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Austin Cline

Britain: Most Secular, Most Atheist Nation?

By February 27, 2004

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Although the Church of England is being torn asunder by conflict between conservative evangelicals and progressives, apparently the average Briton isn't much interested in religion in the first place. According to a recent survey of 10 countries conducted by research company ICM the BBC, people in Britain are the most secular.

The BBC reports:

More than a quarter of Britons thought the world would be more peaceful with nobody believing in God, but very few people in other countries agreed. The survey found the highest levels of belief in some of the world's poorer countries, but also in the world's richest, America. ... Those willing to die for their God, or their beliefs, included more than 90% in Indonesia and Nigeria, and 71% in Lebanon and the US. Among Israelis only 37% were willing to take this ultimate step, and only 19% of Britons...
In most of the countries covered, well over 80% said they believed in God or a higher power. In Nigeria the figure was 100% and in the US 91%, with the UK scoring lowest at 67%. ... In Nigeria 91% of people said they regularly attended a religious service, contrasting with 21% in the UK and only 7% of Russians. The average across the 10 countries was 46%. In most countries well over 80% of the sample agreed that a belief in God or a higher power made people better human beings, with only 56% agreeing in the UK, by far the lowest figure.

Sounds like it is a great time to be British, at least if you don't want to be bothered by religion generally. I wonder if they accept refugees from America?

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Comments
May 5, 2010 at 7:49 pm
(1) Rob says:

Yay Britain!

Just a shame the neo-nazis are getting a bit of a foothold here…

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_National_Party

June 15, 2010 at 5:46 am
(2) WOWZAS says:

I can’t believe 100% of nigerians believe that god exists. Sounds to me like the most cultishly frightning place on earth!

June 27, 2010 at 1:18 pm
(3) Adam says:

Bullsh*t. England is probably more religious than most of the countries in Europe, including Italy and France. England is more conservative in comparison with the rest of Europe, while liberal in comparison to its former North American colonies.

June 27, 2010 at 4:10 pm
(4) Austin Cline says:

Bullsh*t. England is probably more religious than most of the countries in Europe, including Italy and France.

No, England is one of the least religious countries in Europe. It’s a little more religious than France, far far less religious than Italy.

September 14, 2010 at 12:49 pm
(5) Faisal Al Mutar says:

I think UK Education let people think more about the idea of god
Uk Always been anti Orthodox they made their own church that allows whatever they like
I think Brits are much better than Americans in that case
evanglicans and Catholics are responsible for many killings in this planet ..

June 16, 2011 at 11:15 am
(6) Smyrna Deer Hunter says:

Faisal Al Mutar,
You need to research you statement on the evangelicals and Catholics being responsible for more killings on this planet. In just under the last 100 yrs. Atheistic Regimes of the 20th Century has exterminate somewhere between 40,500,00 to 259,432,000 human lives. Compared to an estimated 20,000,000 give or take a 100,000 murdered by so called Christians in the name of Christianity, and this is from the Crusades of the 11th, 12th, and 13th Centuries, also counting the Spanish Inquisition, the Salem Witch Trails.

April 6, 2011 at 12:09 pm
(7) Simon Harris says:

Im British and went to a catholic school, and of all the people i know from school and all the people in my family and and all my friends only 1 person regularly goes to church that i know of! and the two churches closest to me (a catholic church and a methodist) have both closed do to the regular congregation being no more than 4-5 people…. Britain is alot more atheist/anti-theist than is made out, people just tick church of england or something on censuses out of habit in my opinion.

June 16, 2011 at 11:05 am
(8) Smyrna Deer Hunter says:

All I can say is if you don’t like the way it is in the United States and you don’t want to be bothered with religion go to England. I for one would not miss your opinions.

June 8, 2012 at 1:07 am
(9) Religion sucks says:

Religion is a curse upon humanity, a blight that infects major populations like an infectious disease. There is nothing good that comes from religion, its the 21st century you need morals then teach them to your kids. We dont need a book to tell us whats right and wrong anymore, and we most certainly shouldnt believe bullshit like the world was created in 7 days, humanity spawned from two people (one of which was made from dirt the other, his rib), some dude named noah built a massive boat which housed every species on earth, or that some poor ass carpenter could walk on water.

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