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Ask An Atheist: Where is Atheism Found?


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By Jim Downard

In what regions is atheism generally found?

Now in most of the places on Earth it can still get you dangerously in trouble (including getting killed) to be an atheist, but that is also true of being a believer differing from the majority state-supported religion, so on that people of faith and atheists can be nervous together.  There is no indication that the incidence of atheism presently or historically has been any different (probably around a few single digit percentage points of the population).  It is the case though that only in the last few centuries has it become possible for non-believers to be more open about their non-belief, without running the risk of having their head chopped off or be burned at the stake.

Regarding why atheism arises in any region or context, so long as there are allegedly sacred books and people are allowed to read them, and have the curiosity and opportunity to fact check them, there will be fodder for atheism.


About Jim Downard

Jim Downard
Jim Downard is a Spokane native (with a sojourn in Southern California back in the early 1960s) who was raised in a secular family, so says had no personal faith to lose. He's always been a history and science buff (getting a bachelor's in the former area at what was then Eastern Washington University in the early 1970s).

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