Religious people outnumber and are happier than atheists in societies facing hardship or conflict, a new study indicates.
"Circumstances predict religiousness," study leader Ed Diener, a University of Illinois emeritus professor of psychology and senior scientist with the Gallup Organization, said.
Religion helps in hard times
"Difficult circumstances lead more strongly to people being religious. And in religious societies and in difficult circumstances, religious people are happier than nonreligious people. But in nonreligious societies or more benign societies where many people's needs are met, religious people aren't happier - everyone's happier."