What do you believe in?
Who are you: agnostic or atheist, Christian or Muslim? Actually, this question is not so important, you may think. As one friend of mine like saying, doesn't really matter what religion you belong to the main thing is what kind of person you are. And, for many reasons I agree with him. But in the same time the theme of religion itself is quite interesting and significant especially in our time.
I am very proud for my country being not only multinational but "multi-religion". The truth is that historically many different religions co-exist together in Kazakhstan. The most important thing is that almost every person could choose own faith; but sometimes it depends on family lifestyle. Well, as I'm surrounded by people of various nationalities we quite frequently have discussions about the faith. There are always the questions like "believe or not", "is the faith really makes you stronger" etc. I myself agnostic but I respect opinion and choice of other people. Answering Kim's question about the Korean Diaspora I must say that about 100, 000 Koreans currently live in the country. Naturally, I've lots of Korean friends. Some of them are the Buddhists and others are the Christians. It might be sounds odd having Buddhism or Hare Krishna in "considered-to be-Muslim" country. But! There are the followers of Hare Krishna even among my friends.
There is an only Krishna's temple in Central Asia as I know. Actually, they called it "farm" and people who "lost" their way live there having sort of "work therapy".
Hare Krishna Temple, Almaty
The fact is that Islam and Christianity have majority of followers in Kazakhstan. I really enjoy a view of mosques and churches when I pass by.
We used to never discussing faith's topic in our family, because of the Soviet time, perhaps. As you probably know, before the beginning of the World War II almost every temple on the present CIS territory had been destroyed by so-called "red army" led by Stalin. People had to hide their connection with religion, because "to believe in God" was prohibited. There is one Almaty legend that connected with that time. It said that two monks Serafim and Feognost dug in the Kyzyl-Zhar (means "red cliff") Mountain a big hole and hid the church in there. Later they were founded and shot by "red soldiers". Their remains are still in perfect condition and they are considered to be saints. The "hidden" church is still there near the "Medeo" (place where the Asian Olympic Games 2011 will be held).
I'm glad knowing that nowadays people don't have to hide any more. Moreover we have "temple of all religions" in capital city Astana. People call it "pyramid". Every three years the leaders of word confessions (about 200) will be gather in this palace to take a part in Forum.
Well, friends, am really looking forward to your point of view!