Pew’s Muslim Survey (is great)

This survey was really well done. To me, it’s a really responsible form of journalism because it tackles an important but little-understood area, and it uses a fairly sophisticated set of data to do it.

I found it pretty incredible that only 6% of the surveyed Muslims went to Mecca. For me, that tenet of Islam is so interesting and unique that I somehow just assumed that it was a common thing. Not so. Very few people go to Mecca and pilgrimages are rarer the further one gets from Saudi Arabia. I assume part of this had to do with the fact that many Muslims are clustered in some very poor parts of the world. Trips are hard to arrange.

Second, a lot of the statistics in here point out that fundamentalism is really an AFRICAN phenomenon. I would like to see how the % of Muslims in Africa has changed in the last hundred years. Africa has always had significant Muslim ties, but my uneducated guess is that Muslims have skyrocketed as part of the population as Islam has become a kind of global protest religion and Africa has a lot to protest about.

I also think adding Iran and Saudi Arabia to this would be useful.


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