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Religious Tolerance

This web site first went online 1995-APR-09. It is now over
two decades old -- older than and!

This web site went down on Saturday
at 7:12 AM Eastern Time, for an hour
or so, during routine maintenance
by our Michigan hosting service.

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We welcome everyone ...

whether you are an evangelical, secularist, other religious conservative, religious liberal, Deist, Wiccan, other Pagan, progressive, animist, theist, fundamentalist, Atheist, polytheist, secular humanist, Agnostic, etc.

Everyone should find their beliefs & practices accurately described here.

Almost all other religious web sites explain only the beliefs of the webmaster or sponsoring faith group. We are different: we try to explain accurately the full diversity of religious beliefs, world views, and systems of morality, ethics, and values.

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You can use the navigation bar to the left << or try the search box above. ^^ This web site has over 7,000 essays.

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Current high profile topics in the U.S. -- with a religious component:

Of the hundreds of religious topics saturating the news, the following appear to have the highest profile right now. It is interesting that almost all of the topics are related to human sexuality and/or gender:

bullet Same-sex marriage: What rights and protections should same-sex couples and their children have? Should they be allowed to marry, or be only registered in civil unions, or be allowed only to enter domestic partnerships, or be considered "legal strangers" -- merely as roommates? In mid-2013, the U.S. Supreme Court declared a major section of the federal Defense of Marriage Act to be unconstitutional. This required the federal government to recognize some same-sex marriages. Two years later, to the day, on 2016-JUN-26, the court ruled in the case Obergefell v Hodges that marriage by same-sex couple was a new civil right across the entire country: the District of Columbia, 50 states, and 5 territories.

bullet Abortion access: In what situations should informed women be free to choose to have an abortion: all, none, or some? What are the best ways to reduce abortions: by restricting access or by making childbirth more feasible, or by increasing contraceptive usage. Would educating sexually active youth in how to prevent pregnancy and STIs help or hinder?

bullet Islamophobia: This involves fear, anger, hatred, discomfort, and/or discrimination directed against Muslims. Some target the 19 perpetrators of 9/11; some a group of violent radicals within Islam; some against all of the world's 1.2 billion Muslims.

bullet Religious freedom:  This term has two very different meanings. In the past it referred to people being free to believe as they wish, assemble with others of the same religious tradition, engage in different religious practices, proselytize freely, etc. However, it is now often used to mean something very different: to use religious freedom to oppress, denigrate, and attack women and minorities -- particularly sexual minorities.

bullet The fight against the HHS birth control mandate: A recent Health and Human Services mandate requires most employee health insurance policies -- including those used by Catholic hospitals, universities, agencies, etc. -- to offer free access to birth control to the employees.  The church feels that it is their religious right to fight its employees' access to contraception. Many of their Catholic and non-Catholic employees beg to differ. Numerous court cases are being fought. If the mandate survives, then there is likely to be a drastic reduction in unexpected, unwanted pregnancies, and thus a massive drop in the number of abortions.


"Federal Defense of Marriage act (DOMA):" This law originally prevented legally married same-sex couples and their children from obtaining any of the approximately 1,138 federal benefits, protections, and rights that were automatically given as special privileges only to opposite-sex married couples. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on 2013-JUN-26 that Section 3 of the law was unconstitutional. Same-sex married couples now have the same rights as opposite-married couples subject to some limitations. This ruling is expected to have a major long term impact on LGBT equality because of the majority opinion written by Justice Anthony Kennedy.


"Boy Scouts of America" (BSA): The BSA prohibited LGBT youth and adults from joining, and expelled any such persons when they were discovered within the organization. Delegates to their 2013 annual meeting voted to allow LGBT youths to join, but to expel them on their 18th birthday. Conservative religious denominations and parachurch groups are outraged that LGBT youths are allowed to join; some are organizing groups in competition to the BSA.

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This web's most popular sections:

Over a third of a million unique visitors come to this web site each week. However, about 97% of our visitors bypass this home page entirely and go to sections dealing with specific topics.

Recently, the most popular section is World religions' beliefs & practices, followed by Buddhism, Islam, Wicca, a neopagan religion, Hinduism, Homosexuality in the Bible, Human embryo & fetal development, Same-sex marriage, Christianity, Sharia law, Data about world religions, The Amish, TaoismOur group's statement of beliefs, Naturist info., and Homosexual orientation/LGBT topics.

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Information for these essays was extracted from reliable sources, and believed to be accurate and reasonably unbiased. Where possible, they have been reviewed by a group (typically of 3 or more persons) who follow the belief before the material is placed online. However, the entire field of religion is very subjective. Multiple, conflicting, and often mutually exclusive opinions abound. Before accepting anything on this web site that may have a direct impact on your own or somebody else's life, we recommend that you check out its validity with other information sources.

If you find any errors here, please report them so that we can list them on our errata page and correct our essays. A Contact Us link is at the bottom of almost every page in our web site.

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Most visitors come from North & Central America and Europe. We have never been able to figure
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  1. The six religions on the left navigation bar include the three largest faiths in North America and the three most visited faiths on our web site.

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That's not a typo; we really have been around since 1995-APR-10, during the infancy of the Internet!
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