Nimbin is Australia’s atheist capital.
Nimbin is Australia’s atheist capital.

NIMBIN is the atheist capital of Australia according to 2011 census data which shows only 41% of residents reported a religious affiliation.

The next most godless areas were inner-city suburbs Darlington in NSW with only 43% indicating a specific faith and Clifton in Victoria on 47%, according to census data.

Remote Aboriginal communities were among the most religious.

Atheist Foundation of Australia vice president Michael Boyd said Nimbin's results were not surprising given that hippies were the first to buck established norms in the 1960s.

"I guess it reflects the fact that people in Nimbin question things a bit more," Mr Boyd said.

Nimbin Hemp Embassy president Michael Balderstone said locals were highly spiritual but not drawn to the mainstream church.

"I'm a total believer. I love Jesus but I hate what the church has done to the message," Mr Balderstone said.

The Uniting Church, Presbyterian, Catholics and Anglicans have representation in Nimbin.

But the congregations were small and mostly comprised of retirees, admits local Anglican Church warden Faye Scherf.

Mrs Scherf said she was disappointed about Nimbin's lack of regard for religion but "people are entitled to their own opinion".

"People who don't believe in anything are lost souls," the 82-year-old said.

"I think we all have to have something to believe in whether we call it God or Buddha or what.

"There's definitely a Christian influence out here but it's not a big one."

She said she felt very at home in Nimbin regardless.



GALLERY: Burnt out fire truck

premium_icon GALLERY: Burnt out fire truck

The RFS truck will probably be written off.

"Someone could have been injured or killed"

premium_icon "Someone could have been injured or killed"

An RFS crew sheltered in their truck as the grass fire overcame them

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