As religious fundamentalists gain influence in the UK, I’m pleased to note that six out of ten Scots have rejected organised religion


According to a ScotCen survey, there has been a dramatic spike in the abandonment of organised religion by Scots in the last two years. I’ll leave you to ponder and, if you like, suggest why. See the graph above for the details:

It’s kind of interesting that this should emerge as the Old Testament-quoting but relatively tame DUP gain influence at Westminster and as we witness with horror the spread of terror supposedly inspired by religion, in Manchester and London.

I must be clear at the outset that I respect the rights of individuals to hold a faith and that I do not blame them for the actions of clearly disturbed self-identifying co-religionists. Stop invading and bombing the Arabs! I know that there are a lot of good people in the Scottish churches and mosques. I just happen to follow the wisdom of ideas taken from socialism, anarchism, Marx (Groucho), the Dude in the Big Lebowski, Frankie Boyle, the Proclaimers and Kurt Vonnegut – so it goes.

These results confirm that Scotland is the place where most don’t follow a religion. Makes me proud that. You’ll no doubt guess that the most sort of religious place in the UK is just across the water in Northern Ireland with nearly 90% identifying with a faith.

Confusingly, this survey by Unilad also in 2016 offer these results but we’re still top:

Here’s each region’s percentage of identifying as having ‘no religion’:

Scotland – 36.7 per cent

Wales – 32.1 per cent

South West – 29.3 per cent

East of England – 27.9 per cent

South East – 27.7 per cent

East Midlands – 27.5 per cent

Yorkshire and the Humber – 25.9 per cent

North East – 23.4 per cent

West Midlands – 22.0 per cent

London – 20.7 per cent

North West – 19.8 per cent

Northern Ireland – 10.1 per cent

Finally, out of interest, here’s a 2010 graphic for the whole of Europe. We’re in good company?


Just in passing, I doubt the Irish figure is so high now.


6 thoughts on “As religious fundamentalists gain influence in the UK, I’m pleased to note that six out of ten Scots have rejected organised religion

  1. daibhidhdeux July 1, 2017 / 3:27 pm

    Amen to these findings. Perhaps when we Scots abandon the Shibboleth that is the Union Treaty, our abandonment of the mass psychosis that is organized religion impacting on civil society and free intellectual enquiry will climb even higher whilst respecting folk’s personal belief systems?

    Hallelujah to these prospects, brothers and sisters, and may they rock on in the stats charts as Jesus and sundry other prophets might have posited.


  2. Contrary July 1, 2017 / 7:56 pm

    the bottom map is the percentage population that believe in a god – I was a bit confused after the first section was % with no religion, but it is probably obvious to most people. I have never been entirely convinced that organised religion has got anything to do with believing in the deity of your choice. It always seems to those that shout loudest about what sect they belong to have the least integrity. Most people appear to like to belong to a group though, and there are claims (from USA) that you live longer if you belong to a religious group – that claim is a bit facile though, because it is the society that acts in a caring way and is inclusive that helps longevity. Humanists are also a credible replacement group.

    Do you remember the greater number of close communities we had in Scotland before Maggie Thatcher came along with her every-man-for-himself philosophies?

    So, why is there still this big elephant in the room of sectarianism? Why the combative hate attitude? We are not ruled by religious overlords, all religious laws have been removed from the legislature, there is no reason to hate someone because they believe something different from you in this country. I’ve been checking out the motion James Kelly has put forward, the MSP that wants to repeal the offensive behaviour act,,, I want to attempt to embed him talking in members questions (I’ve read the instructions which say I can do it, but can’t try it without putting it onto a website,,,

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Contrary July 1, 2017 / 8:11 pm

    Hmm, well, I will have to wait and see if the video clip thing works, but,,,
    James Kelly is banging on about repealing something that we need to make our country a better, safer place, but has no viable replacement. He claims current laws are adequate,,, well, they have worked well for the past hundred or so years, haven’t they? Why on earth is he pursuing this, and how does his claim of the repeal bill having a lot of support equate with all polls and statistics saying the majority of people are in favour of the law? Consultations, in general, only get a few responses, I don’t now how many this bill has gotten, but it seems unlikely to have been looked at by any member of the public that does not have possibly extreme sectarian views.

    Ah, it is evening time, in Glasgow, after the orange walk. And I hear them loud and clear. Time to batten the hatches. To think such a public display of hatred is still allowed, accepted, in this day and age is unbelievable. The Glasgow community police has come into a wee bit of criticism for this tweet:
    Making the orange walk sound like a family fun day out, instead of the toxic event it is. There are other ways to express your beliefs, in a way that does not disrupt the entire city/town, is not intimidating, and does not cost society so much.

    I am planning to write to Patrick Harvie about the difference between freedom of speech and freedom of offensive behaviour, in fact I got distracted when looking up his email address there. Maybe tomorrow.

    Liked by 1 person

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