Heavy Metal has officially been recognised as a religion in the UK.
Results for the 2011 census have just been published, and a campaign
and rockstars like Saxon
's Bill Byford
helped rally an effort to get Heavy Metal recognised as a belief.
Now it's officially a bigger religion that scientology, druidism, shamanism and other well-established beliefs, thanks to 6,000 metal-loving Brits.
The Jedi Knights
were more successful, though, with 176,000 people jokingly listing it as their religion.
Interestingly, Christianity has shot down to 59% of the UK population, compared to 72% who listed it as their religion in 2001. People with no religion represent 25% of the country compared to 15% ten years ago, according to the Guardian
But there may be one tangible side effect of these joke entries on the official UK census.
Religious authorities are likely to bundle the "joke" religions into one global figure for people with religious beliefs. The effect is that more government money will be spent on religion, which probably wasn't the intention of the census pranksters.
What do you think of the decline in serious religious beliefs? Is it fitting that heavy metal has been recognised as a belief in the country it was born? Share your thoughts in the comments.
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