I remember reading some time back that believers are supposedly more charitable givers than non-believers. If that is indeed the case, I suspect that most of the discrepancy lies in the fact that church-based charities are so commonplace and readily accessible. It may be a little tougher for non-believers to get involved with communities that give them easy access to secular charities. You know, herding cats and all that jazz.
But, we're getting more organized. One of the cool things is that it's getting easier for non-believers to find various secular charities. So yesterday Hemant Mehta had some encouraging news: Foundation Beyond Belief members have raised over $42k in just the last three months – for a variety of charities.
I strongly believe that religious people who give to charity do so the vast majority of the time not out of some sense of religious duty, but out of their sense of human solidarity – nothing more than a desire to help others because it makes us feel good about ourselves and makes the world a little better place for all of us. This number is undoubtedly a very, very small sliver of charity from non-believers (since it's strictly FBB members), but it's encouraging. It proves yet again that we can be good people just for the sake of being good, without having to believe in a supernatural dictator.