Some religions spread by neighbour, some by war and some by convenience or coercion

Some religions spread by neighbour, some by war and some by convenience or coercion

But underneath there is a commonality.

Why do people want/need faith?

  • They want to belong to a group. In a world of storms or animals who predate on humans who are alone when they’re hungry it’s easier to cope when you have people to help. And it’s also easier to find a mate and have children when you have a group to choose from and their support.
  • They want to explain the world, and having a creator god in charge makes it easier to deal with the things they don’t know.
  • Having a group is better when you’re poor. Whether by nation or faith group, poor people need someone to turn to when the floor falls out from under them. And faith groups are easier to get charity from than the nations are.

Why do people argue about religion/faith/spirituality when they agree on so many larger principles?

  • (love, peace, social justice, community, sharing goods and resources, the value of prayer, that there is a god(s), and we have a soul.)
  • (we should live a moral and fair life where we do no harm)
  • (they practice in temples, by saying prayers, feasting and fasting, have high holy days, and sages who guide their way)

Why are people as individuals willing to kill to spread their own POV, to impose it on others?

(and you can’t say they aren’t because they follow the priests and kings who ask for war in the name of power, slaves and land)
I don’t know. Hate? Xenophobia?

And here we are.

In a day when we know the history of the world, claim to be enlightened and value logic and science over all, why do people still think we have to spread faith by the sword? Well today by the missile and the gun.

And why are we willing to allow entire peoples to be wiped out to have our faith be supreme? Do we think that our god(s) are proud of us?

Deeper questions than which prayer service you’ll attend or if you’ll only go a couple times a year on high holidays. Or what your $$s are used for in your community and how much goes to the temple’s leaders for their feather-lined nests. But now and then, don’t you think they need to be asked?

especially this one – What do we allow our leaders to ask of us in the name of God?

…… resources

categories of religions

….. maps

several maps

….. time lapse maps

….. list of major religions/spiritual philosophies

The world’s 20 largest religions and their number of believers are:

  1. Christianity (2.1 billion)
    Most historians believe that Jesus was a real person who was born between 2 B.C. and 7 B.C. in Bethlehem, south of Jerusalem. Christianity began after his death.
  • The Crusades were a series of religious wars between Christians and Muslims started primarily to secure control of holy sites considered sacred by both groups. In all, eight major Crusade expeditions occurred between 1096 and 1291
  1. Islam (1.3 billion)
    Muhammad] was the founder of Islam and the proclaimer of the Qurʾān, Islam’s sacred scripture. He spent his entire life in what is now the country of Saudi Arabia, from his birth about 570 CE in Mecca to his death in 632 in Medina.
  1. Nonreligious (Secular/Agnostic/Atheist) (1.1 billion)
  2. Hinduism (900 million)
    Most scholars believe Hinduism started somewhere between 2300 B.C. and 1500 B.C. in the Indus Valley, near modern-day Pakistan. But many Hindus argue that their faith is timeless and has always existed.
  3. Chinese traditional religion (394 million)
    In China, religious beliefs are evident in the Yangshao Culture of the Yellow River Valley, which prospered between 5000-3000 BCE.
  4. Buddhism (376 million)
    founded by Siddhartha Gautama (“the Buddha”) more than 2,500 years ago in India.
  5. Primal-indigenous (300 million)
  6. African traditional and Diasporic (100 million)
  7. Sikhism (23 million)
    established by Guru Nanak (1469–1539) in the Punjab region of the Indian subcontinent
  8. Juche (19 million)
    the revised constitution of 1982 adopted ‘Juche’ as the official ruling ideology of North Korea. In 1974, ‘Juche’ was officially renamed ‘Kim Il-sung-ism’ (or simply ‘Kimism’), as “a new and unique system of revolutionary thought, theory, and methodology that reflects the needs arising from an era of self-reliance”
  9. Spiritism (15 million)
  10. Judaism (14 million)
    Abraham (flourished early 2nd millennium BCE)
  11. Bahai (7 million)
    founded from Islam in Iraq in the mid-19th century by Mīrzā Ḥosayn ʿAlī Nūrī, who is known as Bahāʾ Allāh (Arabic: “Glory of God”).
  12. Jainism (4.2 million)
    Jainism originated in the 7th–5th century bce in the Ganges basin of eastern India,
  13. Shinto (4 million)
    In the late 6th century AD the name Shinto was created for the native religion of Japan, originating in prehistoric times,
  14. Cao Dai (4 million)
    movement founded by Ngô Văn Chiêu in Vietnam in 1926. It mixes ideas from other religions.
  15. Zoroastrianism (2.6 million)
    founded in Persia in the 6th century BCE by the priest Zarathustra,
  16. Tenrikyo (2 million)
    Japan – founded in the late 1830’s by Nakayama Miki,
  17. Neo-Paganism (1 million)
  18. Unitarian-Universalism (800,000)
    list source
    more info

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