The New York Times

Don't Believe in God? Maybe You'll Try UFOs

This article is accompanied by an illustration by Marion Fayolle that is available at no charge to clients of The New York Times Op-Ed service.

THE LESS RELIGIOUS PEOPLE ARE, THE MORE LIKELY THEY ARE TO THINK ALIENS EXIST.

Are Americans becoming less religious? It depends on what you mean by “religious.”

Polls certainly indicate a decline in religious affiliation, practice and belief. Just a couple of decades ago, about 95 percent of Americans reported belonging to a religious group. This number is now around 75 percent. And far fewer are actively religious:

This article originally appeared in .

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The New York Times

The New York Times6 min read
Fear, Anxiety and Hope: What It Means to Be a Minority in Gaming
(Circuits) Five years after “Gamergate,” little seems to have changed in the industry for minorities, women and members of the L.G.B.T.Q. community. Here are six stories of people trying to change that.
The New York Times7 min read
Ali Wong Is Crossing Lines Again,This Time in a Book
The star of two uproarious Netflix comedy specials is nervous about how people will react to her essay collection. “I hope my siblings don’t get pissed at me,” she says.
The New York Times4 min read
When You Take a Great Photo, Thank the Algorithm in Your Phone
Not too long ago, tech giants like Apple and Samsung raved about the number of megapixels they were cramming into smartphone cameras to make photos look clearer. Nowadays, all the handset-makers are shifting focus to the algorithms, artificial intell