All of us know people who once were part of the faith but who lost it. Also, we know people who moved the other direction, were secular but found the faith and are happy about it.
If you are a religious person and want to stay that way, or, are a parent or grandparent and want your offspring to stay in the faith, there are things to consider.
Obtaining a college degree is one of the most dangerous things one can do. Advanced degrees are even worse. The percentage of people who say they practice no religion skyrockets with the number of advanced degrees.
There are fields requiring advanced degrees where retaining one’s faith is more common. In general, applied fields are safest. The percentage of doctors and dentists, for example, who retain their faith is relatively high. Other applied fields would be engineering and management.
Going into the sciences is risky. There one digs into the origin of all kinds of things that ultimately endorse evolution.
Going into the social sciences in no better. Studying human behavior can undermine the belief a god is separate from the human mind.
The humanities have long been the home of secular thinking. Steer clear.
Home and parochial schooling keeps protestants in the faith better than public school. It does not work as well for Catholics.
The old World War II song asked, “How will you keep’em down on the farm, after they’ve seen Parie’?” I never heard an answer to that.
An atheist & a Christian will duke it our, Sept 24, 2011. The annual Red River Freethinker’s conference. Come and enjoy. www.redriverfreethinkers.org