The latest poll shows that the biggest barrier to converting to a different religion is the belief that a given religion is false, not based in fact.
According to a new survey, more than 60 per cent of those surveyed say they would like to convert to another religion, even if it means abandoning their faith altogether.
The poll, conducted by the Gallup Organisation and conducted in January, also revealed that 57 per cent said that “a person of a different faith should be taught about the truth and morality of the religion in which they are Christian”, while 42 per cent would want to see “a separate church for Christians”.
According to the survey, those who have changed their religion do not seem to care that they are not Christian anymore, although the majority of respondents said they had a negative opinion of Christianity, with a large number of respondents saying that “Christians are the enemy”.
In contrast, “secular” people are most likely to want to leave the religion.
The majority of people in the survey (56 per cent) said that they would consider converting to another faith if they had the opportunity, while the vast majority of atheists (57 per cent), agnostics (57 percent) and those who were not religious (56 percent) also said that the chance to change their faith would not be worth the effort.
“This survey is a good reminder that, for many people, the religion they were born into is not necessarily the one that has given them a strong sense of identity or belonging,” said the poll’s author, Daniel J. Sperber.
“These findings show that while some people might want to get rid of their religion, many others still have a strong need to belong to the faith they were raised with.
It is time to give the faith some time to come to terms with its past and embrace its true value.”
The survey also found that the majority (57%) of people believe that a person’s religious affiliation should be based on their religion rather than their personal beliefs.
However, only 36 per cent believed that this was the case for those who had converted to a particular religion.
The survey found that most people who were converted to different religions are not in favour of converting to other faiths.
The poll also found a significant gender gap when it came to conversion.
Women were the most likely group to consider converting their religion to another, but only 34 per cent agreed with this statement.
However, it is clear that many people have found it difficult to reconcile their religious beliefs with their own personal religious practices.
More than half of those who said they were currently Christian (55%) said they could not change their religion.
“Some people still feel that they have no choice but to follow the teachings of the church or religion they are born into,” said Jody Hickey, president of Gallup.
“But this is only one part of the equation.
In the long run, this is going to have to change.
The sooner we can make that shift, the better.”