Beliefnet
Religion 101

In this blog, I try to make a point of mentioning important holy days (“holidays”), and other significant dates on the religious calendars of many of the world’s major faith traditions, as they come up. Such dates are, of course, quite literally sacred to significant percentages of the world’s population, and to large numbers of people of faith around the globe.

This upcoming Sunday (February 3, 2013) is a date of momentous significance for a great many people — people of every faith, as well as of none.

This Sunday, an event will occur which will command the attention, fire the emotions, and provoke the allegiances of many millions of people. An annual “peak experience” for vast numbers of attendees as well as remote viewers, Sunday’s upcoming event is a heavily promoted and immensely anticipated yearly occasion, one which figures prominently upon the calendars of the “faithful” who eagerly look forward to its coming, and for whom it functions almost literally as a compellingly “sacred” event.

February 3, 2013 is Super Bowl Sunday.

Last year, over 111 million people watched 2012’s Super Bowl. Let that sink in for a moment: 111 million people. Let’s compare that with some other numbers — like the total global populations of some of the religions of the world.

That’s more than the total number of Sikhs (23 million) in the world.

That’s more than the total number of Jews (14 million) in the world.

That’s more than the total number of Mormons (14 million) in the world.

That’s more than the total number of Taoists (8 million) in the world.

That’s more than the total number of Baha’is (7 million) in the world.

That’s more than the total number of Jains (6 million) in the world.

That’s more than the total number of Shintoists (4 million) in the world.

That’s more than the total number of Wiccans (1 million) in the world.

That’s more than the total number of Rastafarians (1 million) in the world.

That’s more than the total number of Unification Church members (0.5 million).

That’s more than the total number of Scientologists (0.15 million) in the world.

That’s more than the total number of Zoroastrians (0.15 million) in the world.

Last year’s Super Bowl viewership was, in fact, far larger than than the grand total of all of the world’s Sikhs, Jews, Mormons, Taoists, Bahai’s, Jains, Shintoists, Wiccans, Rastafarians, Unification Church members, Scientologists, and Zoroastrians, combined.

Just thought that was interesting.

Oh — and according to a recent poll, 27% of Americans said that they seriously believe that God himself has a hand in determining who actually wins the Super Bowl.

Just thought that was interesting, too.

 

 

 

 

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