Atheism For Dummies
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Atheism, humanism, and all the rest of the nontheistic isms show up in different ways around the world. What follows is a list of some of the most interesting places to watch for developments in religious disbelief.

  • Earth: Current home to 1.1 billion nontheistic people.

  • Ireland: Where those who call themselves “religious” dropped from 69 percent to 47 percent in seven years — the largest drop on Earth.

  • United States: Where the religiously unaffiliated made up the single largest belief bloc (23 percent) of those electing Barack Obama to his second presidential term.

  • Norway: Where 80 percent of the population belongs to the Lutheran Church of Norway but 72 percent don’t believe in God.

  • Québec: Once 83 percent Catholic and the most religious province in Canada, now 83 percent Catholic and the least religious province in Canada. Yes.

  • United Kingdom: Where there’s a state religion and religious education and prayer services in schools — and belief in God is currently down to 38 percent.

About This Article

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About the book author:

Dale McGowan, PhD, writes the popular secular blog The Meming of Life, teaches secular parenting workshops across North America, and is executive director of Foundation Beyond Belief, a humanist charitable organization. He has been interviewed in major publications, such as Newsweek and the New York Times, and was 2008 Harvard Humanist of the Year.

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