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Indo-African communities are extremely common throughout the continent (particularly in former British colonies), and the Hindu community is continuing to grow. – Advertisment – This may lead you to wonder what the most popular religions in Africa are. Other strong Buddhist communities exist in countries along the Indian Ocean, and Mauritius has a high Buddhist population as well. Initially taking root in the late 19th century following British colonization, Hinduism arrived with many Indians brought to Southern and Eastern Africa as indentured servants. The extent of adherence to traditional religion in Africa is hard to estimate, due to melding practices with Christianity and Islam. Alongside Christianity, Islam is the biggest religion on the continent. In comparison, very few Muslims live in South Africa, where Christianity and other traditional religions have a larger following. Indo-African communities are extremely common thr… The indigenous religious beliefs and practices of African people include various traditional religions. More than 100 million Africans still adhere to the traditional African religions. 1 Christianity. This is the second most popular religion in the continent. This is why both are far more popular than Hinduism. Though only one country in Africa (Mauritius) has Hinduism as its dominant religion, it has a strong presence throughout the continent that can be felt especially in East Africa. by. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Your email address will not be published. In the Republic of Mauritius, an African island nation in the Indian Ocean, 54.4% of the population are Hindu. Meanwhile, sailors and merchants making port in West Africa continued to preach the faith. Islam got its start in Africa during the lifetime of the Prophet Muhammad. Almost all are oral rather than scriptural, they include belief in a supreme being, belief in spirits and other divinities, veneration of ancestors, use of magic, and traditional medicine. Take it or leave it, Africa is profoundly established in religion, so much that it affects way of life, expressions, culture and … Population: Approximately 100 million, or 10 percent of Africa’s population. Abrahamic religions are widespread throughout Africa. An example would be a person who identifies as Christian, but incorporates aspects of African traditional religions—or who identifies as some combination of the two. Most of Africa's organized religions were brought to the country from Europeans and other foreign settlers. Christianity. Christianity is the most popular religion in Africa alongside Islam. The first university was an Islamic institution at Timbuctu in the heart of the Sahara, and Egypt is … The most famous by far however is the Lalibela church complex, also in Ethiopia. Okay, so it is a little weird starting out a list with “Other,” but bear with me—I am starting out with the less popular religions and working up toward the most widespread faiths. Required fields are marked *. Most of the people practising Islam live in Northern Africa, the Swahili coast in Kenya as well as West Africa. Most of Africa's organized religions were brought to the country from Europeans and other foreign settlers. I never knew Islam is this popular in Africa ooo. Unsurprisingly, the largest pockets of Muslims live in Northern Africa, but the Horn of Africa, the Swahili Coast, and West Africa also have large populations. 334. Trending Written by Keren Mikva Dec 17, 2013. old and beautiful churches, monasteries, and other holy buildings and sites. SHARES. Christianity is the most popular religion in Africa alongside Islam. A couple examples include the Monastery of Saint Anthony, founded in 356 AD in Egypt, and the Church of Our Lady Marion of Zion in Ethiopia, founded in … No doubts why Islam is the second largest and most popular religions in the world. In fact, Kenya, South Africa, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Zambia are some of the top countries on the planet for Bahá’í. Popular. About 420 million people practice it. Your email address will not be published. In fact, the faith got its start on the continent all the way back in the 1st century AD. Strong Jain communities exist in Kenya in particular — one of the first countries to receive Jain immigrants — and temples in Nairobi and Mombasa organize cultural and religious activities year round. UK-based internet entrepreneur with love for the great continent of Africa. Initially taking root in the late 19th century following British colonization, Hinduism arrived with many Indians brought to Southern and Eastern Africa as indentured servants. The World Book Encyclopediahas estimated that in 2002 Christians formed 40% of the continent's population, with Muslims forming 45%. We also share information about your use of our site with our advertising and analytics partners who may combine it with other information they have obtained. Christianity is the most popular religion in Africa alongside Islam. Furthermore, there is a large population of Sufism that differentiated with other Muslims because of their philosophy. Alongside Armenia, it is believed that Ethiopia may have been the first country on the planet to accept the religion. African people often combine the practice of their traditional belief with the practice of Abrahamic religions. I'm not saying i know everything about Africa but I'm here to offer the world some of the most accurate and interesting facts about the continent. Most Popular Religions In Africa. Large minorities of Chinese immigrants live in South Africa and Mauritius, making up the majority of these communities, but, representing the diversity of the continent, they can really be found in every region. Why hasn’t Hinduism spread more throughout the continent? While there had been a strong Jain community in Uganda, many were forced out as a result of Idi Amin’s policies, resulting in larger Jain populations in South Africa, Tanzania, and Sudan (although Sudan too has experienced an exodus of its Jain population, along with thousands more, as a result of conflict). Vodun gave rise to a number of different diaspora faiths, throughout the world collectively known as “Voodoo” or “Vudú.”. The main reason is essentially that Hinduism—at least in its main form—is a non-proselytizing religion. Christianity. Buddhism is not a very common religion in Africa either—there are only a few hundred thousand practitioners, largely immigrants from China. For instance, the Beta Israel in Ethiopia and the Lemba in Zimbabwe and South Africa are both recognized as historically Jewish, though their practices may vary. Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews have a strong presence in Northern Africa, where thousands have been since the first Jewish diaspora, and many more followed after their expulsion from Iberia in the 15th century. The most infrequent participation in services were noted for individuals that said they followed ancestral, tribal, animist or other traditional African religions. Though it was introduced to the continent later as a result of immigration from India in the 19th century, Jainism has grown in Africa. While the largest Buddhist population on the continent lives in South Africa (somewhat surprising, given its geographical distance from Asia), it only makes up between 0.2 percent to 0.3 percent of the population — though it has been shown that this number is growing by the year. There are quite a few famous churches and monasteries located throughout the continent. Finally, small pockets of groups are scattered throughout the continent that have developed their own traditions, but are rooted in Jewish tradition and trace back to ancient Israel. To see this page as it is meant to appear, please enable your Javascript! They have both spread and replaced indigenous African religions, but are often adapted to African cultural contexts and belief systems. October 30, 2018, 9:07 am. Share Tweet Get Stories like this. 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