Expert: The are No Reasons For Any Religious Conflicts In Belarus
According to the data provided by Gallup Center, only 27% Belarusians admitted that religion plays an important role in their lives, despite the fact that 59% regard themselves as “believers”. According to professor Anatol Taras, the science secretary of Institute of Belarusian History and Cultures, due to that number Belarus is among the 11 least religious countries of the world.
The believing part of population consists of Orthodox (Belarusian Exarchate of ROC) – approximately 78.5%, Catholics – 14.5%, Protestants (Pentecostals, Baptists, Lutherans, Jehovah’s Witnesses etc.) – 5.8%, Uniats and old believers appr. 0.5%, the adherents of Oriental religions (Muslims, Krishna worshippers, Bahai) – 0.4. According to bsblog.info, there are only 13 thousand of Hebrews, many them are non-believers.
But only 18% of Orthodox, 50% of Catholics and 80% of Protestants go to church regularly.
Anatol Taras mentions that 99% of population are Christians, but they are divided into 3 main confessions: Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant, and many “believers” show a weak interest in church activities.
Moreover, great part of Belarusian Christians, mainly in the countryside, keeps adhering to the so-called “folk Christianity”, which despite its Christian Orthodox appearance retains its pagan essence, says the professor.
There is no more than 22 thousand Muslims in Belarus.
“Therefore, we can conclude that there are no internal causes for religious conflicts in our country. Bealrusians are traditionally not very religious and not prone to religious fanaticism. I dare say that even external efforts of provoking such kind of conflict will fail”, – stated the scientist.
“The government must pay attention to the number of Muslims and prevent growing of their numbers in the country. One can not commit the mistake that several European countries did, had being created the crisis of Muslim extremism with their own hands”, pointed he.
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