The poll highlights the disparity between society’s values and religion.
Recently, YouGov conducted a study in various regions throughout North Africa, the Middle East, and the West to find out the attitude of the people in these areas towards religion. The company covered countries such as United Arab Emirates (UAE), United States, Britain, Egypt, France, Algeria, Germany, and Saudi Arabia.
Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayyib, the Grand Imam of Al Azhar and Pope Francis met on Tuesday in Abu Dhabi. UAE’s ambassador in the U.S., Yousef Al Otaiba, said: “The pope’s visit will send a strong signal across the region and world: people with different beliefs can live, work and worship together.” He wants the world to understand that beliefs don’t have to come in the way when it comes to worshiping, working, and living together.
The study by YouGov brings attention to the contradiction between the values of Islam and society, in several Western countries.
A good number of the participants from Britain (38 percent), France (46 percent), United States (36 percent) and Germany (47 percent), believe there is a clash between Islam and the values of their country. In France, Germany, and the United States less than half surveyed think Islam is compatible with the values of their country.
At the same time, people in the Middle East and North African countries have a different perception of Christianity. According to residents in Algeria (22 percent) and Saudi Arabia (25 percent), they believe the values of Christian teachings and their society are incompatible. However, these figures went down considerably in countries such as Egypt (7 percent) and the United Arab Emirates (13 percent).
Several respondents from Western countries stated they were concerned about the growth of extremism in Islam.
To bring a deeper understanding of how other religions fare against society, YouGov conducted other surveys. They found in the United States, 14 percent of the participants believe the values of Hinduism clash with society’s values. Similarly, the figures for Sikhism and Buddhism are 15 percent and 14 percent respectively.
Other countries such as France, Germany, and Britain showed similar responses to religions other than Islam. About 15 percent of the French find Christianity unfavorable, 14 percent are against Sikhism, 13 percent don’t support Hinduism, 9 percent are disapproving of Buddhism, and 19 percent oppose Judaism. In Germany, people who find religions other than Islam unfavorable hovers between 10 percent – 22 percent.
Similarly, only a small percentage of the participants had concerns about extremism in these religions.