And while both Muslims and Christians recognize positive attributes in one another, tensions lie close to the surface.
It is our hope that the survey will contribute to a better understanding of the role religion plays in the private and public lives of the approximately 820 million people living in sub-Saharan Africa.
Muslims are significantly more positive in their assessment of Christians than Christians are in their assessment of Muslims.
There are few significant gaps, however, in the degree of support among Christians and Muslims for democracy.
In little more than a century, the religious landscape of sub-Saharan Africa has changed dramatically.
Christianity Vs Islam Essay
As of 1900, both Muslims and Christians were relatively small minorities in the region.
While sub-Saharan Africa has almost twice as many Christians as Muslims, on the African continent as a whole the two faiths are roughly balanced, with 400 million to 500 million followers each.
Since northern Africa is heavily Muslim and southern Africa is heavily Christian, the great meeting place is in the middle, a 4,000-mile swath from Somalia in the east to Senegal in the west.
To some outside observers, this is a volatile religious fault line—the site, for example, of al-Qaeda’s first major terrorist strike, the bombing of the U. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998, and more recently of ethnic and sectarian bloodshed in Nigeria, where hundreds of Muslims and Christians have been killed.
To others, religion is not so much a source of conflict as a source of hope in sub- Saharan Africa, where religious leaders and movements are a major force in civil society and a key provider of relief and development for the needy, particularly given the widespread reality of failed states and collapsing government services.