National Atheist Day

Observed annually on April 1st, National Atheist Day is a day when people may celebrate their lack of belief in the existence of God or any of the many gods that exist. About 2% of the world’s population does not believe in the existence of gods or follow any religion.

Although the calendar is filled with feast days and other religious holidays, there are very few holidays dedicated to people who do not believe in gods or religion, and this is one such holiday. It’s a day when people can enjoy their own disbelief, or if they feel up to it, have a spirited debate with one of their religious friends or relatives.

The History of National Atheist Day

This holiday began as an Internet hoax that spun out of control and became its own holiday. The hoax began to circulate around the World Wide Web in 2003 and basically tells the story of a Florida atheist who requested the local ACLU to help with a case of discrimination imposed on atheists by religious festivals.

According to the story, not having an atheist holiday was discriminatory to atheists because there are so many Christian and other religious holidays on the calendar. The story goes on to say that the judge in the case stated that since April 1st was April Fool’s Day, it should also be National Atheist Day. Many people believed this story and began circulating it around the Internet. The result is a holiday that’s now celebrated every April 1st.

Observing National Atheist Day

For most atheists, National Atheist Day is a holiday on which they do not have to do anything. It’s a day to avoid thinking about holidays at all and just spend some time with friends and family.

Since it’s not an official holiday anywhere, it’s not a day off for most people, so daily activities continue normally. While some atheists may choose to engage religious people on this day to try to debunk their positions, for most atheists, it’s just another day on the calendar.

When is it?
This year (2024)
April 1 Monday
Next year (2025)
April 1 Tuesday
Last year (2023)
April 1 Saturday
Culture & History