Photo Credits: ITV
British Social Attitudes report shows that more than half people in United Kingdom no longer affiliate with an organized religion; precisely the number is 52%. This is bigger number than ever before and also there are 33% of those who are "very" or "extremely" unreligious which is a big rise comparing to 14% of those who felt the same way in 1998. There has also been a decline in the proportion of people who identify with Christianity. This decline is not a private matter of some individuals or families; this is rather a trend with further implications for everyday life. Along with a shift away from religion, there is much more confidence in science and technology among people and that provides an alternative way of understanding the world.
One important note is that every generation is less religious than the one before. “Britain is becoming more secular not because adults are losing their religion but because older people with an attachment to the Church of England and other Christian denominations are gradually being replaced in the population by younger unaffiliated people,” says the report, according to Patheos. “To put it another way, religious decline in Britain is generational; people tend to be less religious than their parents, and on average their children are even less religious than they are.”
People are relatively tolerant of personal faith, Christianity in particular; but they are more and more skeptical about the role of religion in everyday life and in wider society. According to the British Social Attitudes report, "almost two-thirds (63%) agree with the idea that ‘looking around the world, religions bring more conflict than peace,’ while only 13% disagree. Forty-six percent have some degree of confidence in Churches and religious organizations, while a fifth (21%) say they have “no confidence at all.” As our society has become more secular, the role of religious institutions and religious identities in determining our moral and social norms has weakened."
Religion has been challenged by other worldviews and while it was sometimes an answer to every question and every mystery of the world, modern society has found other sources of knowledge and wisdom and religion is not needed as it was before. Scientific rationalism and liberal individualism, worldviews that are gaining popularity in British society according to the report, are shaping how people understand the world, make decisions and relate to each other. There is no need for religion and its teachings to shape and create norms. So as a result, it is becoming less popular in Britain and many other countries.