Russians and Eastern Europeans attach great importance to religion and gives it a significant political role in society. According to studies, in recent years, the number of Orthodox Christians in the region has grown, and Catholics - has decreased.
According to the German newspaper Die Welt, almost all Orthodox people want to see a strong Russia as a counterweight to Western influence. This survey revealed the Pew American Institute, conducted in 18 countries where 25 thousand. People were interviewed. According to the study, first of all Belarusians, Serbs, Armenians, Bulgarians and Greeks expect from Russia's ability to resist the West.
The newspaper reminds that the Russian Orthodox Church in the year 1991 37% of the population profess to 2015, this figure amounted to 71%. Only 15% of the respondents identified themselves as non-religious or atheists. 10% classified themselves among the Muslims. In other Orthodox countries the number was even higher: in Ukraine - 78%, in Romania - 86%.
At the same time, the number of Catholics in Eastern Europe has declined significantly in recent years - they have decreased in Poland, Lithuania, Hungary and especially in the Czech Republic (decrease from 44% to 21%). The Czech Republic and once Lutheran Estonia, where the number of Catholics decreased from 72% to 45%, became the two countries with the most significant share of the non-religious population. According to Die Welt, it is the Orthodoxy that especially influences worldview and political moods - often stronger than Catholicism. "Our people are not perfect, but our culture is superior to others" - 89% of Greeks, 69% of Russians agreed with this statement, but only 55% of Poles and Czechs.
In fact, it is more typical for Orthodoxy national pride, the traditional image of the family, and the condemnation of sexual minorities. Which is characteristic, similar positions in the Orthodox countries adhere to even the non-religious population, writes the German newspaper.
Although respondents younger than 35 years are more liberal: 9% of young Russians are in favor of legalizing same-sex marriages. Among the rest of the population they are supported only by 3%. The Orthodox also demonstrate a higher high tolerance towards Muslims, the publication asserts. 28% of respondents said they would accept an adherent of Islam as a member of the family, 68% have nothing against fellow citizens of the Muslim religion. Among Catholics, these figures are only 15% and 43%, respectively.
It is noted that a clear relationship could be established between religious affiliation and attitudes towards democracy in the study. 41% of Russians believe that this is not the best form of government. Moldovans and Serbs of the same opinion. Meanwhile 77% of Orthodox Greeks were in favor of democracy.
That is, with the approval of Russia in the role of protector of Orthodox Christians abroad have concerned many countries in Eastern Europe. While clearly pro-Western stance taken mostly believers in Ukraine, Romania and Georgia.
Recall sociological agency Pew Research recently provided statistics about the US religious groups. Over the two terms of Baraka Obamy, the number of those Americans that identify themselves as atheists rose 9%. Before the inauguration of the outgoing US president to strongly consider myself an unbeliever 16% of the US population today already 25%.
At the same time have their US allies want the residents of more than forty countries in the world. Russia as a potential ally attracts slightly less than the States, but it ranks second on the results of a global survey conducted at the end of the year 2016 association of independent research agency Gallup International.
The study indicated 22 States in which the share of Russian supporters ranging from 14% (Albania) to 71% (Mongolia). Five of the main supporters of Russia is as follows: Mongolia, Armenia, Serbia, Greece, China. In general, 15% of respondents worldwide have chosen ally Russia. There are among the supporters of the Russian and Ukrainian citizens. So the struggle for influence over the minds of the inhabitants of the earth continues.