The world's religions have emerged as one of the great geopolitical forces shaping our lives. Understanding these beliefs is crucial to understanding ethnic tension and the clash of cultures, as well as being fundamental to world peace. Even where people have moved away from formal religious practices, the legacies of traditional beliefs continue to inform their sense of self, and their values and customs. This atlas maps the impact of major world religions, their divisions and contemporary challenges. It shows, country by country, how religions spread their influence through broadcasting, missionary work, education and banking; how they relate to governments; how they help to alleviate the effect of poverty; and the role they play in conflict. The atlas covers a wide range of topics including * new religious movements * atheism and agnosticism * ethical investment * persecution and recovery * aid * sexual equality * the environment Plus the book includes an essential reference table on the fundamental beliefs of Buddhism, Christianity, Daoism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism and Sikhism.