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Former featured article candidate Religion is a former featured article candidate. Please view the links under Article milestones below to see why the nomination failed. For older candidates, please check the archive.
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April 15, 2006 Featured article candidate Not promoted
November 19, 2009 Peer review Reviewed
Current status: Former featured article candidate
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Update to Religious groups table?[edit]

I suggest the table under 'Religious groups' showing numbers of adherents for the five main religions, ought to be updated and expanded with more recent data, e.g. 2010 from the Pew Research Center. Also, I think it would be a good idea to include a few other groups so that the total adds up to 100% and, quite importantly, the "non-religious" category gets a mention too. With regard to Judaism, which is clearly is a minor religion in percentage terms, I think it's worth separating out because of its (dis-proportionate) world-wide impact. The revised table would look like this:

Major religious groups Adherents in 2010[1]  % of world population[1] Demographics
Christianity 2200 million 31.5% Christianity by country
Islam 1600 million 23.2% Islam by country
Hinduism 1000 million 15.0% Hinduism by country
Buddhism 500 million 7.1% Buddhism by country
Folk religion 400 million 5.9% Chinese folk religion
Judaism 14 million 0.2% Judaism by country
Other religions 58 million 0.8%
Non-Religious 1100 million 16.3%
Total 6872 million 100.0%

† Includes followers of African traditional religions, Chinese folk religions, Native American religions and Australian aboriginal religions.
‡ Includes Bahai's, Jains, Sikhs, Shintoists, Taoists, followers of Tenrikyo, Wiccans, Zoroastrians and many other faiths.
¶ Includes atheists, agnostics and people who do not identify with any particular religion in surveys.

  1. ^ a b Pew Research Center (December 2012). "The Global Religious Landscape. A Report on the Size and Distribution of the World’s Major Religious Groups as of 2010.". Pew Research Center. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just added archive links to 3 external links on Religion. Please take a moment to review my edit. If necessary, add {{cbignore}} after the link to keep me from modifying it. Alternatively, you can add {{nobots|deny=InternetArchiveBot}} to keep me off the page altogether. I made the following changes:

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N Archived sources still need to be checked

Cheers. —cyberbot IITalk to my owner:Online 11:40, 27 August 2015 (UTC)

Fixed Stickee (talk) 04:58, 25 September 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 25 September 2015[edit]

Atheistic Churches There is presently a movement of “atheistic churches” where professed atheists and agnostics gather as communities. Their goals are to form community and discuss scientific and moral issues in the world. This particular group encourages its followers to pursue their individual beliefs without any interference. Atheistic churches often hold “Sunday Assemblies” in which congregations of secular humanists, atheists, and agnostics come together to celebrate life without an influence of the government or of a church. Religion301 (talk) 17:50, 25 September 2015 (UTC)

Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: as you have not requested a specific change in the form "Please replace XXX with YYY" or "Please add ZZZ between PPP and QQQ".
More importantly, you have not cited reliable sources to back up your request, without which no information should be added to, or changed in, any article. - Arjayay (talk) 17:58, 25 September 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 25 September 2015[edit]

Please change "The word religion is sometimes used interchangeably with faith or set of duties" to "The word religion is sometimes used interchangeably with faith and is also often associated with set of duties"; however, in the words of Émile Durkheim, religion differs from private belief in that it is "something eminently social." The existing phraseology is misleading because it only addresses the distinction between "faith" as used interchangeably with religion by quoting Durkheim. Indeed, the existing sentence does not identify the issue of religion as used interchangeably with "set of duties," which is a distinctly separate entity from the concept of faith. Therefore, the word "association" to describe "set of duties" more accurately addresses and more clearly explains the distinction between faith and "set of duties" and their rhetorical respective relationships to the popular understanding, or discourse of, religion.

Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: please establish a consensus for this alteration before using the {{edit semi-protected}} template. -- Sam Sailor Talk! 18:43, 3 October 2015 (UTC)


The most comprehensive definition for religion is:

Religion is that which is concerned with what happens after you die. This can include a system of beliefs, rituals, worship and lifestyle choices that are related to improving the prospects of what happens after your death. Or it can simply relate to a belief in what happens after death without any concept of ritual or lifestyle choice etc.

If you wish to exclude atheism from this definition, then you could include a clause whereby religion is the belief that something happens after your death. Different religions believe different things happen and many believe that lifestyle choices will influence what happens. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:32, 3 October 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 8 October 2015[edit]

Please change "A religion is an organized collection of beliefs, cultural systems, and world views that relate humanity to an order of existence." to "A religion is a collection of beliefs, cultural systems, and practices that, together, comprise world views that relate humanity to the cosmos and an order of existence." Deleted “organized,” as organization is not a key element of the definition of religion and therefore is misleading to include in the first sentence. Added the word “practices” to emphasize that religion also includes a performative, active/ participation component. Additionally, cosmos makes the following term “order of existence” more precise and specific to religion as apposed to other Religion301 (talk) 04:33, 8 October 2015 (UTC)

Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: please establish a consensus for any non-factual, PoV alteration, such as this, before using the {{edit semi-protected}} template. thanks - Arjayay (talk) 20:49, 9 October 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 12 October 2015[edit]

Under 'Social Constructionism' it would be informative to the modern concept paragraph to add scholar Brent Nongbri's analysis of the names of religious groups. The names of supposedly venerable old religions can often be traced back to a relatively recent past. For example, Hinduism first appears in 1787 and Buddhism comes up in 1801. There are ancient forms of these words but they described verbal activities rather than conceptual entities. In ancient Greek, ioudaismos was not "the religion of Judaism but rather the activity of Judaizing or following the practice associated with the Judean ethnicity. the Arabic islām was not the religion of Islam but "submitting to authority."

<ref>Nongbri, Brent. Before Religion: A History of a Modern Concept. New Haven: Yale UP, 2013. Print.</ref>

USC Religion (talk) 17:23, 12 October 2015 (UTC)

X mark.svg Not done PoV request by now-blocked user - Arjayay (talk) 11:23, 23 November 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 14 October 2015[edit]

PLEASE CHANGE (the text near the end of the Etymology section):

One of its central concepts is "halakha", sometimes translated as "law""


One of its central concepts is "halakha", meaning the "walk" or "path" sometimes translated as "law""

in order to include the significant and accurate translation information which is truly etymological, because although the current translation is technically correct it also fails to convey the essential source of the concept.

JUSTIFICATION: The Hebrew verb to walk: ללכת (LaLechet) has the three letter root הלך (hey-lamed-chet which is the imperfect past tense form meaning "he walked") which is grammatically the source of the abstract singular noun "Halakha" spelled: הלכה which is the exact word in question. This can be verified with any Hebrew-English lexicon and knowledge of the morphology of the Hebrew language. The substitution of "way", "walk" or "path" indicates the etymological sense of the word in the tradition.

DavidSternman (talk) 19:42, 14 October 2015 (UTC)

Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: Thanks for wanting to improve this article, but we can't make changes based on personal knowledge, we need a reliable source. Regards, Older and ... well older (talk) 15:45, 26 November 2015 (UTC)
Yes check.svg Done -- Linda M. Whiteford; Robert T. Trotter II (2008). Ethics for Anthropological Research and Practice. Waveland Press. p. 22. ISBN 978-1-4786-1059-5.  -- Moxy (talk)

Semi-protected edit request on 14 October 2015[edit]

I want to add the following text to the page. I believe it would fit best in the origins and development section, after the section beginning with "According to anthropologists John Monaghan and Peter Just" and ending with "a group of supporters who are able to institutionalize the movement."

The text I would like to add is copied below. The second paragraph, in quotations, is a direct quote from Tylor's text, Primitive Culture. It should be indented and in italics between the two other small paragraphs, which are my original words.

Ethnologist E.B. Tylor proposed that primitive peoples acquired their first religious ideas by the same reasoning process modern humans use in all aspects of their lives: they observed their world and tried to explain it. According to Tylor, two observations occupied the fascination of early humans: death and dreams.

It seems as though thinking men...were deeply impressed by two groups of biological problems. In the first place, what is it that makes a difference between a living body and a dead one; what causes waking, sleep, trance, disease, death? In the second place, what are those human shapes which appear in dreams and visions? - from Tylor’s Primitive Culture (1871)

From these questions, early peoples reasoned that two things composed every man: a body and a phantom, or soul. Thus, Tylor suggests that the origin, or the essence of religion, is animism, “the belief in spiritual beings.”

USC Religion (talk) 21:07, 14 October 2015 (UTC)

X mark.svg Not done Pov request by now-blocked user - Arjayay (talk) 11:22, 23 November 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 14 October 2015[edit]

I think the following small edit clarifies the first line of the origins and development section.

The origin of all religion is uncertain and rarely agreed upon. However, there are a number of theories regarding the subsequent origins of specific religious practices.

USC Religion (talk) 21:46, 14 October 2015 (UTC)

Pictogram voting wait.svg Already done. —Skyllfully (talk | contribs) 19:24, 27 October 2015 (UTC)
If this has already been done then I'm setting this to answered. The current wording is slightly different, but if that's important it can be discussed here before a formal request is made. The current wording seems simpler and clearer anyway. Grayfell (talk) 22:35, 4 November 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 20 October 2015[edit]

Please add this text: Scripture is an especially common way to define certain religions, and it has been used from the past to the present-day forms of religions. As Wilfred Cantwell Smith in his work, What is Scripture?, points out, “scripture is a reality and a concept inherited from the past, and involved in the general novelty and in the pluralism of our modern world.” Please add it after the second paragraph of the page that reads: "Many religions may have organized behaviors, clergy, a definition of what constitutes adherence or membership, holy places, and scriptures." USC Religion (talk) 05:56, 20 October 2015 (UTC)

Red question icon with gradient background.svg Not done: it's not clear what changes you want to be made. Please mention the specific changes in a "change X to Y" format. Also, please provide reliable sources. —Skyllfully (talk | contribs) 19:24, 27 October 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 20 October 2015[edit]

Please add this text as a separate idea underneath the "Social Constructionism" section: Another way in which religion can be a social construct is through experiencing spiritual practices with others. French social scientist and sociology pioneer, Emile Durkheim, states that “religion is something eminently social,” meaning that one discovers and learns about religion through a communal and social (rather than individual) experience.

USC Religion (talk) 05:57, 20 October 2015 (UTC)

X mark.svg Not done PoV request by now-blocked user - Arjayay (talk) 11:21, 23 November 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 21 October 2015[edit]

I believe there needs to be more information under "Animal Sacrifice". It should include all kinds of sacrifice and not just animals. It should also demonstrate how religious people viewed this. It should look something like this:

Sacrifice was popular throughout many religions including amongst the greeks. It was not always solely animals but sometimes people as well. In the case of the greeks they saw sacrifice as a way of "doing business with the gods" (Jane Ellen Harrison) rather than viewing it as a terrible thing or even seeing it as barbaric. They had a calm cool sense towards it. If they gave the gods this goat, the gods would in turn aid them in battle. Agillos94 (talk) 20:35, 21 October 2015 (UTC)

Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: please provide reliable sources that support the change you want to be made. —Skyllfully (talk | contribs) 19:24, 27 October 2015 (UTC)

Religious groups: re-organize?[edit]

I suggest to change "Religious groups" to "Major religions". Instead of "Abrahamic religions" I would use the subheadings "Christianity", "Islam" etc. That is much more user-friendly and in line with current classification. The "minor" religions should be left under the sub-headings of the major religions. Peteruetz (talk) 18:55, 7 November 2015 (UTC)

"Religious" religion[edit]

The topic of Religion as in this article has become excessively narrow, likely by accident or laziness. The narrowness really lowers the quality of the article. As mentioned sporadically, the word also means "conscientious", "go over again", "consider carefully", i.e. nothing to do with life after death, or the meaning of life, or even Jesus. The Federal 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals in New York decided that Alcoholics Anonymous is a religion, even though its main focus is staying sober. "Xerox religiously spends most of its profits on research." "Global warming has become a religion". In this article, the emphasis on faith groups has lowered the quality of the discussion of religion. It really needs to spend some time sorting the confusion so that readers understand why Islam and civil engineering are religions, for example, while Rastafarianism and Global Warming aren't. Is anybody interested in helping out? Santamoly (talk) 07:24, 21 November 2015 (UTC)

You will enjoy my papers[edit]

Sujay Rao Mandavilli (talk) 02:12, 26 November 2015 (UTC)