Religion will become extinct by 2041 as the world becomes more developed and wealthier,, proclaims a new study by a noted author and biopsychologist Nigel Barber.
Barber makes the claim in his upcoming e-book, Why Atheism Will Replace Religion, which will be available next month. The Irish author says Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism and all other types of religious beliefs will be wiped out by atheism. Barber notes there is a direct correlation between religious or atheist beliefs with economic development and level of education. The more educated and wealthier a society is, the less religious they are and vice versa. Barber adds that religion is most popular in underdeveloped countries.
As the world continues to become more globalized and personal wealth increases, the less religious the society will be, Barber writes in the Psychology Today.
"Belief in God declines in more developed countries and atheism is concentrated in Europe in countries such as Sweden (64% nonbelievers), Denmark (48%), France (44%) and Germany (42%). In contrast, the incidence of atheism in most sub-Saharan countries is below 1%," he writes.
Barbers attributes belief in God in poorer, underdeveloped countries as a form of hope for people in a desolate environment.
"In my new study of 137 countries , I also found that atheism increases for countries with a well-developed welfare state (as indexed by high taxation rates). Moreover, countries with a more equal distribution of income had more atheists. My study improved on earlier research by taking account of whether a country is mostly Moslem (where atheism is criminalized) or formerly Communist (where religion was suppressed) and accounted for three-quarters of country differences in atheism," he added.
Meanwhile, a PEW study seems to corroborate Barber's view, at least in America: As of 2012, 20 percent of Americans now identify as agnostic, atheist, or "unaffiliated," with a religion, the largest percentage of people in the organization's history who have self-identified that way. We're far more interested in when reality TV producers will vanish from the earth.
Barber received his Ph.D. in Biopsychology from Hunter College, CUNY, and taught psychology at Bemidji State University in Minnesota and Birmingham Southern College in Alabama.