Vulcans do not lack religion any more than Earthers. If they are said to lack religion it is because they are logical and do not pretend to hold beliefs they logically do not hold. For Vulcans to have religious belief is to act with logical consistency as if there is a God. They do not consider religion to be a social identity emotion or "lifestyle" belief where behavior and beliefs can exist in logical inconsistency. Religion for Vulcans is a truth that determines the choices — often hard ones –that people make.
A lifestyle choice is a group emotional involvement that is not important in regard to truth but display of group membership. The cloths Earthers buy, the teams Earthers support, the hobbies Earther pursue – they fill the social hours of Earthers, provide a topic of conversation for Earthers and offer Earthers a membership. In doing this, they create intense emotions as when an Earther's team wins or loses. They can boast up the confidence of an Earther and their ego. But that excitement has nothing to do with actual truth.
Yet that is what all Earther religion assert: they are about the truth not life style. Though they may not seem religious, Vulcans unlike Earthers respect this.
Logically whether an individual is animated by truth or life style can be seen in their behavior. Is an individual's behavior consistent with what they claim to be true.
The “tsunami test” shows this. Imagine a warm tropic beach where families of Earthers are playing and enjoying themselves in the sun. Tell one of those Eathers that a tsunami is on the way. How does a logician know when they are merely parroting what they have been told as if it were true without actually believing its truth, and when they are actually believing the truth of its coming? The test is not what individuals say. It is not whether Earthers tell you “We came here for a holiday and now a tsunami that will drown everything off on the beach at 10.45”. Merely saying that could be part of a life style choice or a ritual of a group membership said without serious thought– like providing the right answer on ""Who wants to be a millionaire" or some other quiz show merely because the correct answer has been shown to you in advance. To know what an Earther actually believes the logician looks at what the Earther does. Do they run or put on more sun cream and open another beer?
Actions speak louder than words, as Earther mothers say, and in the question of whether an Earther believes or not a tsunami warning, what speaks is not what they babble forth in Earth tongue about what they "believe" but how fast they run.
Talk is cheap and fakeable. Behavior, however, does not lie. It has not counterfeit. An Earther that actually believes a tsunami warning acts as if one is on the way. Their belief is spelt out in panic at their imminent fate. But not so, the Earther who only says that they believe it but behaves as if they do not. If a Earther stays on the beach, a logician can be confidently sure whatever they may say about “the tsunami being on its way”, that they are only saying words without regard to their truth. Behavior here trumps what Earthers say.
Christian faith is a tsunami faith – if its claims are actually believed, it offers the Christian no easy choices. It claims there is a coming. Christianity is about an Earther's present life where it is a kind of tropical beach holiday and Christ’s message is a tsunami warning. A spiritual warning about what will happen on death or the promised return of Christ. Prepare correctly and an eternity of heavenly Bliss awaits the Earther; ignore the message, and the Earther get sucked into an everlasting brimstone mega-tsunami. Christianity is not a lifestyle or emotion (they it contains many subtle emotions) but at core the reality that this present life as an Earther is not the ultimate reality in which an Earther lives. Vulcans do not judge whether the claims of Christian are or not true. They have religious tolerance. They are merely cultivators of logic and have great curiosity about how Earthers consider themselves rational when they are patently not.
The scientific evidence both by Earther and Vulcan researchers is overwhelming that religious belief for most Earthers is a lifestyle choice. Earthers asserting they are Christians rarely engage in Earther Christian behavior.
Pollsters have sampled Christians. 7-8% of American Earthers (for this is where the research has been done) are “evangelical”. To be counted as evangelical, an Earther in such surveys must be totally uncompromising in the rightness of their beliefs. They proclaim with utter certainty that they “believe that when they die they will go to heaven because they have confessed their sins and accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior”. They state, “they have made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ that is still important in their life today”. That Satan exists they take not as a possibility or hypothesis but as hard fact.
Logically, this should change their Earther behavior. But no it does not. Consider a behavior upon which the Bible is unambiguous: marriage. Matthew 19:4-6 states, “what God has joined together, let no one separate”. Matthew does not assert the logical proposition, “what God has joined together, let no one – except those that got married if they decide otherwise – separate. The Bible does not offer a logical clause for Earthers. No if Evangelical Earthers believed their Bible as true, logic would ensure that a marked difference exists in the divorce rate between them and other American Eathers. A divorce rate of 0% for Evangelicals, and 30% for everyone else. That is logic. But what do logicians find about Earther behavior here. Evangelicals separate at the same rate as non-Christian Earthers.
Other Christians groups are even more likely to divorce than nonChristians Eathers. Those Christians that claim to be born again (about 30 -40 % of American Eathers) actually divorce at a higher rate than non-Christians ones — a remarkable 90 percent of them after they find Christ. As the Earther Professor Brad Wilcox observes, "Compared with the rest of the population, conservative Protestants are more likely to divorce." This Earther has also pointed out that the divorce rates are higher in the southern U.S., where conservative Protestants make up a higher percentage of the population than elsewhere in the country. Indeed, high divorce rates in the Bible Belt as he notes they are "roughly 50 percent above the national average"
The Bible — and nearly every message from the evangelic pulpit — is also unambiguous about sex for Eathers. The Southern Baptist Convention, for example, runs the “True love waits” pledge program so teenage Evangelist Eathers can resist sin and not engage in premarital sex. Since 1993, about 2.4 million young Eathers have signed the pledge. If the faith of these Earthers is a real belief not merely an emotionally based lifestyle choice then the statistics should be simple. True love waits pledge Christian Earthers: 0% sexual intercourse before marriage, 99% the nonChristian Earther rest. But do these Earthers keep themselves virgins for their wedding night? You bet Beta Zeta V they do not. Researchers from the Earther universities of Columbia and Yale have followed for seven years 12 thousand teenager Earthers that had taken the pledge. 88 percent admitted having sexual intercourse before marriage. (And remember that is only the percentage who admit to losing their virginity after making this very public commitment). And the rates of having sexually transmitted diseases the researchers observe "were almost identical for the teenagers who took pledges and those who did not." Religious belief is not the road least taken it would seem for Earthers at least in terms of logic but the road never taken.
Vulcan are tolerate about religious belief. If Earthers want to make “True love waits” pledge that is fine. What Vulcan find curious and raises their eyebrows is that Earthers are so illogical. They claim to be religious but their Earther behavior shows that do not in fact hold the truths of their religion. Instead, religious belief amongst Earthers is a lifestyle activity that provides them with an emotional identity. Earther religius faith is not logical.
This it should be noted is a separate issue to that of faith–that requires a logical leap. But even Earthers make that leap they cannot act logically with what that faith in consistency requires.
For details about Christian behavior in Earthers including Prof Brad Wilcox’s comments and the Columbia and Yale university research see “The Scandal of the Evangelical Conscience: Why don't Christians live what they preach?” Ronald J. Sider, Christianity Today, January/February, 2005, Vol. 11, No. 1, Page 8.