Atheism      
     

              Atheism

 

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Atheism is characterized by an absence of belief in the existence of gods. This absence of belief generally comes about either through deliberate choice, or from an inherent inability to believe religious teachings which seem literally incredible. It is not a lack of belief born out of simple ignorance of religious teachings.

Some atheists go beyond a mere absence of belief in gods: they actively believe that particular gods, or all gods, do not exist. Just lacking belief in Gods is often referred to as the "weak atheist" position; whereas believing that gods do not (or cannot) exist is known as "strong atheism."

Basic Tenets of Atheism

Presuppositions are important to us all.  We look at the world through them.  The atheist has a set of presuppositions, too.  There is no definitive atheist organization that defines the absolutes of atheism, but that doesn't mean there aren't some common basic principles that atheists, as a whole, tend to adopt.

Pease note, however, that not all atheists accept all of these tenets. The only absolute common one they hold to is that they do not believe in a God or gods.


  • There is no God or devil.
  • There is no supernatural realm.
  • Miracles cannot occur.
  • There is no such thing as sin as a violation of God's will.
  • Generally, the universe is materialistic and measurable.
  • Man is material.
  • Generally, evolution is considered a scientific fact.
  • Ethics and morals are relative

Atheists Today:


Below is a list of the top twenty countries containing the largest measured percentage of people who identify as atheist, agnostic, or non-believer in God. These figures do not necessarily represent the number of people who are identify themselves as ‘atheists’. Those who state they do not believe in God, do not necessarily also categorise themselves as ‘atheist’.

Top 20 Countries
With Largest Numbers of Atheists / Agnostics

Country Total country
population (2004) % Atheist/
Agnostic/
Nonbeliever in God Number of Atheists/
Agnostics
Nonbelievers in God
(minimum - maximum)
China 1,298,848,000 8 - 14% 103,907,840 - 181,838,720
Japan 127,333,000 64 - 65% 81,493,120 - 82,766,450
Russia 143,782,000 24 - 48% 34,507,680 - 69,015,360
Vietnam 82,690,000 81% 66,978,900
Germany 82,425,000 41 - 49% 33,794,250 - 40,388,250
France 60,424,000 43 - 54% 25,982,320 - 32,628,960
USA 293,028,000 3 - 9% 8,790,840 - 26,822,520
Britain 60,271,000 31 - 44% 18,684,010 - 26,519,240
South Korea 48,598,000 30 - 52% 14,579,400 - 25,270,960
Canada 32,508,000 19 - 30% 6,176,520 - 9,752,400
Spain 40,281,000 15 - 24% 6,042,150 - 9,667,440
Ukraine 47,732,000 20% 9,546,400
Italy 58,057,000 6 - 15% 3,483,420 - 8,708,550
Sweden 8,986,000 46 - 85% 4,133,560 - 7,638,100
Netherlands 16,318,000 39 - 44% 6,364,020 - 7,179,920
Czech Republic 10,246,100 54 - 61% 5,328,940 - 6,250,121
Taiwan 22,750,000 24% 5,460,000
Australia 19,913,000 24 - 25% 4,779,120 - 4,978,250
Hungary 10,032,000 32 - 46% 3,210,240 - 4,614,720
Belgium 10,348,000 42 - 43% 4,346,160 - 4,449,640
Source: Zuckerman, Phil. "Atheism: Contemporary Rates and Patterns", chapter in The Cambridge Companion to Atheism, ed. by Michael Martin, Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, UK (2005).

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