• 13 June 2024

7 Interesting facts about India and Sanatan Dharm

Sep 2, 2023

Sanatan Dharm, often called Hinduism, is one of the world’s oldest religions. It comes from India and has been around for thousands of years. This ancient belief system has changed and grown over time, including a lot of different ideas, practices, and thoughts. Sanatan Dharma isn’t just a religion; it’s a way of life that has had a big impact on how people in India and other places live, their values, and their spirituality. In this introduction, we’ll look at the basic ideas, ceremonies, and deep thoughts that make up Sanatan Dharma, and why it still matters today.

1: India – The Heartland of Hinduism

  • Over 90% of the world’s Hindus reside in India, totaling more than 1.1 billion adherents.
  • India’s 2011 census reveals that 79.8% of its population identifies as Hindu, with minority populations of Islam, Christianity, and Sikhism.

2: Hindu Populations Beyond India

CountryPercentage of Population
NepalHindu Majority
BangladeshSignificant Hindu Population
United KingdomAlmost 2% (England & Wales)
United StatesLess than 1%

3: Diwali and Multi-Faith Celebrations

  • In India, 95% of Hindus celebrate Diwali, with 17% participating in Christmas festivities and 7% celebrating Muslim Eid.
  • Diwali is embraced by Jains (98%), Sikhs (90%), Buddhists (79%), Christians (31%), and Muslims (20%) in India.
Celebration of diwali in India among religions
Image Credits – Pew Research Centre

4: Belief in God

  • A staggering 98% of Indian Hindus believe in God, with 61% asserting the existence of “one God with many manifestations.”
  • Only 7% of Hindus in India believe in multiple gods, and 29% affirm the belief in “only one God.”

“There is only one God.” – 29% of Indian Hindus

5: Personal Gods and Deities

DeityPercentage Feeling Closest
Shiva44%
Ganesha32%
Lakshmi28%
Lord Ram17%
Lord Shiva: Sanatan Dharm
Image Credits – Pew Research Centre
  • Shiva remains the most cherished deity among Hindus, particularly during Diwali.

6: Daily Worship (Puja)

  • 55% of Indian Hindus perform daily puja (worship) at home, with 20% doing so at temples.
  • Hindu women are more likely (64%) to perform daily home puja compared to men (47%).

7: Education and National Identity

  • Hindus in the U.S. and Europe are among the most educated religious groups in their respective regions.
  • In India, Hindus are among the least educated groups.

“To be truly Indian, it’s very important to be Hindu.” – 64% of Indian Hindus

These beliefs about Indian national identity significantly influence political views and support for India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). While 49% of Hindu voters supported the BJP in the 2019 election, this support increased to 60% among those who consider being Hindu and speaking Hindi as crucial aspects of Indian identity.

In conclusion, Hindus worldwide exhibit remarkable diversity in their beliefs, practices, and contributions to their respective societies, making their presence felt on a global scale.

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