Prominent scientist and atheist Richard Dawkins is facing an uphill battle during a visit to Colombia where he will stay until Wednesday. According to a recent poll, 97% in the South American country believes in God.
The poll was held by pollster Cifras y Conceptos in anticipation of arguably the world’s most famous critic of religious thought.
Ninety percent of the 1,800 polled Colombians said to be Christian. Only 3% said to be atheist like Dawkins.
Colombians’ religious preference
Only a tiny portion of Colombians believe in the scientifically supported theories on the origin of the universe and the human species.
We cannot, of course, disprove God, just as we can’t disprove Thor, fairies, leprechauns and the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
Widely accepted theories on the big bang and evolution can count on much disbelief in Colombia where the Catholic Church was in charge of public education until 1991.
Only 28% of polled Colombians said to believe that the universe came to existence after a big bang. Forty-four percent said they believed in evolution to explain the diversity of animal species.
What Colombian do and do not believe
The pollster also asked Colombians about the position on ongoing moral debates that are heavily influenced by people’s religious beliefs like abortion and same sex marriage.
The poll results showed that Christians are more inclined to reject the legalization of marijuana, same sex marriage and abortion.
Religion is capable of driving people to such dangerous folly that faith seems to me to qualify as a kind of mental illness.
Other moral issues, like life sentences for child abusers and an ongoing peace process with the FARC, showed little difference between Christians and people who believe something else.
A 19% minority of Colombians also believe in supernatural phenomena that are not supported by the country’s religions like horoscopes, tarot cards and witchcraft, a common religious belief in ancestral Afro-Colombian culture.