I find that most of my friends and aquaintances are atheists, or at the very least not religious. I live in Sidney which is on Vancouver island.
When I visited Canada I found it in many ways similar to the UK and in other ways similar to the USA, so maybe the secular values have come from the UK but they haven't quite made it to atheism. I wasn't there long, but Canada seemed like a more relaxed and accepting country than the USA.
Well, i was born in Canada and i'm an atheist. I actually came to the States when i was 3 and grew up here, although i had many relatives in Canada and spent a fair amount of time there. For the most part, Canadians tend to be much lower key than Americans, and i'm not sure what percentage of them are atheists, but i do know that from what i saw in Canada, there sure wasn't the crazed fanatics that religion causes down here in the States.
I don't know either but I sure would like to know what is fuelling the liberal attitude in the country recently. I tend to think of liberalism as secular values trumping religious values, such as Ireland voting against the Catholic Church in the gay marriage and abortion referenda. But maybe I'm wrong - maybe modern Christians see liberal values as the core of Christianity, loving your neighbour as yourself and not judging so that you are not judged.
I lived in the Comox Valley on the north end of the island back in the 1990's and I'm a 9th generation Canadian so I can tell you with a fair degree of confidence that most Canadians are not Atheists although it does vary by region and it's a very big country with a lot of regions, 2nd largest country in the world after Russia actually.
Surveys show that on average the percentage of non-religiously affiliated Canadians is about the same as for Americans, about 1 in 4. What we don't seem to have as many of is religious fundamentalists and those we do have are naturally - More Polite- than some of the nut job fundamentalists in the US of A. The overwhelming, no holds barred, nobody else even comes close Religion in Canada is of course - HOCKEY! Hockey Night in Canada marks the beginning of the Sabbath on Saturday night and services are held throughout the week when one includes away games.
Vancouver Island is probably not representative of Canada as a whole, Vancouver Islanders have been talking about separating from British Columbia for ages and barely qualify as Canadians, a bit like Puerto Rico for you Americans, only more polite, unless it's the play offs.
the Canadian situation is much the same as the American one... only we don't have the guns to exert pressure on small groups...Agnostic/Atheist leanings are low percentage but we have discovered that living in a more secular society does much for acceptance of different...
I think a lot "identify" with the religion that they grew up with, but they don't buy into the rhetoric. The pull of wanting to believe in something bigger is very strong, so I think that although they might not subscribe to organized religion, complete Atheism is a pretty frightening prospect for most. At least in my experience.