Sunday, 27 March 2011

Religion: A Hollow Victory?

A very interesting, if unsurprising, result of a recent poll by British Humanist Association (BHA)...

I say "unsurprising" because it is obvious, even to genuinely religious people, that a huge number of those who will tick the "belong to a religion" box are not in actual fact religious. Rather, they are merely stating the fact that their cultural (and possibly other) traditions stem from, or have been historically moulded or influenced by, a religion of one kind of another (mostly Christian in these parts, but that is beside the point). So, again, the UK 2011 census questionnaire got it wrong, at least in part, by not following up "do you belong to a religion" with a "are you religious" question. So, again, faith organisations all over Britain will rejoice in receiving more funding than they really should if their respective faiths were judged by actual believers, and not by people who can vaguely trace their identity to a particular religious institution (rather than religious belief). But, I think that this victory whatever spin churches put on it, and whatever amount of resource is wasted in perpetuating their misguided and false claims, is a hollow victory, and we - as human race - should take pride in more and more people seeing the world as it is, rather than as purveyors of binding fairy tales would want them to.

And as for me, I'm off to tick my "have no religion" box on the census form. What will you do? It's not too late...