publicly as citizens in “issue-specic collaborative groups or organizations.”
They tend to be more action and issue oriented than they are interested inrefection on metaphysical topics.
What is striking about Pasquale’s description o the Nots is how congruentit shows their attitudes and behavior to be with other Nones in the region, and inmany ways, with the religious style o the region generally. This is true especially o two eatures o the Nots that his research highlights: their intense, ethically construed individualism and their “social skepticism,” dened as their “pervasivepreoccupation” with “the destructive potential o human beings in groups andinstitutions, and how to overcome” it. They exhibit the strong impulse to reeand unettered activity and the ambivalence about social connections that hasrendered conventional social institutions relatively weak in this region sinceearliest European-American settlement.
Keysar and Kosmin report similarndings about individualism and loose institutional connections or Nonesnationally.
Where some o the Nots dier rom the majority o Nones and the generalpopulation o the region is in their sel-conscious insistence on articulatingtheir worldviews in naturalistic terms.
They consider worldviews that includea “supernatural” dimension highly problematic and dene themselves overagainst people who hold this position. Whether and how to understand theNots’ refective construction o their worldviews as in some way “religious” or“spiritual” is at the center o Pasquale’s disagreement with the treatment o Nonesin
Religion and Public Lie in the Pacifc Northwest
.In the chapter “Secular but Spiritual,” Mark Shibley ocused on the majority o the Nones, the 67 percent who agree strongly or somewhat that God exists.
He argues that while all Nones are disconnected rom conventional religiousinstitutions both by identication and aliation, the majority o Nones, thetwo-thirds who are religious by at least one conventional measure—belie—arespiritually open and so religious. Shibley proposes that, or the None majority,“Perhaps religious matters are simply experienced and expressed dierently” inthe region and goes on to employ a broad interpretive ramework to “betterilluminate the core values, ritual practices, types o transcendent experience, andorms o community that engage non-church-going Northwesterners.”
Pasquale’s dierence with Shibley over his choice to explore the majority o the Nones who are spiritually open rather than the minority o Nones whoare armatively secular, even materialist, rests partly on Pasquale’s claim thatthe latter are distinctively and importantly dierent rom other Nones. It also,however, raises an issue o denition. Specically, in discussions o secularization,should naturalistic worldviews be considered religious or spiritual? Is refectivemeaning-making a spiritual activity?