48% of Brits are atheist or agnostic

48% of Brits are atheist or agnostic March 24, 2008

In a new survey by Christian pressure group Theos, 48% of respondents declared themselves to be either agnostic (26%) or atheist (22%). They kept this a bit quiet in their press announcement, preferring to concentrate on the fact that just over half think that Jesus rose from the dead in some way – although only 30% agree with the Christian belief that he was physically resurrected.

A 48% “no religion” response is pretty remarkable – even better than the BHA survey last year which concluded that 36% of the population are humanists. Theos blames this on a dodgy sample – but that doesn’t stop them claiming that the poll shows that the UK is Christian! In fact, in other surveys the numbers of non-believers are a little smaller, but not by much. The latest wave of the World Values Survey, for example, found that 28% of Brits do not believe in god and 40% do not believe in life after death (i.e. are not Christian, Muslim or Jewish).

Theos scored another own goal back in 2006 with a survey in which 42% agreed with Dawkin’s statement that faith is “one of the world’s great evils, comparable to the smallpox virus but harder to eliminate”.

With enemies like these, who needs friends!

Hat tip: A Thinking Man

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