Religions in Cambodia

Religions in Cambodia

Cambodia is a diverse country with various cultures and religions. Thearavada Buddhism is the national religion. In a total population, 95 percent of is practicing this religion just like that of Thailand, Burma, Sri Lanka. However, Christianity and Cham Muslim are being active and popular among a large number of population as well in the capital and provinces, showing a sign of growth. Daoism and Confuism are also commonly practiced among the Chinese people, and tribal animism making up the bulk of the remainder; and Hinduism. Below are the main religions the majority of Cambodian people are practicing.

Thearavada Buddhism

Thearavada Buddhism requires followers to practice and respect so many strict rules. Buddhist monks are highly disciplined and must follow 227 rules in addition to the ten basic precepts of being a good Buddhist. Monks cannot take part in entertainment. They lead simple lives dedicated to Buddhism and the temple. In Thearavada Buddhism, people and monks believe in sin and result. Buddhists see the universe and all life as part of a cycle of eternal change. They follow the teaching of Buddha, an Indian prince born in the sixth century B.C. Buddhists believe that a person is continually reborn, in human or nonhuman form, depending on his or her actions in a previous life. They are released from this cycle only when thy reach nirvana, which may be attained by achieving good karma through earning merit and following the Buddhist path of correct living. Earning merit is an important of Buddhist life. Buddhists in Cambodia earn merit by giving money, goods, and labor to the temples, or by providing one of the two daily meals of the monks.

Buddhism is based on three concepts: dharma (the doctrine of the Buddha, his guide to right actions and belief); karma (the belief that one’s life now and in future lives depends upon one’s own deeds and misdeeds and that as an individual one is responsible for, and rewarded on the basis of, the sum total of one’s acts and act’s incarnations past and present); and sangha, the ascetic community within which man can improve his karma.

Children often look after the fruits trees and vegetable gardens inside their local wat, or temple. Boys can earn merit by becoming temple servants or novice monks for a short time. Most young men remain monks for less than a year.


Hinduism was one of the Khmer Empire’s official religions. Cambodia is the home to one of the only two temples dedicated to Brahma in the world. Cambodian people still practice Hinduism in their daily life in articular when people are getting sick and losing vale belonging or feel sense of bad luck. They will prepare things to offer so that they are getting better. Watering from the monk is also one among other activities in Hinduism.


Islam is the religion of a majority of the Cham and Malay minorities in Cambodia. The Cham have their own mosques and schools. They are free to practice their culture and religion in Cambodia. Cambodia government gives them a good choice to study either in Khmer School or their school. Sometimes, Cham studies in both schools. At the end of the nineteenth century, the Muslims in Cambodia formed a unified community under the authority of four religious dignitaries—mupti, tuk kalih, raja kalik, and tvan pake. Each Muslim community has a hakem who leads the community and the mosque, an imam who leads the prayers, and a bilal who calls the faithful to the daily prayers. The peninsula of Chrouy Changvar near Phnom Penh is considered the spiritual center of the Cham, and several high Muslim officials reside there.

Not difference from Islam, Christianity followers have rights to practice their religion in Cambodia territory. Some local people change their religion from Buddhism to Christianity. Catholic is most popular and practicing in Cambodia with the support from many country around the globe. They open their establishment and start delivering free of charge language classes and place to stay and other fun and charity activities to Cambodian people. There are around 20,000 Catholics in Cambodia, which represents 0.15% of the total population.

Indigenous beliefs

The Khmer Loeu have been loosely described as animists, but most indigenous ethnic groups have their own pantheon of local spirits. In general they see their world filled with various invisible spirits (often called yang), some benevolent, others malevolent. They associate spirits with rice, soil, water, fire, stones, paths, and so forth.


Cambodian people have different perceptions and ideologies according to the religion they believe in, still we are unity and respect each other cultures and religions.

Categories: Cultures

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