Pew survey, published on June 29, reiterates what we know for ages: Indians, irrespective of their religion, share common ancient culture. And Indians are by default tolerant.
Pew research, published on June 29, has some findings which may perplex outsiders but, Indians know it for ages. Respect for all religions is very basic to the Indian way of life.
The Pew Research notes, “Indians see religious tolerance as a central part of who they are as a nation. Across the major religious groups, most people say it is very important to respect all religions to be “truly Indian.”
It further notes “tolerance is a religious as well as a civic value: Indians are united in the view that respecting other religions is a very important part of what it means to be a member of their religious community.”
Hindus and Muslims, who together make 94 percent of the Indian population, believe in Karma. The Research notes, “Not only do a majority of Hindus in India (77%) believe in karma, but an identical percentage of Muslims do, too.”
River Ganga is central to the religious and cultural life of Indians. The Research finds “A third of Christians in India (32%)–together with 81% of Hindus–say they believe in the purifying power of the Ganges River, a central belief in Hinduism.”
And irrespective of their religion, the majority of Indians believe respecting elders is central to their beliefs.
The vested interests have tried to create a narrative that Muslims face discrimination in the country but, the Pew Research notes “Relatively few Muslims say their community faces “a lot” of discrimination in India (24%).”
Reinforcing the shared cultural values across religious lines, the Research notes, “for many Indians, calling oneself a Muslim or a Christian does not preclude believing in karma or reincarnation–beliefs that do not have a traditional, doctrinal basis in Islam or Christianity.”
The Pew Research Center survey was conducted in 17 languages between late 2019 and early 2020. Nearly 30000 face-to-face interviews were conducted in the given period.