The rise and fall of Buddhism in the West

Jeffrey Kotyk of the Flower Ornament Depository 華嚴藏 blog has a fascinating piece up today about the recent decline in web searches for Buddhism. There he discusses statistical data showing that digital mentions of Buddhism is on the decline, and in a dramatic way:

Searching for Buddhism

Searching for Buddhism

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Hinduism has faced a similar fate in recent years.

Searching for Hinduism

Searching for Hinduism

But what about Abrahamic religions? Well, here’s a look:

Searching for Judaism

Searching for Judaism

Finding Jesus

Finding Jesus

Finding Islam

Finding Islam

These are the search results, but what do they tell us about what people are actually doing on the ground? Perhaps they are a predictor of things to come? It’s complex, of course. But have a look at Jeffrey’s great discussion of the topic and let us know what you think – is Buddhism on its way out? (Along with Hinduism and Judaism) Is the future all about Christianity and Islam? (this graph suggests that it’s not so clear) And Atheism? Have a look. (It’s curious that atheism took such a dive during the publishing career of Freidrich Neitzsche and following Karl Marx and Charles Darwin.)

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