The Archbishop of Canterbury must hear this: Britain is the most godless nation on earth! Tell it at Anglican Church. Say it at Buckingham Palace. This is not “A Revisionist History of Britain” by Philip Roth. Nor is it a posthumous work entitled “The Ghost of Anne Boleyn” written by King Henry VIII and published by Hades press. But it is the naked truth. (As if truth wears pants.)
This may appear surprising to many. Just as it is easy—very simple—to flunk exams in these days of stranger than fiction occurrences. Who ever thought that the Berlin Wall would tumble, for instance? Or that U.S.S.R. would be “Balkanized” and communism would be no more. (I hope Castro is not reading this.) Or did you ever think that Saddam’s deadly nukes would “disappear” under watchful eyes of Bush and Blair? I can’t even keep up with the pace of change in this world.
Now test your knowledge with these questions. Is it possible to find tropical birds in polar regions? Or can a young boy Auckland, New Zealand be madly in love with a girl who he has not seen in Amsterdam, Netherlands?
Of course, if you answer no to the above questions, it goes to say that you do not know a single thing. And I do not feel sorry for you because I am most to be pitied.
Now take some lecture. You are wrong because eagles are about now diving into the waters of the Arctic Ocean and coming out with big fishes on their beaks. (No thanks to global warming.) And the love-stuck boy in Auckland could “feel” the long hair of his girl friend and look into her blues eyes in far away Amsterdam. (Thanks to Internet and web cam.)
But wait a moment. How did glorious Britain come to earn the inglorious epithet: the most godless nation on earth?
Not that the title is anything new. For example, there is the most violent nation, the most corrupt nation, and many more. In fact, it appears that there is a sobriquet for every country on earth. Indeed Britain has two titles, having previously been named the Dirty Old Man of Europe, owing to the high rate of industrial pollution in that country. Commenting on the pollution of River Mersey, the Liverpool Daily Post reported that “anyone unlucky enough to fall into the river is likely to be taken sick to hospital.” But why is Britain said to be godless?
This was the result of a poll of 10,000 people in ten countries. In that poll conducted by The Times of London, Britain was found to be “among the most godless…, with the lowest levels of religious belief and activities.” How did Great Britain, the country of John Wycliffe, the Morning Star of the reformation, come to be this way? Consider the poll closely.
Forty-six percent of Britons said that they had always believed in God while only two countries, Russia and the Republic of South Korea had fewer believers. While more that 90 percent of people in Nigeria, Indonesia, and Lebanon believed that their god was the one true God, only 3 out of 10 in Britain felt equally. In majority if the countries more that 80 percent said that belief in God makes one a better person, but just 56 percent of Britons subscribed to that. Inasmuch as 85 percent in the Unites States, 99 percent in Indonesia and 83 percent in Mexico believed God created the universe, but the figure was as low as 52 percent in Britain. When asked whether the world would be more peaceful without religion, 6 percent in United States, 9 percent in India, and 11 percent in Israel said yes, but in Britain, it was as high as 29 percent!
The summary of the poll is therefore as follows: Britons do not believe in God. They do not agree that their god was the one true god. They refuse to accept that believe in God makes one a better person. They doubt that God created the universe. And finally they would not want to do anything with religion.
Exactly when Britons became unbelievers, we do not know. But we do know that Great Britain had her fingers in ungodly things throughout her history—from the crusades to the inquisition, and the Thirty Years’ War, and the two world wars. As for the total number of deaths in all these unholy acts—whether speared to death or roasted with their Bibles tied to their chests—only God knows.
Not that wars and the mass murder of people have ceased. Rather they have escalated. And in almost all the recent conflicts, be it in Bosnia or Rwanda, religion is to blame. There appears to be no exit strategy for man. Yet, the world claims to be religious.
Perhaps Britain is right in saying to dump religion. People in America and Europe are loosing faith in God and are waving goodbyes to the churches, which are fast being converted to restaurants and disco centers. According to one report, “the great cathedrals of Europe [serve] not as houses of worship but as museums, empty of all tourists.”
The same could be true where you live. Or it could be that your people are religious but crime, violence, and wickedness are on the increase. Where then is your godliness? And why do you single out Queen Elizabeth’s kingdom?
So, hear me Great Britain: Take heart. It is a godless world!
Arthur Zulu is an editor, book reviewer, and author of Chasing Shadows!, How to Write a Best-seller, A Letter to Noah, and many others. For his works and free help for writers, goto:
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About the Author
Arthur Zulu is an editor, book reviewer, and published author.