UK secularism on rise as more than half say they have no religion


EXCERPT: . . . The steady decline in religious belief among the British public [...] Fifty-two percent of the public say they do not belong to any religion, compared with 31% in 1983 when the BSA survey began tracking religious belief. The number of people identifying as Christian has fallen from 66% to 38% over the same period.

“Britain is becoming more secular not because adults are losing their religion but because older people with an attachment ... to ... Christian denominations are gradually being replaced in the population by younger unaffiliated people,” says the report. “To put it another way, religious decline in Britain is generational...”

Non-religious parents successfully transmit their lack of faith to their children, but two religious parents have only a 50/50 chance of passing on their faith, the report says. The non-religious are increasingly atheist. One in four members of the public stated: “I do not believe in God,” compared with one in 10 in 1998. The figures challenge theories that people are “believing but not belonging” – in other words, that faith has become private rather than institutional – the report says.

The proportion of people who say they are “very or extremely non-religious” has more than doubled, from 14% to 33% in the past two decades. Nevertheless, most people are tolerant of others’ religious beliefs. (MORE - details)
My reaction remains the same as it was in this thread:

I'm still not convinced that religious adherence numbers accurately measure religiosity.

What seems to me to be happening in Britain (especially in England) is that more and more people are alienated from the Church of England and no longer are willing to claim adherence to it. Since most of these formerly C of E people aren't switching to membership in some other denomination like the RC's, it leaves them 'nones' in terms of church membership, regardless of what their religious ideas may or may not be.

That being said, I do expect that atheism is on the rise. Perhaps agnosticism even more so, at least among the more thoughtful and sophisticated individuals. But probably not quite to the same degree as the drop in adherence figures suggest.
I'd say that many people identify as spiritual (me) or believers in God (me), but don't necessarily adhere or identify with any one religion, or follow the trappings of religion.

I'm skeptical that these studies and such look at church attendances and make a snap judgement based on that, assuming that the decline in those numbers automatically points to an increase in secularism or atheism. But, atheism is on the rise...I believe it's the third largest group, behind Christianity and Islam.
(Jul 14, 2019 06:46 PM)Leigha Wrote: But, atheism is on the rise...I believe it's the third largest group, behind Christianity and Islam.

Third largest is this: "Irreligious includes agnostic, atheist, secular believer, and people having no formal religious adherence." -

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