A quick Google led me to Wikipedia who says the current count is 4,200 religions operating in the world today. That's a lot of different stories. That's a lot of different ways to live your life.
With only a HS education, I must admit I have a great deal of respect for believers. What impresses me is the tremendous amount of reading a believer has to do.
I mean, 4,200 different stories and texts, not to mention all the different languages. Sheesh! I don't think I could be a believer just because of all the reading I'd have to do. Where do they find the time, especially the young believers, it boggles my little mind.
They had to read every story, and understand the texts from many different countries and cultures, so they could find that one religion, that religion that spoke to them, the one they knew without a doubt was the truth, the one that they would allow to take over their minds and lives; after all the searching and reading and the soul-wrenching struggle, they found the one they could turn to the rest of their world with and say "This is my belief! This is my religion!" That's pretty impressive!
But it makes sense I guess. The choice they make is going to determine how they live; sometimes even where they live, who they live with, who they love, who they hate, how they dress, what they eat...whew! It's all such a huge personal undertaking, it makes sense they would want to spend so much time and effort to read and research each and every religion to make 'damn' sure they were choosing the right one.
I mean, who in their right mind would just guess?
Yep, my hat's off to believers. I don't think I could do it.
That IS the way believers make their choice...isn't it?
I mean, 4,200 different stories and texts, not to mention all the different languages. Sheesh! I don't think I could be a believer just because of all the reading I'd have to do.
They usually just get the condensed version from a friend, and then just like Terms of Agreement, they scroll to the bottom and click 'I Agree'.
Not every religion has a sacred text. In the ancient Mediterranean, in fact the Jews were the only group with such. (There wasn't, for instance a Sacred Text of Zeus.)
But far more importantly, its 4,200 ways to go wrong and no doubt a near infinity of other ways no one bothered to invent.
Generally you don't get to choose until you grow up. My ex-wife tried out religions like shoes.
Investigating a religion a day would still take an undecided individual over a decade to make an informed decision. Even if they got it wrong the 'correct gawd' would still have to be impressed with the effort.
Just in case make sure to make the right choice.....here.
In truth it is even deeper than you might imagine. In the Christian religion alone there are currently 42,000 different Christian belief systems, or elements that have decided to follow their own particular view of the ever confusing Christian religion. This was reported in one of the international Christian record keeping magazines or reporting agencies. This is up from 38,000 only two years ago. It seems that Christians can't even agree among themselves.
I have additional survey evidence that only 12% of Christians have actually read their Bible. Perhaps this is what produces the internal confusion. Like you, I could not keep up with it and I have studied the worlds religions since the early seventies.
I can see why religions fight. They all want to be right, but none can.
In the Christian religion alone there are currently 42,000 different Christian belief systems, or elements that have decided to follow their own particular view of the ever confusing Christian religion.
And then add on top of that the individual Christians who have their own idea of what a "true Christian" is, and that 42,000 skyrockets even higher.
And each of them believe they are the right one