With the rise in scientific knowledge people began to learn of the physical processes behind natural phenomenon such as the change from day to night and the change from summer to autumn which were previously considered to examples of direct divine intervention in the affairs of the world. With the knowledge about the hidden but natural processes that cause natural phenomenon, came the perception that all events must have a natural explanation. This led many people to reject as myths the stories of the miracles of the patriarchs and Jesus as told in the Bible, the many stories of the miracles of various saints and the stories of witches and wizards that had been passed down from generation to generation. Secularists pointed out that the incidence of alleged miracles seemed to have an inverse relationship with the spread of education in the society (Bonham).
Alternate Sources of Morality
With the rise in secularism, it became possible for intellectuals to compose and advocate alternate systems of morality, not based on the Bible or the idea of the existence of a higher power. Certain ideas from these new founded systems of morality caught on with the general populace. Based on these ideas it became common for people to find fault with the actions of God or the righteous as described in the Bible; for example the wars, the harsh sentences ascribed to seemingly mild mistakes such as breaking the Sabbath and God’s destruction of the innocent along with the sinful. Many people started seeing the Bible not as a source of moral guidance but a controversial source of immoral doctrines (Davies).
Before the rise of capitalism, the upper class considered themselves to be in a parental relationship with the masses. The nobility were concerned with the spiritual welfare of the lower class and were interested in getting them a moral and religious education. Due to the rise of capitalism, the upper class became concerned only with profits and increase in production which led to a decline in religious practice (Miller).
Scarcity of time
The pressures of the modern economic system necessitate that people spend a great amount of time earning their living. People nowadays lack both the time and the inclination to regularly attend Church or other religious services; this has resulted in the destruction of the Church-based society that was responsible for keeping people religious in the earlier ages.
Till the early 19th century, it was common for European countries to have discriminatory legislation suppressing the religious practice of non-Christian minority religions such as Judaism. Jews were marginalized and forced to reside in special neighborhoods called ghettos. With the rise in secularism, such discriminatory legislation was gradually repealed and non-Christians were also allowed to become full members of society with equal rights. This contributed to the de-Christianization of society.
In the two World Wars, a large number of the adult men of European countries were killed. In order to make up the labor shortage, European countries allowed a large number of people from their former colonial possessions in Asia and Africa to immigrate and settle in their countries. These people usually did not adhere to Western forms of Christianity but were believers in Islam or Hinduism. The presence of a large number of people from non-Christian backgrounds further eroded the Christian character of Western societies (Burayidi).
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