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Is religion more or less important than it was in the past?

Fewer people in the world believe in a religion but amongst those who do a minority has become radicalized, violent, and determined to force their beliefs on others. Technology has put into their hand's weapons of mass destruction that has enabled a small minority of religious conservatives to have the power at their disposal to terrorize entire populations and even overthrow governments.

Modern telecommunications has likewise enabled them to propagandize, indoctrinate, and recruit followers worldwide. Personally, I consider religion to have been a negative force holding back progress in parts of the world where religion and religious laws dominate for the past 200 years.