“This new survey reports that confident nonbelievers are more emotionally healthy with respect to ‘fence sitters’ or religious doubters, shows that ‘spirituals’ report less satisfaction with their lives than those who identify with other self-labels, and suggests that the common assumption that greater religiosity relates to greater happiness and life satisfaction is not quite true,” says a release from the Center for Inquiry (CFI), a leading association of secularists, humanists, agnostics and atheists — the range of “non-theists” who are often lumped in the polling category of “Nones,” or those who reported no religious affiliation…

The new NRIS study actually shows that non-believers, especially true atheists, tend to be men with advanced degrees and a much higher socioeconomic ranking than most Americans. He found that female non-believers are far more likely to identify as “spiritual” than “atheist,” and they are more likely to have a wider social circle than committed atheists, who tended to rank much lower on the scale of “agreeableness.” (However, “spirituals reported lower satisfaction with their lives than those with other belief labels,” Galen writes. So there.)…

Worse still, a leading religious demographer, Eric Kaufmann of the University of London, predicts that the growth rate among the Nones should top out at about 17 percent between the years 2030 to 2040. According to the Association of Religion Data Archives, the Nones may be their own worst enemy in this regard because they have low fertility rates and thus trend older — which Galen’s study also confirms.