Human religions were started by charismatic or saintly personalities. They are perpetuated by other humans who are usually not as saintly as the founders. Since humans propagate all religions, they must contain errors. Further, even the primary percepts of the greatest of religions such as God, the soul and an afterlife cannot be proved through the scientific method. This too can lead a modern human to turn away from established religions. When a human moves away from beliefs of a religion, he or she may continue to believe in God in his own personal way or he may become an atheist. Deprived of reinforcements that a community can provide to its members, many who turn away from a religion become atheists or do not think of God often.
If a religion is full of poor practices moving away from it should be a good thing. However, along with that goes away a source of moral education. Thus we end up with more of the sort of behavior that produces misery in society. There is another reason for a weakening of morality in modern times. Many nations contain individuals of many different religious backgrounds. Therefore most modern governments are secular. In the past religion received support from governments but such support may be absent or peripheral in a secular government.
Modern educated persons may not believe in any religion but in public they often support moral and ethical behavior. Such a stance might be hypocritical because it does seem that without a belief in the principle of retribution by an all knowing Supreme Intelligence a human will commit an immoral act if it produces gain or pleasure provided he or she is assured of not being found out, if such a human does not believe in the punishment that God might deliver. He or she would be foolish not to. However, publicly such a person may continue to support moral behavior. Thus the sin of hypocrisy is added to other misery producing acts, increasing human misery even further. It does seem that unless a human believes, loves or fears a Supreme Intelligence from Whom nothing is hidden, not even thoughts, it will be impossible for a human to become a fully moral being.
Thus modern human society is faced with the dilemma of either conforming to a religion that appears to be ridden with defects or to live with immoral and selfish behavior that leads to an increase of human misery. Both are undesirable alternatives. Perhaps the solution lies in secular spiritualism. By secular spiritualism is meant a belief in some of the most fundamental and essential beliefs of spirituality that are common in most religions. These are the belief in the existence of a Universal Intelligence or God, The belief in a soul and afterlife and belief in retribution.
Secular Spiritualism can then be incorporated in educational curriculums so as to promote good behavior in society. The various other beliefs, rituals and practices of religions can be left to the individual and his family. Thus a Christian need not believe in reincarnation and a Hindu or Buddhist can continue to do so. Secular Spiritualism can be a sound basis for developing moral education curriculums in education institutions in order to produce societies that lead to an increase of human happiness. It must be included at all levels of education from the lowest to the highest. Higher education grants a human enhanced capability. If these enhanced capabilities are not combined with moral and responsible behavior then the capacity to undermine human happiness can increase greatly. As an example, it can result in a nuclear scientist who will go around selling nuclear technology to all and sundry that pays for it, endangering the security of mankind as a whole. Probably, it is something that has already happened.