The latest in a series of articles exploring how Kenya’s religious cultures are changing and are being affected by the rise of a growing population.
In a recent poll conducted by the Kenya Association for Religion and Culture, more than half of the respondents (56%) of Kenyans surveyed said that they had witnessed or experienced religious discrimination.
The majority (63%) of those surveyed described religious people as being ‘over-sensitive and controlling’.
More than half (56%), however, believed that they were being discriminated against in their own daily lives.
Many Kenyas say they see little opportunity to contribute to this change, and some even believe that the country has gone too far.
The number of Kenys living in urban areas has risen sharply, which is likely to have a negative impact on the country’s religious and cultural identity.
‘People are moving out to the country, and we’re seeing a lot of people coming back from the countryside,’ said one respondent.
‘In my community, there’s been a lot more people moving back, and I think that’s because we have a lot less people living there.
‘I don’t know what to think about it.
It’s been difficult, because there are lots of people who are moving back to their own homes.
It seems to be the norm.
‘It’s hard to feel connected to the land, because I’m afraid to go out and work there.
We are also living in a world where there are so many new people coming to our country, it feels like a big change is happening.
‘There’s also the fact that people have become more mobile and more urbanised.
I think this is what’s happening now, too, because they’re moving out of the countryside and into the city.
‘We’ve lost so much time, so much money, and so much opportunity.
People are moving away and it’s affecting us.
‘But we need to be a part of it and I believe that it’s a good thing.’
Kenya is one of the most religious countries in the world.
The country has one of Africa’s highest levels of religion, with more than 60% of Kenyaans claiming to have attended religious services in the past year.
However, some believe that Kenyastans are over-sensitive to the spread of Christianity and are becoming less tolerant of religious practices.
They believe that in a country where almost two-thirds of the population is Muslim, religious practices should be ‘more tolerant’ and ‘respectful’.
‘It has come to the point where it’s become too much, when we go out, we’re expected to follow the rules,’ said an elder of a congregation.
‘The more we can go against the rules, the more we will lose our religious identity.’
I’ve noticed that people are not as religious as they used to be, they are more accepting of other religions, and they are less religious than they used the past.
They don’t feel they have to follow all the rules.
‘When I went to a meeting of the Kenya Conference of Muslim Youth last week, I had to follow them because we were told we had to obey the rules.’
The number and intensity of religious celebrations is increasing in many areas, with many of them happening in the city centre, and many of those religious celebrations are now becoming less formal.
This trend is reflected in the number of people attending worship services.
The Kenyan Association for Religious Culture reported that the number and volume of religious services have increased by 40% in the last year, with a significant increase in the numbers of people going to religious services.
‘Our people are now attending more religious services than ever before,’ said a spokesperson for the Kenya Islamic Society.
‘More and more, the number is going up and it doesn’t matter if it’s at a mosque or a church or a synagogue.
We’ve lost our faith and we’ve become secular.’
The president of the Association of Kenyan Muslims, Mohammed Haidar, said that he believes that the trend is not only happening in urban Kenya, but in many rural areas too.
‘Many people are moving to the city, because of the lack of religious space in their villages, and it makes them feel like they have more space to go to church or synagogue,’ he said.
‘Even if you are a non-Muslim, if you can go to a church you can get more and more followers.
‘For the next generation, it will be a different atmosphere.
They will go to churches more, and then mosques.
And when you go to mosques, you can pray in front of them, and that’s not the case now.
‘Religious people are no longer seen as a threat to society and there is a growing acceptance of other faiths.
We have a large number of non-Muslims, too.
They are also becoming more tolerant of others.’
But some Kenyasts believe that there is more to this trend than a shift in religious behaviour.
‘They have no faith in the future of