A new survey from the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life shows that despite the high level of religiosity in American life, Americans know very little about religion. Agnostics and Atheists answered the most questions correctly, followed by Jews and Mormons, and then came Protestants and Catholics bringing up the rear.
"Respondents to the survey were asked 32 questions with a range of difficulty, including whether they could name the Islamic holy book and the first book of the Bible, or say what century the Mormon religion was founded. On average, participants in the survey answered correctly overall for half of the survey questions.
Atheists and agnostics scored highest, with an average of 21 correct answers, while Jews and Mormons followed with about 20 accurate responses. Protestants overall averaged 16 correct answers, while Catholics followed with a score of about 15.
Not surprisingly, those who said they attended worship at least once a week and considered religion important in their lives often performed better on the overall survey. However, level of education was the best predictor of religious knowledge. The top-performing groups on the survey still came out ahead even when controlling for how much schooling they had completed."
I'd love to say I find these results surprising, but I don't. It's been my experience that those who try and shove their religion onto others generally have the least amount of knowledge about said religion. This applies to every religion, in my opinion (though I admit I don't currently know any Buddhists). Perhaps this should be taken into account when folks like Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin publicly doubt the religious faith of people they don't like. I bet they would be among the folks getting the most questions incorrect. That is sort of their pattern.
The same quiz used for the survey can be taken online. Let me know how you score.