History of religion timeline map

Posted on Friday, May 25th, 02007 by Alexander Rose - Twitter: @zander
link Categories: Long Shorts, Long Term Thinking, The Big Here   chat 0 Comments


Submitted by Dan Mosedale this animated map/timeline of the last 5000 years of religion is really fantastic. Also another take on that was submitted by Kevin Kelly.  I also just came across this great Historical Atlas page.

  • BenGreen

    This map is so absurdly incomplete it’s aesthetic worth is – I think – totally undermined. It would’ve been much more interesting had they dispensed with the colored lines in the time line and instead shown the sparkling colors of the diverse pagan religions of Europe, pre-Colombian America, and Africa. In it’s day the Mayan civilization was larger than any in Europe, yet the America’s appear “empty” before the arrival of Christianity. The two token non-Abrahamic religions presented are just that, tokens. They only serve to highlight the creators’ own personal biases and lack of information.

  • The Worm

    While the map is informative and fascinating, I would suggest that the choice of religions on display is anachronistic–i.e., the author only chose to display them because they are presently significant. It does not display the many failed religions that once dominated large, influential civilizations, and a future incarnation of such a map might ignore currently significant faiths if they come to be extinct. Moreover, the failed religions themselves did not entirely disappear, but blended many elements of mythology and ritual into those that succeeded them and remain today. Perceiving these threads that persist, weaving and unweaving while civilizations rise and fall around them, is a useful exercise for the Long Now Foundation that may benefit its own ability to persist.

  • Matt

    I love the idea but it’s been so over simplified it’s almost propaganda.
    Over lapping transparencies would be more useful, the either/or approach is just not convincing.

    Still interesting to see very little progress in terms of land exchange, is really made by any religion once a major memeplex has taken hold.

    (What about atheism?)

  • Brian

    It would be impossible to show the spread of Atheism because the majority of Atheists have had to remain hidden.

  • Sturobk

    to call atheism a religeon defeats the entire point of atheism, as religeon requires a belief system…therefore it shouldnt be on the map anyway.

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