Where is Islam practiced?

Where is Islam practiced?

The Muslim World can be used to mean three different aspects related to those who practice Islam: religious, cultural, and geographical. This term is sometimes also stated as the Islamic World. On the religious level, the Muslim World refers to Muslims, or individuals who practice Islam. Culturally, the term refers to Islamic civilization. In the geographic sense, which is perhaps the most commonly used, it refers to the countries and other political regions where Muslims make up the majority of the population.

Today, Islam is one of the most widely practiced religions across the world. Its practitioners make up the second largest religious group globally. With a population of over 1.6 billion people, Muslims represent over 23% of the world population. The two major sects of Islam are Shia and Sunni. Sunni Islam is the majority denomination and is practiced by approximately 1.5 billion individuals. Shia is a smaller denomination with only around 170 million followers. It is the dominant religion throughout the Middle East, North Africa, the Horn of Africa, the Sahel region of Africa, and Central Asia. Additionally, China, Russia, India, and the Balkans all have large Muslim populations.

 The Pew Research Center reported that In 2015, the ten countries with the largest population of Muslims were:

    • Indonesia: 220 million
    • India: 195 million
    • Pakistan: 184 million
    • Bangladesh: 144 million
    • Nigeria: 90 million
    • Egypt: 84 million
    • Iran: 78 million
    • Turkey: 75 million
    • Algeria: 37 million
    • Iraq: 36 million 6

There were about 1.75 billion Muslims worldwide in 2015, according to the Pew Research Center1,6 About 23% of all people were Muslims. This makes Islam the second most popular religion in the world at that time, surpassed in numbers only by Christianity. Islam is currently in a period of rapid growth, and the number of its followers is expected to reach almost 3 billion by the year 2060. At that time, the total number of Muslims will probably approximately equal the total number of Christians in the world.

Between 2015 and 2060, the growth of:

·  The total population of the world is expected to increase by 32%;

Over the same interval, the various religions are expected to grow as follows:

    • Muslims by 70%;
    • Christians by 34%; 
    • Hindus by 27%,
    • Jews by 15%;
    • Folk religions by 5%;
    • The Nones (a.k.a. Notas or Not Affiliated persons) by 5%
    • Other religions by 0%, and
    • Buddhists by -7%. 1

Thus, in terms of "market share:"

·  Islam will be the only world religion to experience significant growth;

· Christianity will retain its current "market share," and perhaps increase it slightly;

·   Other world religions will lose market share. 

Estimates of the number of Muslim adults in the U.S. have ranged from about 1 to 7 million. The former estimate is based on public opinion polls and assume that almost all adults who consider themselves to be Muslim are willing to respond openly to public opinion pollsters. Because of the widespread islamophobia in the country, this value is certainly an underestimate. The latter estimate comes from Muslim groups in the U.S. who assume that all immigrants to the U.S. from Muslim countries were Muslims and that they have remained so to the present time. It is certainly an overestimate. 2Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life report in 2015 estimated that the number of Muslim adults in the U.S. is 2.6 million, which is 0.6% of the total population. This places Islam as the third most popular organized religion in the U.S. after Christianity (71%) and Judaism (0.9%). 3




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