Religion Profiles

Buddhism is a nontheistic religion based on the traditions of Siddharta Gautama ("Buddha"), who lived in the 4th century in what is today Nepal and India. There are a variety of Buddhist strains with followers concentrated in East Asia, Southeast Asia, and India, but Buddhist communities exist in nearly every country of the world.

 

Christianity is a monotheistic Abrahamic faith based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth. Christianity is practiced by roughly a third of the global population, with the greatest growth in recent decades in Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia-Pacific.

 

Hinduism encompasses a broad range of religious ideas, practices, and communities native to South Asia that spread throughout Southeast Asia in the first millennium and around the globe in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

 

Humanism is a non-theistic stance that advocates for philosophical, moral, and ethical engagement with society. Humanism emphasizes rational thought, social progress, and empirical science over faith and religious belief, though humanists themselves span a broad range of perspectives, and include agnostics as well as atheists.

 

Islam is a monotheistic and Abrahamic faith sharing much in common with Judaism and Christianity. Nearly one in four people in the world today is Muslim, with a stunning range of diverse traditions, beliefs, and practices.

 

Judaism is the oldest of the three monotheistic Abrahamic faiths, dating back roughly 3,000 years. Judaism lacks a central authority, and is expressed through a variety of movements and traditions practiced today around the world.