Thursday, December 31, 2009

Buddhism by Numbers (Pew Survey)

Hoko Jan Karnegis
(Tricycle Magazine) When you think of the words "American Buddhist," what do you see? Someone White, middle-aged, no kids? An adult convert from Protestantism? Someone with a graduate degree, living in the western United States?

The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life's "2008 U.S. Religious Landscape Survey," released in late February, may provide some new clues about what American Buddhists are like. The Pew Forum conducted more than 35,000 telephone surveys with adult respondents, 0.7% of whom identified themselves as Buddhist.

A caveat: While the resulting figures are interesting and may be useful in evaluating American Sangha development, care must be taken in relying heavily on them. The margin for error is +6.5%, and only 411 respondents identified themselves as Buddhist. Also, Hawaii, home to a significant number of Buddhists, was not included in the survey. Nonetheless, larger trends and themes emerge and help to point out where further study is needed. More>>

Kate Moss spends another New Year in Thailand
(Daily Mail Reporter) Kate Moss has escaped the gloom and grey of London at New Year and yet again swapped it for a New Year's break in Thailand.... [T]he slim model and boyfriend Jamie Hince spent New Year's Eve taking a boat trip and walking along golden sands together. More>>

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