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Study: Religious People are Happier

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Are religiously active people happier than most?

A new study conducted by Pew Research Center shows that in some cases, religiously active people are happier and healthier than the alternative.

According to the study, “researchers divided survey-takers into three categories: the “actively religious,” who identify with a religion and attend a house of worship at least monthly; the “inactively religious,” who identify with a religion but attend less frequently; and the unaffiliated (or “nones”), who do not identify with any religion.”

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In the survey – that was given to 26 countries world-wide – the study indicated five major findings, according to Pew Research.

  1. Actively religious people are more likely than their less-religious peers to describe themselves as “very happy”
  2. There is not a clear connection between religiosity and the likelihood that people will describe themselves as being in “very good” overall health
  3. The actively religious are generally less likely than the unaffiliated to smoke and drink.
  4. People who attend religious services at least monthly often are more likely than “nones” to join other types of (nonreligious) organizations, such as charities and clubs.
  5. The actively religious generally are more likely than others to vote.
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The United States produced interesting comparable percentages in each of the categories. The US reported that 36% of the “actively religious” survey-takers were “very happy”, while a mere 25% of “inactive religious” individuals consider themselves to be very happy. Also, 58% of individuals that identified as actively religious were involve with other charitable organizations whereas 39% of ‘unaffiliated’ individuals were. Interestingly, it was reported that 69% of actively religious people indicated they were likely to vote in elections, compared to 48% of ‘unaffiliated’ individuals.

According to the data collected from Pew Research Center, it seems that individuals who identify as “actively religious” consider themselves to be happier in many areas of their life. One thing to note, the survey does not specify which religions are being studied. Using the term “religion” loosely, it can be assumed that the “religion” being looked at is the one most common to each of the 26 countries.

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SICK: American Icon Plymouth Rock Vandalized, Spray-Painted in Massachusetts

It’s likely the vandalism is an anti-American hate crime.

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An icon of American heritage and civilization, Plymouth Rock, was found vandalized and spray-painted upon Monday morning by criminals at its namesake in Plymouth, Massachusetts.

Plymouth Rock symbolizes the first arrival of the pilgrims from England in North America in 1620 A.D. The vandalism was found just weeks before a ceremony intended to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the pilgrim’s arrival in Massachusetts.

The large boulder is marked with the characters ‘1620’ to symbolize the pilgrims’ arrival. The rock was the first sight of those who disembarked from the Mayflower in the New World.

It’s unclear what the red spray-paint on the rock is intended to convey, but there’s a strong possibility the vandalism is motivated by hatred towards the icon of American culture.

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In addition to the rock, the spray-paint vandals also targeted a nearby statue intended to commemorate the first pilgrims to arrive in North America.

It’s also noteworthy that the vandalism was found on President’s Day, suggesting a further possibility of anti-American hatred as a motivation.

400th anniversary celebrations of the pilgrims’ arrival are scheduled for April, and to this day are a point of pride for many of their descendants who live in Massachusetts.

The director of a Plymouth cultural and tourism agency, Lea Filson, expressed her disappointment to see the icon of America so disrespected.

“Seeing this type of disrespect for the historic reminders of the Mayflower story is both sad and unsettling. The outpouring of concern and anger over the incident has been a positive ending to a thoughtless gesture.”

The town of Plymouth has already removed the vandalism from the rock, and local police are investigating to locate the culprits.

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