Study reveals Saudi society open to integration with other religions, cultures

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A recent field study on societal coexistence in Saudi Arabia has revealed that Saudis are welcoming to the idea of religious diversity in society.

The study was conducted by the Department of Studies and Research at the King Abdul Aziz Center for National Dialogue under the title: “Coexistence in Saudi society.” It targeted four geographical regions: The Eastern region (Dammam, Hofuf, Al-Mubarraz, and Khobar) Medina, Makkah and Najran.

The sample size was 3,140 males and females over 18 years. The percentage of males was 77 percent, compared to 23 percent for women. The survey included 114 field researchers who conducted interviews in 59 residential neighborhoods.

The main findings of the study are:

95 percent wish good for all, regardless of their religion or sect

95 percent respect others who have different doctrines.

88 percent treat others positively no matter if they have different point of view.

90 percent try to stay away from everything that would raise grudges between them and those who have different doctrine.

84 percent accept co-workers who have different doctrine.

82 percent believe that everyone is free to choose the doctrine they want without being forced

61 percent do not mind that there would be places of worship for those with different doctrine.

77 percent do not mind to live in the same building where their neighbor follow a different doctrine.

55 percent refuse to become in-laws with someone with different doctrine

91 percent seek to spread a culture of tolerance with others

84 percent appreciate relations with others on the basis of citizenship and civil peace

76 percent are ready to talk and exchange views with those of a different religion

Concerning doctrinal beliefs, 81 percent asserted that they consider others’ beliefs as a cultural privacy

72 percent respects other’s doctrine and do not mind his right to pray in public places

78 percent believes that media shows had contributed a lot in arousing strife between different doctrines

86 percent cooperate and do business with others who follow different doctrines

While 77 percent do not mind hiring people of other religions in their own companies.

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