RELIGION OF NEPAL

The most widespread in the country is Hinduism, declared the state religion and professed by 86.2% of the population. Hinduism practiced by the Nepalese is presented in the form of Shaivism and also includes elements of Buddhism. A noticeable part of the population, incl. gurungs and sherpas, adhere to Buddhism (7.8%). Most Buddhists are adherents of the Lamaist variety of Mahayana (the northern branch of Buddhism). There are 3.8% of Muslims in the country, they are concentrated mainly in the Terai zone. There are also followers of Christianity (2%). Among the peoples of the Tibetan-Himalayan group, traditional beliefs are preserved.

Indian brahmana monks are very influential in Nepalese society, but clerics from other religious communities also enjoy authority with their flock.