The definition of postchristian
The definition of postchristian is a person who no longer identifies as a Christian or who has left the Christian church.
The etymology of postchristian
The term “postchristian” has been used in different ways throughout history. It is typically used to describe a period or era after the Christian era, when Christianity no longer has the same dominant influence. Sometimes it is used more specifically to refer to a time when Christian beliefs and practices have declined significantly.
The term can also be used in a more personal way, to describe someone who has left Christianity behind. This might be because they no longer believe in God, or because they no longer identify with any particular religion.
The history of the term postchristian
The term postchristian was first used in the19th century by William Lecky in his History of European Morals. In it, Lecky used the term to describe the state of European morality after the 18th century, when traditional Christian beliefs and values began to be called into question.
The term postchristian is often used interchangeably with secular or nonreligious, but there is a distinction between the two. Secularism is a philosophies or world views that are not exclusively Christian. Nonreligious refers to people who do not identify with any religion. Postchristian, on the other hand, specifically refers to people who have left Christianity behind – either because they no longer believe in its teachings or because they no longer consider themselves Christians.
There is no single reason why people become postchristians. For some, it is a gradual process of unbelief or skepticism about certain Christian doctrines. For others, it may be a sudden rejection of Christianity after a personal crisis or a traumatic event such as war or natural disaster. Still others may never have been Christians to begin with, but were raised in families or cultures where Christianity was the dominant religion.
Whatever the reasons for becoming postchristian, those who identify as such often share certain commonalities: a questioning of religious authority, a focus on this world rather than the afterlife, and an emphasis on individual experience over doctrine. Postchristians also tend to be less dogmatic and more tolerant of other faiths than Christians – although there are certainly exceptions to this rule.
The postchristian population is growing in developed countries around the world as more and more people leave Christianity behind. In some cases, such as in Europe, this is due to declining belief in Christian teachings; in others, such as in North America, it is due to increasing religious diversity and an overall decline in church attendance. Whatever the reasons for this trend, it seems clear that the number of postchristians will continue to rise in the years ahead.
The current use of postchristian
The current use of postchristian is to describe someone who no longer believes in the supernatural or any kind of god.