What is God according to each religion


God Almighty. Or not? Each
Religion has its own image of God. The
Concepts of the Lord are very different.

by Laura Marsch

Over 80 percent of the people in the world are religious. They believe in very different religions and different gods.
Five people from the five world religions told what religion means to them.


A religion differs in its scriptures, in its traditions and from its images of God. Islam, Christianity and Judaism speak of only one God. They are considered monotheistic religions. Hinduism, on the other hand, has many gods. Other religions are still arguing about whether their model is a figure of God at all.




You shouldn't make an image of him
Christians believe in one God revealed in Jesus Christ. God is referred to as "the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit". In some passages in the Bible he is described with human features. But the believers are urged not to get a precise picture of him. His attributes include being compassionate, gracious, righteous, and almighty. Most of the people in the world are Christians. The estimated number is over 2.3 billion. They are the majority, especially in Europe, Central and South America, Africa and the Pacific. Only in Asia do they belong to the minority.





The chosen people of Israel

God chose Israel to be his people over 2,000 years ago. Even today, a Jew is therefore automatically an Israeli and can hold an Israeli passport. According to the Torah, a person can only be a Jew who also belongs to the Jewish people. Membership in Judaism is transferred through the mother. According to the strict interpretation, only those who have a Jewish mother can be a Jew. In Judaism, God has no physical attributes. He requires members of his faith to adhere strictly to the Torah and the Ten Commandments. He is described as a strict judge who is omniscient and is considered to be omnipresent. The Jews live mainly in Israel and the USA. Large communities also exist in France, Canada, Great Britain, and Russia. In total there are just over 14 million Jews worldwide.





He is Allah, the only one
In Islam, God is called “Allah”. The Muslims are only allowed to believe in him. All other people are called unbelievers. The relationship between man and Allah is very hierarchical. People should submit to their Lord, follow his words and laws. He is portrayed as a very strong personality who found his prophet in Mohammed. He is not described as a human being, for example he can speak a universal language without tongues and without lips. However, he can hear and is omnipresent. Muslims live particularly in North Africa and the Arab world. 1.8 billion people should believe in Allah.





There is no such thing as one
Depending on the religious community, Hindus worship different gods. There are said to be over 3,000 gods. Nobody knows the exact number. Most Hindus believe in one of these three main gods: Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. Their stories are in legends. This describes their various tasks for which they are responsible. Shiva cares about the redemption of man. Vishnu is the hero and adventurer. Brahma embodies the absolute being. The individual gods have their saints, their traditions and meditation teachings. The Hindus belong to the third largest religious community in the world and live mainly in India. Its membership is estimated at 1.1 billion.





Is Buddha a God?
Believers argue about whether Buddha is a god figure. For many, he serves as a role model and is a teacher. Because he has successfully contested the path to enlightenment. Buddha therefore gives the believers many hints on how they can also experience enlightenment at the end of their life. His tips make it understandable who Buddha was: Generous, patient, wise, loving and he meditated a lot. There are 500 million Buddhists in the world. Most of them in South and East Asia.





Sources: Weltanschauungen research group in Germany, Pew Research Institute

Not all people are convinced that there is a superior being. Others believe that there is something, but cannot name this being. Since no one has met God personally in the 21st century, the question of what he looks like, whether there are several and which properties he has, remains mystical.


Image rights: All symbol images of the five world religions come from Wikipedia Commons.