- Published on Thursday, 21 May 2009 22:25
- Written by John Draper
- Hits: 23881
In December 2006, the Harris organization took a poll in several countries and asked many questions. The most interesting was this one:
BELIEF IN GOD OR SUPREME BEING
"Thinking now about religion, would you say that you are a…?"
|Great Britain||France||Italy||Spain||Germany||United States|
|Believer in any form of God or any type of supreme being||35||27||62||48||41||73|
|Agnostic (one who is sceptical about the existence of God but not an atheist)||35||32||20||30||25||14|
|Atheist (one who denies the existence of God)||17||32||7||11||20||4|
|Would prefer not to say||6||6||8||8||10||6|
For the other questions and the responses, click here
Earlier, Environics took a poll comparing the US and Canada in 2004.
|Religious beliefs are very important to me||66||81|
|I consider myself to be a member of a religious faith||57||73|
|I would like to have a religious service at my funeral||63||76|
|It is important for children to receive a religious upbringing||64||82|
A recent (2008) Harris-Decima poll found that 23 per cent of Canadians do not believe in any God. It seems to me that the answer depends a lot on the question. If you ask about religion, a lot will mention the church they go to which may not prove anything about what they believe. And another large proportion have been so brain-washed, they are afraid to tell a "possibly imaginary" God to "get lost".
Polls also confirm that the age group under 20 is most likely to be atheist.
In 2004, the following info was taken from this page: www.adherents.com/largecom/com_atheist.html . The quoted source is: Zuckerman, Phil. "Atheism: Contemporary Rates and Patterns", chapter in The Cambridge Companion to Atheism, ed. by Michael Martin, Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, UK (2005).These are the countries with the highest number of non-believers. Not all on the list of the top 50 are shown here (see the source site) but no Muslim countries feature in the top 50! Or are they too afraid to say so? A bit like asking someone in Russia in Stalin's day "What religion do you follow?"
|Total country||% Atheist/|
|Nonbeliever in God|
|Sweden||8,986,000||46 - 85%|
|Denmark||5,413,000||43 - 80%|
|Norway||4,575,000||31 - 72%|
|Japan||127,333,000||64 - 65%|
|Czech Republic||10,246,100||54 - 61%|
|France||60,424,000||43 - 54%|
|Germany||82,425,000||41 - 49%|
|Netherlands||16,318,000||39 - 44%|
|Britain||60,271,000||31 - 44%|
|Israel||6,199,000||15 - 37%|
|Canada||32,508,000||19 - 30%|
|Switzerland||7,451,000||17 - 27%|
|Australia||19,913,000||24 - 25%|
|Spain||40,281,000||15 - 24%|
|Italy||58,057,000||6 - 15%|
|China||1,298,848,000||8 - 14%|
|Portugal||10,524,000||4 - 9%|
|USA||293,028,000||3 - 9%|
A little snippet from France on Aug 28, 2009.
According to a poll for the newspaper Le Monde, the number of French people attending a weekly mass has dropped catastrophically from 20 per cent in 1972 to 4.5 per cent today. The survey also indicated that the typical French Catholic is female, over 50, and politically right-wing. Meanwhile, the number of those describing themselves as having no religion rose from 21 to 28 per cent between 1987 and 2009.
The figures confirm also the ageing of the Catholic population, half of whom are over 50 years of age, while only 23 per cent is under 35. Those who claim to belong to ‘other religions’ have increased from 3 to 5 per cent over the same period. Islam, in particular, is growing — it now has more than five million adherents — and if — as research shows — many Muslims do not practise regularly, 70 per cent declare that they observe the Ramadan fast.