implosion of belief that has struck at the heart of Western society.

Spiritual but not religious people are especially prevalent in the younger population in the United States, although a recent study has argued that it is not so much that people have stopped believing in God, but rather have drifted from formal institutions.

It seems that just being a part of a religious institution is nowadays associated negatively, with everything from the Religious Right to child abuse, back to the Crusades and of course with terrorism today.

Copyright 2016, Deseret News Publishing Company