Monday, August 25, 2008

Gold medal winning countries in the 2008 Olympics by religion

For entertainment purposes only, Cranmer has analysed the Olympic medals table by each nation’s religious culture. He could have done it for the whole medals table, but by limiting it to Gold medals only, the ‘Best in the World’ is more evident. Cranmer wishes to emphasise that this has nothing to do with the expressed devotion of each athlete, and neither does it constitute any attempt to assess sporting achievement in proportion to sincerity of devotion: it is an analysis by the predominant religion of each country by cultural expression or expressed adherence.

The categorisation of each country was drawn mainly from on-line surveys, including information from Wikipedia, and is not therefore in any sense scientific. Cranmer has not subdivided Islam or Buddhism into their denominations, and Sikhism does not appear as a distinct faith, being subsumed to the dominant Hindu culture of India. Where there was a close 50/50 division in statistical data (which only occurred in two Christian nations), Cranmer generously and benevolently gave the benefit of the doubt to Rome. Where it was less close division, regrettably the lesser religion (by number, not merit!) had to give way to the greater.

Of course, statistics may be presented to show almost any desired outcome, but this table showing the number of gold medals per nation rather speaks for itself.

The Gold-medal-winning religions of the world are therefore:

Christian 210 (70% of the gold medals won by 33.06% of the world*)
Buddhist 68 (23% won by 12.24%)
Muslim 9 (3% won by 20.28%)
Shinto 9 (3% won by 0.04%)
Atheist 5 (1.6% by 14.27%)
Hindu 1 (0.3% by 13.33%)
*Worldwide percentage of adherents by religion courtesy of Wikipedia.

And of these:

Protestant 120 (57% of the 'Christian' gold medals won by 36% of Christians**)
Orthodox 46 (22% won by 11%)
Roman Catholic 44 (21% won by 53%)
**These are roughly estimated figures based on those given for denominational adherence found in The World Christian Encyclopedia.

Or, if readers and communicants prefer:

All of which goes to show the he who honours the Lord, He will honour.


His Grace is assured that tables which rank medals by Head of State have Her Majesty way ahead of Hu Jintau and George W Bush or any other professing ruler of any spiritual or temporal empire. So the Supreme Governor of the Church of England is also Supreme Governor of the World when it comes to Olympic gold medals.


Blogger mckenzie said...

According to what the saints do, they shall receive or lose rewards. It is written, I THE LORD SEARCH THE HEART, I TRY THE REINS, EVEN TO GIVE EVERY MAN ACCORDING TO HIS WAYS, AND ACCORDING TO THE FRUIT OF HIS DOINGS-Jere 17:10. God searches the heart; then, according to our ways and the fruit of our doings, we shall receive rewards.
TAKE HEED THEREFORE HOW YE HEAR: FOR WHOSOEVER HATH, TO HIM SHALL BE GIVEN-Lk 8:18. Each person is given a certain number of talents. Some will be good and faithful servants and will multiply what has been given to them. At the judgment, they will be rewarded according to what they have.

25 August 2008 at 11:59  
Blogger Little Black Sambo said...

How do you classify (for instance) the USA, Germany and the Netherlands as Protestant? Is it something about their history or culture? Otherwise wouldn't you need to find out (or perhaps you have) whether there were more Protestants than Catholics in those countries?

25 August 2008 at 13:08  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Little Black Sambo,


His Grace has quite clearly explained how he has done this. Cursory examination of statistics from numerous internet sources indicates quite clearly each nation's expressed religious adherence. His Grace has (for reasons of simplicity) apportioned each nation to its dominant culturally-expressed religion. In those nations you specify, that is Protestantism of one form or another.

25 August 2008 at 13:21  
Anonymous robust romanist said...

Of course, "Protestant" here means everything from Oneness Pentecostals to traditional Lutherans, making it a rather meaningless term. Were you to dissolve it into its constituent sects, and to divide the (un)Orthdox into their out-of-communion factions, I think we would see Holy Mother Church claiming her rightful place.

25 August 2008 at 13:27  
Anonymous oiznop said...

Robust Romanist ignores the fact that 'Roman Catholicism' means everything from the the Ratzinger version of Orthodoxy to the various chicken-sacrificing or teenager-crucifying cults.

According to Wikipedia:

"Religion in Cuba reflects the island’s diverse cultural elements. Cuba is traditionally a Catholic country. In some instances Catholicism is much modified and influenced through syncretism. A common syncretic belief is Santería, which originated in Cuba and spread to neighboring islands; it shows similarities to Brazilian Umbanda and has been receiving a degree of official support.

Santería blends elements of Christianity and West African beliefs and as such made it possible for the slaves to retain their traditional beliefs while appearing to practice Catholicism. Cuba’s patron saint, La Virgen de la Caridad del Cobre (Our Lady Of Charity) is a syncretism with the Santería goddess Ochún."

Catholicism is just as divided.

25 August 2008 at 14:14  
Blogger Cranmer said...

If anyone cares to further sub-divide the 'Christian' nations into their denominational proportions, His Grace would be happy to publish the results.

But whilst this might mean that (say) Germany ends up dividing its medals between the Protestant and Roman Catholic communities in (say) a 9-7 split, he is confident that those denominations which are united in and defined by their rejection of papal supremacy will still be victorious, not least because those nations presently categorised as exclusively 'RC' will have their medal hauls eroded by the Protestant proportion.

25 August 2008 at 14:38  
Anonymous Miss Jellybean said...

Sikhs are less than 2% of India so they wouldn't get any medals at all. But Muslims are 13% of India and a very significant percentage of many Western countries (2 million in the USA, 14 million in Russia). If you're dividing the medals in proportion, Islam would be a lot higher than just 9.

25 August 2008 at 14:49  
Anonymous the recusant said...

Frenchman Baron Pierre de Coubertin promoted the reborn Olympics in 1894 as "a new civil religion," replete with symbols, traditions, rites and ceremonies. De Coubertin drew on his Catholic education for the official Olympic motto -- Faster, Higher, Stronger -- first coined by Dominican Father Henri Didon in an 1891 speech to the members of a sports association.

In the end there is only one race for a Christian, can we really say, "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. (2 Tim. 4:7)?

25 August 2008 at 16:43  
Blogger Miss Snuffleupagus said...

!!! You make me laugh Your Grace!

25 August 2008 at 18:41  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ESSENTIAL READING: Thank God it never got through.

25 August 2008 at 20:16  
Blogger Fred Preuss said...

Just a small question, maybe even a petty one: Why are Catholics 'Roman' Catholics?
Don't people pretty much assume that's what they are?
You don't call the Orthodox 'Eastern' Orthodox all the time-is this some sore spot or obsession left over from the 17th century or some pre-Raphaelite affectation; maybe you're still mad about "Apostolicae Curae", especially paragraph 36.

I'm an agnostic of protestant background myself, so I've no axe to grind.

25 August 2008 at 22:15  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


One Grinder. excellent condition. Genuine reason for sale. Converted to agnostic of protestant background, axe now hidden away.

25 August 2008 at 22:30  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agnosticism can be subdivided into several subcategories. Recently suggested variations include:

*Strong agnosticism (also called hard agnosticism, closed agnosticism, strict agnosticism, absolute agnosticism)—the view that the question of the existence or nonexistence of an omnipotent God and the nature of ultimate reality is unknowable by reason of our natural inability to verify any experience with anything but another subjective experience.

*Mild agnosticism (also called weak agnosticism, soft agnosticism, open agnosticism, empirical agnosticism, temporal agnosticism)—the view that the existence or nonexistence of God or gods is currently unknown but is not necessarily unknowable, therefore one will withhold judgment until/if more evidence is available.

*Apathetic agnosticism (also called Pragmatic agnosticism)—the view that there is no proof of either the existence or nonexistence of God or gods, but since any God or gods that may exist appear unconcerned for the universe or the welfare of its inhabitants, the question is largely academic anyway.

*Agnostic theism (also called religious agnosticism)—the view of those who do not claim to know existence of God or gods, but still believe in such an existence.

*Agnostic atheism—the view of those who do not know of the existence or nonexistence of God or gods, and do not believe in them.

Ignosticism—the view that a coherent definition of God must be put forward before the question of the existence of God can be meaningfully discussed. If the chosen definition isn't coherent, the ignostic holds the noncognitivist view that the existence of God is meaningless or empirically untestable. A.J. Ayer, Theodore Drange, and other philosophers see both atheism and agnosticism as incompatible with ignosticism on the grounds that atheism and agnosticism accept "God exists" as a meaningful proposition which can be argued for or against.

25 August 2008 at 22:50  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agnosticism would completely shatter me, ware me out!
One helluva place to be. hallelujah for the Grace of God upon me!

25 August 2008 at 22:54  
Blogger The Black Fingernail said...

Fred Preuss,

At least Cranmer gave the Papists purple - the colour of kings and emperors. Isn't it 'Roman' because the claim to be Catholic is contested? Don't all Christians believe in the Catholic Church, but not the Roman Catholic one? This being so, the 'Roman' prefix is there to distinguish them.

25 August 2008 at 23:17  
Blogger Fred Preuss said...

I would like an answer to the question, if it's not too much trouble.
I don't understand this 'axe' business.
B. Fingernail, thank you. But it leaves unanswered the question of why the Orthodox remain 'the Orthodox'; presumably, other churches consider their faith orthodox as well.

26 August 2008 at 01:57  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Preuss,

There is nothing more Westernophile than labelling something Eastern; it manifestly depends where in the world one is. If one is in (say) Russia, 'Eastern Orthodox' asserts that the centre of the world is located in a place where one may not desire it to be. Rome, on the other hand, remains eternally Rome.

One might have a stronger argument querying His Grace's use of the term 'Protestant', since so many have either ceased protesting or ceased knowing against what they originally protested.

26 August 2008 at 10:40  
Blogger Fred Preuss said...

That's understandable.
But they're also hardly ever referred to by their national labels (Russian, Greek, etc.). When we refer to the group of churches, they're the Orthodox.
If you put an imaginary dividing line, the West and East are simply descriptions, not value judgements or being provincial.
I'm guessing that this is more of an emotional issue, that there is still bad blood and some defensiveness.
In that case, you should get over it.
And become disestablished-this thing with bishops appointed by the government and sitting automatically in Parliament is ridiculous.
If only 5% of your population is in church on any given Sunday, pretending that you're the national church is completely arrogant and stupid.
If Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Jamaica, South Africa can do it, so can you.
Please don't tell me it's an American thing-and therefore dangerous/vulgar/un-British.

26 August 2008 at 14:36  
Blogger mckenzie said...

I think maybe they should try and get over this huge emotional issue, especially now that the cat is out of the bag and everything.

26 August 2008 at 17:21  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hindus don't get much good karma then?

Can't be may reincarnated fleas.

26 August 2008 at 20:17  
Blogger Patrick said...

China Buddhist? Yeah right.

26 August 2008 at 21:30  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

to your list of countries winning
medals afghanistan is not on your list it is a muslim country

27 August 2008 at 06:42  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Anon 06.42

And Afghanistan won how many gold medals, precisely?

27 August 2008 at 09:06  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To me it just looks like the take-away is that Christians are a fractious lot who don't rub along well, and splinter into lots of small warring nations -- unlike the Indians and Chinese.

28 August 2008 at 10:42  
Blogger Chalcedon said...

the Czechs, like all Europeans are Christian re their cultural heritage. There is a bloody huge cathedral in Prague!

31 August 2008 at 18:44  
Blogger sexy said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

14 January 2009 at 07:21  

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