Conflict, theology and history make Muslims more religious than others, experts say
A recent global survey suggests that Muslims are more religious than Christians and Hindus.
December 3rd, 2011
10:00 PM ET

Conflict, theology and history make Muslims more religious than others, experts say

By Richard Allen Greene, CNN

(CNN) - Every religion has its true believers and its doubters, its pious and its pragmatists, but new evidence suggests that Muslims tend to be more committed to their faith than other believers.

Muslims are much more likely than Christians and Hindus to say that their own faith is the only true path to paradise, according to a recent global survey, and they are more inclined to say their religion is an important part of their daily lives.

Muslims also have a much greater tendency to say their religion motivates them to do good works, said the survey, released over the summer by Ipsos-Mori, a British research company that polls around the world.

Islam is the world's second-largest religion - behind Christianity and ahead of Hinduism, the third largest. With some 1.5 billion followers and rising, Islam's influence may be growing even faster than its numbers as the Arab Spring topples long-reigning secular rulers and opens the way to religiously inspired political parties.

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But while there's no doubt about the importance of Islam, experts have different theories about why Muslims appear to be more religious than members of other global faiths - and contrasting views on whether to fear the depth of Muslims' commitment to their faith.

One explanation lies in current affairs, says Azyumardi Azra, an expert on Islam in Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim majority country.

Many Muslims increasingly define themselves in contrast with what they see as the Christian West, says Azra, the director of the graduate school at the State Islamic University in Jakarta.

"When they confront the West that they perceive or misperceive as morally in decline, many Muslims feel that Islam is the best way of life. Islam for them is the only salvation," he says.

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That feeling has become stronger since the September 11 attacks, as many Muslims believe there is a "growing conflict between Islam and the so-called West," he says.

"Unfortunately this growing attachment to Islam among Muslims in general has been used and abused by literal-minded Muslims and the jihadists for their own purposes," he says.

But other experts say that deep religious commitment doesn't necessarily lead to violence.

"Being more religious doesn't necessarily mean that they will become suicide bombers," says Ed Husain, a former radical Islamist who is now a Middle East expert at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York.

In fact, Husain argues that religious upbringing "could be an antidote" to radicalism.

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The people most likely to become Islamist radicals, he says, are those who were raised without a religious education and came to Islam later, as "born-agains."

Muslims raised with a grounding in their religion are better able to resist the distortions of Islam peddled by recruiters to radical causes, some experts like Husain argue, making them less likely to turn to violence.

But he agrees that Muslims are strongly attached to their faith, and says the reason lies in the religion itself.

"Muslims have this mindset that we alone possess the final truth," Husain says.

Muslims believe "Jews and Christians went before us and Mohammed was the last prophet," says Husain, whose book "The Islamist" chronicles his experiences with radicals. "Our prophet aimed to nullify the message of the previous prophets."

The depth of the Muslim commitment to Islam is not only a matter of theology and current events, but of education and history, as well, other experts say.

"Where religion is linked into the state institutions, where religion is deeply ingrained from childhood, you are getting this feeling that 'My way is the only way,'" says Fiyaz Mughal, the director of Faith Matters, a conflict-resolution organization in London.

The Ipsos-Mori survey results included two countries with a strong link between religion and the state: Legally Muslim Saudi Arabia, which calls itself the guardian of Islam's two holiest sites, Mecca and Medina; and Indonesia, home of the world's largest Muslim population.

The third majority Muslim country in the study is Turkey, which has a very different relationship with religion. It was founded after World War I as a legally secular country. But despite generations of trying to separate mosque and state, Turkey is now governed by an Islam-inspired party, the AKP.

Turkey's experience shows how difficult it can be to untangle government and religion in Muslim majority countries and helps explain the Muslim commitment to their religion, says Azyumardi Azra, the Indonesia expert.

He notes that there has been no "Enlightenment" in Islam as there was in Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries, weakening the link between church and state in many Christian countries.

"Muslim communities have never experienced intense secularization that took place in Europe and the West in general," says Azra. "So Islam is still adhered to very strongly."

But it's not only the link between mosque and state in many Muslim majority countries that ties followers to their faith, says professor Akbar Ahmed, a former Pakistani diplomat who has written a book about Islam around the world.

Like Christians who wear "What Would Jesus Do?" bracelets, many Muslims feel a deep personal connection to the founder of their faith, the prophet Muhammad, he says.

Muhammad isn't simply a historical figure to them, but rather a personal inspiration to hundreds of millions of people around the world today.

"When a Muslim is fasting or is asked to give charity or behave in a certain way, he is constantly reminded of the example set by the prophet many centuries ago," argues Ahmed, the author of "Journey Into Islam: The Crisis of Globalization."

His book is based on interviews with Muslims around the world, and one thing he found wherever he traveled was admiration for Muhammad.

"One of the questions was, 'Who is your role model?' From Morocco to Indonesia, it was the prophet, the prophet, the prophet," says Ahmed, the Ibn Khaldun Chair of Islamic Studies at American University in Washington.

But while Ahmed sees similar patterns across the Islamic world, Ed Husain, the former radical, said it was important to understand its diversity, as well.

"There is no monolithic religiosity - Muslims in Indonesia and Saudi Arabia are following different versions of Islam," says Husain. "All we're seeing (in the survey) is an adherence to a faith."

Political scientist Farid Senzai, director of research at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding in Washington, raised questions about the survey's findings.

"Look at the countries that are surveyed - Saudi Arabia, Indonesia and Turkey," he says. "There are about 300 million Muslims in those three countries, (who make up) about 20% of Muslims globally."

Islam is "incredibly important" in Saudi Arabia, he says.

"But in Tunisia or Morocco you could have had a different result. It would have been nice if they had picked a few more Arab countries and had a bit more diversity," says Senzai.

The pollster, Ipsos-Mori, does monthly surveys in 24 countries, three of which are majority Muslim – Turkey, Indonesia and Saudi Arabia. The other countries range from India to the United States, and Mexico to South Korea, and are the same each month, regardless of the subject the pollsters are investigating.

In the survey released in July, about six in 10 Muslims in the survey said their religion was the only way to salvation, while only a quarter of Hindus and two out of 10 Christians made that claim about their own faiths.

More than nine out of 10 Muslims said their faith was important in their lives, while the figure was 86% for Hindus and 66% for Christians.

Ipsos-Mori surveyed 18,473 adults via an online panel in April and released the findings in July. Results were weighted to make the results as representative as possible, but the pollster cautioned that because the survey was conducted online, it was harder to get representative results in poorer countries where internet access is not widespread.

CNN polling director Keating Holland also warns that in an "opt-in" survey, where respondents actively choose to participate, results tend to come from "people who are confident in their opinions and express them openly... not good for intensely private matters like faith or income or sex."

Online surveys in countries that are not entirely free are also open to the possibility that pollsters get "the approved response" in those nations, "where the people who are most likely to be willing to talk about such matters are the ones who hold, or at least verbalize, opinions that won't get them in trouble if they are expressed," Holland says.

That may have been an issue in Saudi Arabia, where respondents were given the choice of not answering questions on religion due to their potential sensitivity in the kingdom. The Saudi sample was the smallest, with 354 participants, meaning "findings for Saudi Arabia must be treated with caution," Ipsos-Mori said.

About 1,000 people participated in most countries, but sample sizes were smaller in the three majority Muslim countries and in eight other countries.

The survey participants did not reflect the true percentage of Christians and Muslims in the world. Christians were over-represented – as were people who said they had no religion – and Muslims were under-represented.

Nearly half the respondents identified themselves as Christian. Eleven percent were Muslim, 4% were Buddhist, 3% were Hindu and 3% were "other." A quarter said they had no religion and 6% refused to say.

Fiyaz Mughal, the interfaith expert, argues that even though the countries surveyed might not be representative of the entire Muslim world, the findings about Muslims rang broadly true. Muslims in different countries were committed to their faith for different reasons, he says.

"Saudi Arabia is an institutionally religious state. Indonesia has religion tied into its culture," says Mughal.

But Muslim immigrants to Europe also show strong ties to their religion, either as a defense mechanism in the face of a perceived threat, or because of an effort to cling to identity, he contends.

He detects a link between insular communities and commitment to faith regardless of what religion is involved. It is prevalent in Muslim Saudi Arabia, but he has seen it among Israeli Jews as well, he says.

"The Israeli Jewish perspective is that (the dispute with the Palestinians) is a conflict of land and religion which are integrally linked," Mughal says.

"What does play a role in that scenario is a sense of isolationism and seclusion in Israeli Jewish religious communities, a growing trend to say, 'Our way is the only way,'" he says.

Religious leaders of all faiths need to combat those kinds of attitudes because of the greater diversity people encounter in the world today, he argues.

They have a responsibility to teach their congregations "that if they are following a religion, it is not as brutal or exclusive as possible," Mughal says. "Things are changing. The world is a different place from what it was even 20 years ago."

Politicians, too, "need to take these issues quite seriously," he says.

"In the Middle East there are countries - the Saudi Arabias - where you need to be saying that diversity, while it may not be a part of the country, is something they have to deal with when moving in a globalized area," he says.

But Senzai, the political scientist, says that it's also important for the West to take the Muslim world on its own terms.

"Many Muslims want religion to play a role in politics," he says. "To assume that everyone around the world wants to be like the West - that they want liberal secular democracy - is an absurd idea."

- CNN's Nima Elbagir and Atika Shubert contributed to this report.

- Newsdesk editor, The CNN Wire

Filed under: 9/11 • Islam • Middle East

soundoff (5,459 Responses)
  1. Dodo

    it is the religion for the idiots. For people who do not want to think critically and would rather live in a fantasy world. Also, they produce too many kids to out populate the natives and force everyone to change their religion into Islam.

    December 5, 2011 at 12:08 am |
  2. Eddie

    No they're not more religious.
    Just crazier and the most intolerant and hate spewing of all religions.
    Just look at how lawyers (wanting to represent him) mobbed the murderer of the governor (and garlanded him with flowers) who dared say a word in support of the poor woman who was facing the death penalty for blasphemy.
    Do you know any country that is not muslim that has the death penalty for "blasphemy".
    These people are the worst menaces and a real danger to the whole world

    December 5, 2011 at 12:07 am |
    • George

      No but some European countries have penalties for blasphemy.

      December 5, 2011 at 12:12 am |
  3. b4bigbang

    Yes, "There are things that dont lend themselves to the lab test"... things like leprechauns and fairies. We call those things fantasies and we use them to entertain children. But when we want an action to yield consistent results, we rely on verifiable evidence. There is nothing in your life, or daily existence that contributes to your sustainability that has not be measured, quantified and verified. In this modern age, to believe in children's stories as an adult is bordering on shameful. Then thats your shame. U r shaming many scientists who have the sense to know the diff btw their belief in God and animistic fairy belief.
    Eg, the creator of the big bang theory was a catholic priest, Newton rejected fairy tales but believed in God.
    U r way too quick to dismiss all non-materialistic occurences as fairy tales.

    December 5, 2011 at 12:06 am |
  4. Matthew

    Islam is a religion of slaves. Ishmael, the founder of Islam, descended from Hagaar, a slave of Abraham. There is little notion of "liberty" within Islam. According to Islam, you are born Muslim. You have no choice to embrace or reject your faith.

    God's promise flowed from Sarah, the freely chosen wife of Abraham. God grants salvation or "paradise" to the descendants of the free woman. Thus, "paradise" belongs to believers under liberty, not slavery. God does not adopt children who must work for Him. God adopts children who choose to work for Him.

    December 5, 2011 at 12:02 am |
    • Pillars Sevenof

      DODO ? Using that name, you want to be taken seriously? Ignorance is your game; angry prejudice given license by oblivious ignorance. how's it feel?

      December 5, 2011 at 12:11 am |
    • zedds

      Matthew, Im sorry for your logical reasoning, it's the very mind set that your predeccessors possess and they were the people most likely rotting in eternal hell for twisting god's words by prescribing Jesus (PBUH) as his son whereas the almighty cannot indulge in lowely passion of humans and animals alike to sire a son...

      December 5, 2011 at 12:12 am |
    • YeahItsMe72

      Thanks for clearing that up.

      Although I think you could have summarized your point with just 'All religions are made up BS'. But quoting a bizarre reference to an obscure paragraph I guess helps drive that point home.

      December 5, 2011 at 12:15 am |
    • zedds

      Matthew, Im sorry for your logical reasoning, it's the very mind set that your predeccessors possess and they were the people most likely rotting in eternal hell for twisting god's words by prescribing Jesus (PBUH) as his son whereas the almighty cannot indulge in lowely passion of humans and animals alike to sire a son...

      December 5, 2011 at 12:18 am |
    • Matthew

      Zedds, Jesus declared himself as the son of Father God. Other people only imagined of Jesus' coming. Jesus also claimed to have created the earth under the Father's command. These were factual claims heard by many during Jesus' time.

      December 5, 2011 at 1:25 am |
  5. serge

    Trade is increasing. Exchange of goods, exchange of ideas. In the most advanced countries in terms of mass education religion is losing ground. It is just a matter of time. Conservatisms are the most virulent when they are losing ground. The new generations in muslim countries are smarter than their elders. Only a minority holds extreme views and is loud and visible but declining. Let us not mistake media reports for reality. The world is moving inexorably forward and obscurantism, albeit highly visible, is on the decrease. Let us be a bit more optimistic about our human capacity to improve. For many Europeans now religion, not ethics, is a thing of the past. Even in the USA people are being less and less religious. Let us therefore be optimistic. The same is happening in muslim countries. Let us focus on science, and ways of living together in harmony. You don't have to be religious to believe that stealing or killing are bad. These are instinctual beliefs. Man is a gregarious animal that demands to live by social rules. Just think of how much outraged than adults children get at displays of asocial behavior. We do not need to be told (for most of us) how to behave ethically. We are ethical. Let us help our frightened neighbors to throw away their religions and live in harmony. I believe in us and our potential for intellectual and ethical growth. Reason will overcome!

    December 5, 2011 at 12:01 am |
  6. chuck wagon

    Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

    22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,

    23Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

    December 5, 2011 at 12:00 am |
  7. zedds

    Islam is a way of life acceptable to the almighty creator of the worlds Allah swat and not just an other religion like christianity, judaism or hinduism. We as muslims believe to receive the rewards of salvation from the almighty by adhering to our creator allah swat words as revealed to our prophet Muhammed (PBUH) by arch angel Gebrail...

    December 5, 2011 at 12:00 am |
  8. Answer

    As always the muslims come out spreading disinformation about themselves.

    They are "peaceful" ? Show it I say! By freeing your women. Free yourself with education. Free yourself of your hate for the West.
    In the past history of the people in China, what they lack to discover was the simple everyday and ordinary thing called "glass". They failed to look further than their main discovery of "porcelain". With that one setback they removed themselves from advancement by at least 2000 years. The same for the Middle East in their present state of 'sharia law'! They have their outdated sharia law still guiding them – what a shame. The laws that ATTRIBUTES the sole authority TO the human male! NEVER their female counterparts! In our Western society we have mediated, discussed and always revised rule of law – the best kind of law. True democracy! Til the muslims realize that this is their main failing of their culture they will be like the Chinese.

    No society wants to be looked down upon, but the whole society of evolution doesn't care. Muslims worldwide will perish at their own failures to modernize. When they all do, we'll just write them off in the history books as "good riddance". The same goes for religion – for it shall fall off the wayside too!

    Here's an analogy people to laugh on:

    "On the road of life a religious person will trip, into difficulty, over a rock. That person will pick up the first book and call it the book of truth. Their holy book is always the first – it's hilarious! They forsake all other books that are abound before their eyes."

    "The difference between a muslim and any "christ-follower" is that the muslim will pick up the rock too and call it holy."

    December 5, 2011 at 12:00 am |
    • moas786

      I can tell you 100% you are NO Student of Christianity or Jesus Christ, he hated Liers. may God have peace and mercy on your sole. the Totah and the Bible along with Moses and Jesus are very well RESPECTED BY MUHAMMED AND QURAN. your just afraid to acknowledge this TRUTH. so go on hate your neighbor and go on cheat a friend or you can open your heart to the true teaching of jesus blessing be upon him.

      December 5, 2011 at 12:05 am |
    • Answer

      On my sole? Laugh!!!

      The sole as the sole of my shoe? Hilarious dude! 🙂 Ya that's a good one.

      December 5, 2011 at 12:07 am |
  9. zedds

    Islam is a way of life acceptable to the almighty creator of the worlds Allah swat and not just an other religion like christianity, judaism or hinduism. We as muslims believe to receive the rewards of salvation from the almighty by adhering to our creator allah swat words as revealed to our prophet Muhammed (PBUH) by arch angel Gebrail...

    December 4, 2011 at 11:59 pm |
  10. takeiteasy

    To all islam haters, take a break. You could hurt yourselves!!! Go to sleep.

    December 4, 2011 at 11:59 pm |
    • Answer

      Who can hate someone that everyone can laugh at? lol

      It's not hate – it's ridicule.

      December 5, 2011 at 12:03 am |
    • im

      islam lover also peacfully going to sleep good night ...

      December 5, 2011 at 12:07 am |
  11. Allen

    Bla bla mo better bla bla, how 'bout they KILL people who convert on a regular basis? If you thought you'd get SHOT IN THE HEAD if you weren't registered with a political party I bet we'd have about 99.99 percent participation and the question these dweeblings would be asking is "Gee, why arent there any moderates anymore? Meh....

    December 4, 2011 at 11:59 pm |
  12. im

    I invite [those] who haven't read the Quran to simple read the book. Take out a highlighter and highlight those lines that counsel the believer to despise infidels, and you will find a book that is just covered with highlighter.– Sam Harris
    "Show us the straight path, The path of those whom Thou hast favoured; Not the (path) of those who earn Thine anger nor of those who go astray."
    Muslims generally interpret "those whom Allah has favored," "those who earn Allah's anger," and "those who go astray" as Muslims, Jews, and Christians, respectively. 1:6-7
    Don't bother warning the disbelievers. Allah has made it impossible for them to believe so that he can torture them forever after they die. 2:6-7
    Allah has sickened the hearts of disbelievers and increased their disease. He is a spiritual anti-doctor. 2:10
    Allah has blinded the disbelievers. "Allah taketh away their light and leaveth them in darkness, where they cannot see, Deaf, dumb and blind." 2:17-18
    If you try to compose a surah that is better than those in the Quran, and then fail, Allah will burn you forever if you in the fire that he has prepared for disbelievers, whose fuel is men and stones. 2:24 <
    They who disbelieve, and deny Our revelations, such are rightful Peoples of the Fire. They will abide therein." 2:39

    December 4, 2011 at 11:58 pm |
  13. Reemo

    @talezspin do not trust everything you are fed by youtube
    You really have to look into where you get your information, if you don't know what your talking about it's better if you don't talk at all. Bashing a religion and searching up a video about a non-muslim talking about Islam is obviously not the right source. I think if you really have time to look up worst and wrong information that isn't true I think you should actually go to a local mosque and ask the questions to a real muslim/sheikh to get your questions answered and your information right.

    December 4, 2011 at 11:57 pm |
    • moas786

      a wise man providing a wise suggestion.

      December 4, 2011 at 11:59 pm |
  14. Maaz

    Correct source for the history of genocide. http://www.scaruffi.com/politics/dictat.html

    December 4, 2011 at 11:56 pm |
    • moas786

      boy you did a great job following the "talking points" for the week, what else do you have in mind? the more you lie about God and His revelations to more people turn you out!

      December 5, 2011 at 12:01 am |
  15. jimbo

    They must be the least intelligent.

    December 4, 2011 at 11:55 pm |
  16. b4bigbang


    or verifiable evidence that god even exists.

    As long as u insist on lab-tested provability of God, u will fail. All truly well-educated atheists know this. There are things that dont lend themselves to the lab test, but that doesnt mean they deserve unreasoned doubt....

    December 4, 2011 at 11:55 pm |
    • ashrakay

      Yes, "There are things that dont lend themselves to the lab test"... things like leprechauns and fairies. We call those things fantasies and we use them to entertain children. But when we want an action to yield consistent results, we rely on verifiable evidence. There is nothing in your life, or daily existence that contributes to your sustainability that has not be measured, quantified and verified. In this modern age, to believe in children's stories as an adult is bordering on shameful.

      December 5, 2011 at 12:01 am |
    • Know What

      If a god wrote that book, he was very sloppy to leave such poor doc.umentation and evidence.

      You tout this "God" as omniscient, but an all-knowing being would have known that these writings could be and would be so easily mistranslated, misconstrued, misunderstood and misinterpreted and that they would not be believable to anyone who truly investigates them.

      December 5, 2011 at 12:09 am |
  17. Patriot

    The basis of Islam is 'Tawheed' i.e belief in oneness of God Almighty. He is the sole power and creator and to whom we all shall return. Muslims are at lowest point now a days because they have forgot the two major principles of Islam....Haqooq Al Ibad (Rights of Humanity in general) and Haqooq Allah (rights of The Creator).

    December 4, 2011 at 11:54 pm |
    • John

      Patriot – well – said, and agreed. Islam is a religion in which, if you hold true to it you will excel in life ... but if you hold false to it, you will be weak, undirected, counterproductive, and fail.

      The true Islam is such a gift of hope, a chance to succeed, both in this life and in the hereafter. A recipe for certain success.

      Have a nice evening 🙂

      December 5, 2011 at 12:04 am |
  18. Hitler II

    National Socialism is the perfect ideology. It satisfies the human longing for existential integration, it merely does so explicitely.

    December 4, 2011 at 11:52 pm |
    • Dean

      Remember how the first hitler ended up ?

      December 4, 2011 at 11:55 pm |
    • Maxx


      Last time I checked, Hitler was dead. I don't recall the tabloids mentioning anything about a sequel. National socialism? Um, you do realize that the 20th century is over? Get over it. The next great war of the 21st century will be an ideological one involving contesting religions. If you don't see this, you should come back from your vacation on the news and touch down on good solid earth.

      Good evening.

      December 4, 2011 at 11:57 pm |
    • Hitler II

      Centainly I remember, Dean. He ended up writing of the "coming man."

      December 4, 2011 at 11:58 pm |
    • Maxx


      However, this was only after he familiarized himself with Nietzsche's Ubermann, and provided copies of Nietzsche's works to both Stalin and Mussolini. We all know how all that worked out – how many millions slaughtered?

      Good evening.

      December 5, 2011 at 12:01 am |
    • Hitler II

      You don't know what you're talking about, Maxx. Nietzsche had as much influence on German National Socialism as Heidegger, i.e virtually none. Stalin? Just shut up.

      December 5, 2011 at 12:11 am |
    • Maxx

      Ah my friend, but you err;

      Nietzsche was Polish, not German and he maintained his nationalism to the point of insulting the Germans. Do your research. It was most probably Nietzsche's outspoken diatribes against the German people that prompted Hitler to strike Poland first. I'm sorry if you don't like history as it was vice as you'd like it to be, but hey, don't go away mad; just go away.

      Shut up? Sorry, that is one of my greatest philosophical weaknesses. I cannot stand people who try to suppress the truth. Nice try though.
      Good evening.

      December 5, 2011 at 12:18 am |
  19. lachman

    Muslims are not more religious than Christians or Hindus, they are fanatics who kill, violate in the name of religion. In Hinduism or Christianity, people don't observe honor killings, people don't indulge in suicide bombings, people don't convert their páirs in their religions before marriage, as muslims do. Muslim religion is the most radical religion on the earth, because it gives more rights to their males than their females.

    December 4, 2011 at 11:49 pm |
    • Brian

      If Americans had no tv, no sports, no electricity and the scenery they have... You'd probably be so bored you would be at the church to.

      December 4, 2011 at 11:56 pm |
    • Patriot

      Muslims in general now a days are not the true representation of Islam and its teaching. I highly encourage you to read thru 'Koran'. and you'll now why Islam is the fastest growing religion in the West and among Whites, Blacks and Latinos.

      December 4, 2011 at 11:58 pm |
    • Reemo

      I think you've got to get your information right and actually read the bible. If you haven't read women are required to wear a head covering in Christianity and it's written in the bible. That is if you are Christian. If you haven't noticed look back at history and look at how much killing was happening because of Christianity/Catholicism/etc. Just because Islam is in the media because of radicals that don't represent the Muslim population doesn't mean it's the worst. Just recently has Islam been a major "problem" I think the problem are the radicals not the religion. Their uneducated and they don't know what their doing. Don't judge a religion by what's happening in your lifetime. I can go back and get many things about different religions and talk about how bad they are by slaying this or doing that.

      December 5, 2011 at 12:03 am |
  20. NeoCeon

    I totally agree with you, syrakoose.

    People are comfortable with living in the lies of their religion. Having some nonsensical answers to questions that have no clear answers in reality(What is the meaning of life? What happens after death? What is good and what is evil?).

    Accepting that we do not KNOW all the answers, and that the answers that we do have are not compatible with their religions, is something most religious are not willing to do. They are more comfortable living in a lie.

    * NeoCeon *

    December 4, 2011 at 11:44 pm |
    • ashrakay

      Well, you know the root of all religion is fear. People are so scared, like you say, of the deep questions of life that they cling to easy answers that remind them of the parent/child comfort relationship. Saying goodbye to loved ones and believing that it is the end, is hard. Accepting this life is the only guarantee you have, is hard. Few people will face their fear and accept the true challenges of life. For the rest, there's religion.

      December 4, 2011 at 11:53 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.