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Study Correlates Religiosity To A “Stronger Sense of National Belonging”

Deakin University researcher Fethi Mansouri says he had found that Australian Muslims who followed both regular law and sharia did not experience a sense of not belonging. Picture: Hollie Adams

This throws another wrench into the faulty radicalization models that claim extremism is related to greater levels of religiosity. It is also going to make some people, especially new-atheists unhappy, which is not a bad thing.

The Australian 

The more religious Australian Muslims are, the greater their sense of civic duty and of belonging to the nation, research has found.

The study by University of Western Sydney human geographer Kevin Dunn also found there was no empirical evidence to suggest Islamophobia caused religious radicalisation.

The finding contrasts with a claim made to this effect by ­Australia’s Grand Mufti, Ibrahim Abu Mohamed, in the wake of last month’s Paris terror attacks.

Professor Dunn led a team that interviewed hundreds of Muslims in Sydney mosques and Islamic centres and at Eid festivals. The surveys tested for ­incompatability and disaffection among Muslims, as well as feelings of being settled and belonging. The work found that the majority of interviewees were “well integrated into Australian society” and that “higher levels of religiosity were positively associated with stronger national ­belonging and a sense of Muslim integration”.

Religiosity was defined through a series of questions, ­including whether children were enrolled at Islamic schools, how important religion was to the ­interviewee and how often they prayed, attended mosque and fasted.

The study found that Muslims experienced racism at greater rates than other Australians, up to three times higher on average, but Professor Dunn said there was no evidence this in itself led to radicalisation.

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  • Just_Stopping_By

    You’re right that it’s misleading, but not really for that reason. The actual question is not “Are you well-integrated into Australian society?” but “Muslims are well integrated into Australian society” with choices of Agree, Neutral, or Disagree. See page 18 of the pdf: . The results are strongly driven by the eleven Muslims in the category of thinking that religion is not important at all in their life.

  • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

    No need to log off. I’ll see if we can add the rest of the article.

  • HSkol

    I do think if “Muslims” specifically had been mentioned, I would have had a different initial take – again, from the headline only. I did enjoy the portion of article I see here. I guess I’m in a nit-picking mood today. Time for me to log off perhaps? 🙂

  • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

    I can see that. I think it can be interpreted as you did and also in another way that reflects the content of the article. The wording is a bit vague. I thought you would say it’s misleading because it doesn’t mention that this study is about “Muslims” specifically.

  • HSkol

    Thanks for asking, Garibaldi. I thought you might. I gathered from the title (alone) that those who possess a religious world-view and related virtues are more prone to appreciate, back, and fight for the nation – be that for civil rights or against enemies – in which they reside than those that do not have a religious world-view. Perhaps it was my simple interpretation?

  • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

    Why do you think so HSkol?

  • HSkol

    Misleading article title – unless I missed something (Disclaimer: I’m unable to access the full original article).

  • Just_Stopping_By

    Here’s a disturbing report that directly deals with Islamophobia in the U.S.: “Threats, harassment, vandalism at mosques reach record high”

  • mindy1

    That is not surprising, people who are strong and confident tend to do well in life

  • Just_Stopping_By
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