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Jesus Retweets Me, This I Know: Christians Are Happier On Twitter

Illustration for article titled Jesus Retweets Me, This I Know: Christians Are Happier On Twitter

After analyzing the feeds of just under 2 million tweets from 16,000 Twitter users, social scientists have determined that Christians on the social network platform exhibit more happiness and optimism than atheists.

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In order to gather their samples of each group, the researchers went to the source: for the religious Christians, they found the followers of Pope Benedict XVI, Joel Osteen, Rick Warren, conservative political commentator Dinesh D’Souza and evangelical author Joyce Meyer. For the atheists, the followers of Richard Dawkins (The God Delusion), and the late Christopher Hitchens (God is Not Great: How Delusion Poisons Everything), as well as other outspoken and prolific skeptics.

Christians, they found, are more likely to use words like “love,” “happy” and “great”; “family,” “friend” and “team.”

Atheists win when it comes to using words like “bad,” “wrong,” and “awful” or “think,” “reason” and “question."

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And curse words and sarcasm and the names of Lars von Trier movies.

The researchers say the typical Christian Twitter user chooses "gut-driven" language based in the certainty of their faith, while atheists' rational thought "diminish[es] the capacity for optimism and positive self-illusions that typify good mental health."

Yeah, wondering daily why the human race even exists doesn't exactly want to make you Tweet a :DDDDD. Bear in mind, though, that the people selected are extremists on both sides. There are less militant agnostics as well as Christians who don't necessarily follow the Pope on Twitter.

'Christians happier than atheists - on Twitter' [CNN]

Image via GOLFX/Shutterstock

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DISCUSSION

This is because that's what they feel like they're supposed to say (very generally speaking, of course). All of the people I grew up in the church with are constantly posting on Facebook about all of the blessings in their life, how grateful they are that the Lord is testing them, etc etc etc. It's mind-numbing.