Wellington is the “Godless” Capital of New Zealand… and Other Highlights from the Nation’s Census

The New Zealand Herald went through the 2013 census as well as the Deprivation index (measuring wealth) and combined them in a fascinating interactive chart:

That’s a hell of a lot of color, and the darker it gets, the less religious it is.

What they found won’t surprise you, but it’s fun to point out a couple of things:

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Landmark Study Shows Remarkable Growth of Non-Religious Americans

The last time the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life released a comprehensive study of the religious demographics in the United States was 2007. We know a lot has changed since then. Atheists becoming more vocal, another batch of young people being raised with the Internet (where religious doubts thrive), and the acceptance of LGBT Americans (with the corresponding anti-gay religious bigotry) have all led people away from faith.

Today, the 2014 Religious Landscape Study was released, based on interviews with more than 35,000 people, and it brings with it a lot of wonderful data showing how quickly people are shedding their faith.

Here are the highlights:

The percentage of Americans with no religious affiliation is higher than ever before, at 22.8%, up from 16.1% in 2007:

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Global Survey Finds 63% of World’s Population is Religious, While 11% Are “Convinced Atheists”

A new survey just released by WIN Gallup International (no relation to Gallup, Inc.) says that 63% of people around the world are religious, while those who are “a convinced atheist” make up 11% of the global population. (Global, in this case, refers to the 65 countries from which they were able to acquire data.) Unlike most surveys that put atheists under a broader “non-religious” umbrella, this one actually separates us from the rest of the “Nones.”

The most faith-filled countries in the world, with more than 90% of the population describing themselves as religious, are Thailand, Armenia, and Bangladesh:

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Atheists Aren’t the Most Hated Religious Group in Canada, According to New Survey

When it comes to public perception of atheists in the U.S., we usually rank pretty low. In a 2008 survey, only Scientologists had a lower approval rating. And we know we’re at the bottom of the list when it comes to electability.

But that’s not the case in Canada.

A recent survey done by the Angus Reid Institute and Dr. Reginald Bibby of the University of Lethbridge found that atheists are not nearly as hated up north!

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New Report Projects the Number of Religiously-Unaffiliated People in the U.S. to Double to 100 Million by 2050

A new report from the Pew Research Center says that, by 2050, the number of Muslims worldwide will be roughly equivalent to the number of Christians. That’s what most headlines about the report are saying.

But the report also has a lot to say about those of us who are “unaffiliated,” that is, atheists, Agnostics, and those who believe in a Higher Power but who want no part of organized religion.

The biggest highlights?

1) The number of Unaffiliated people worldwide is projected to rise from 1.13 billion to 1.23 billion between 2010 and 2050. However, the percentage of religiously-unaffiliated people in those years will drop from 16.4% to 13.2%.

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