Top 10 Countries With Large Atheist/Agnostic Population

The article examines the top 10 countries with the largest atheist/agnostic populations, according to the following resource:

Zuckerman, Phil. “Atheism: Contemporary Rates and Patterns”, chapter in The

Cambridge Companion to Atheism, ed. by Michael Martin, Cambridge University Press:

Cambridge, UK (2005).

The definition of atheism varies from theorist to theorist. However, it is widely seen as the belief of no god or higher being. Agnostics believe that there is something but do not what is out there. Unlike with atheists, they can be persuaded with actual factual proof.

 

1. China:

China has 103,907,840 to 181,838,720 atheists/agnostics living in the country. This calculates to approximately 8-14% of the total population. This became prevalent during the establishment of the People’s Republic of China in 1949. Before that, the Chinese were predominately Buddhist (90%).

 

2. Japan:

Japan has 81,493,120 to 82,766,450 atheists/agnostics living in the country. This calculates to approximately 64-65% of the total population.

 

3. Russia:

Russia has 34,507,680 – 69,015,360 atheists/agnostics living in the country. This calculates to approximately 24-48% of the total population. Atheism was first employed by Stalin in what is called military atheism. He violently attacked religious and disenfranchised churches.

 

4. Vietnam:

Vietnam has 66,978,900 atheists/agnostics living in the country. This calculates to approximately 81% of the total population. The constitution of Vietnam, enacted in 1980 allowed people the freedom of worship.

 

5. Germany:

Germany

Germany has 33,794,250 – 40,388,250 atheists/agnostics living in the country. This calculates to approximately 41-49% of the total population. It is home to Emmanuel Kant and Karl Marx, who both were atheists/agnostics. Kant widely criticized religious morality.

 

6. France:

France

France has 25,982,320 – 32,628,960 atheists/agnostics living in the country. This calculates to approximately 43-54% of the total population. State atheism was first proposed in France during the French Revolution. Jacques Hebert successfully proposed the idea. French Salons of the Enlightenment Era were quite secular as well.

 

7. United States:

The United States has 8,790,840 – 26,822,520 atheists/agnostics living in the country. This calculates to approximately 3-9% of the total population. More men than woman are atheist and agnostic. Furthermore those who are under 35 comprise a significant percentage of atheists/agnostics.

 

8. Great Britain:

Great Britain has 18,684,010 – 26,519,240 atheists/agnostics living in the country. This calculates to approximately 31-44% of the total population. The movement began with a pamphlet distributed in criticism of Dr Priestley’s Letters to a Philosophical Unbeliever during the age of Enlightenment.

 

9. South Korea:

South Korea has 14,579,400 – 25,270,960 atheists/agnostics living in the country. This calculates to approximately 30-52% of the total population.

 

10. Canada:

Canada has 6,176,520 – 9,752,400 atheists/agnostics living in the country. This calculates to approximately 19-30% of the total population. According to a study done by Bibby, 6% of Canadians stated that they do not believe in god.

 

Resource:

Bibby, Reginald. 2002. Restless Gods: The Renaissance of Religion in Canada. Toronto,

Canada: Stoddart Publishing Company

 

About The Author

  • Jenna

    Try 47% of Canadians do not believe in a god. I think your stats are skewed.

  • Halidom

    I think your wrong about agnostics believing there is something out there. Agnostic believe in what can be proved. So they don’t say there is no God but that there is a possibility. It’s like saying there is a possibility that a tea cup is orbiting Mars. Anything is possible compare the way we live today. Go back 200 years and everyone would think you were crazy if you described our way of life.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agnosticism

  • http://www.atheistcensus.com Paul King

    Stand up and be counted by signing the official ATHEIST CENSUS online. Do it now.

  • Halidom

    I think most stats about how many people are religious are very inaccurate. I think many people mark the census form ticking a religion out of habit. If we went by a head count at religious services the number would drop dramatically. Not that all religious people attend services. I believe many think there is a bit of a stigma to being a non-theist. You also seem to think Buddhism is a religion. They have no deity it’s a way of life

  • Erik

    While about half of Swedes say they believe in a god, a higher being or life force, you will be hard-pressed to find a country where religion has less influence on politics and everyday life. While some people in Sweden will say they believe – or want to believe – in a higher being when asked in polls, it doesn’t affect their decisions or actions; it doesn’t make them go to church or base opinions on religious considerations. And most of those who say they are religious today are old. Sweden is without doubt one of the least religious countries in the world.