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Ethnicity, Language, & Religion of Trinidad & Tobago

Ethnicity

Trinidad & Tobago has a large percentage of ethnic Indian (Asian) people; these ethnic Indians make up about 40% of the population. These Indians include numerous ethnic groups from India and today the people are truly a combination of all these ethnic groups, most of which are from northern India. Another group of nearly the same size is ethnic Africans. Like the Indian population, the African population in Trinidad & Tobago is ethnically varied as they came from various parts of Africa, but primarily from the Western and Southern areas. Among the rest of the people, nearly all are a combination of ethnicities, including ethnic American Indians, Chinese, and Europeans.

Language

English is the only official language in Trinidad & Tobago, although various other languages exist and are natively spoken among the people. English is the official language primarily out of necessity as it is the language of communication between ethnic groups. For many citizens, English is their second language as their native language can be any number of languages, but a dialect of Hindi called Caribbean Hindustani is the most popular native language among the ethnic Indians. Caribbean Hindustani is based on the northern Indian language of Bhojpuri, but has significant local influences as well as heavy English influence. French, Spanish, and Chinese are also common native languages.

Religion

Trinidad & Tobago is fairly evenly divided when it comes to religions. About a quarter is Roman Catholic, a quarter Protestant, and a quarter Hindi. The last quarter consists of numerous groups, the largest being Muslims and other Christian groups.

Catholicism is a Christian religion that is one of the first Christian religions (founded after the death of Jesus in about 30-33 AD). Catholicism believes that there is a single God who created everything, a savior, the son of God, Jesus Christ who is the forgiver of sins, and there is the Holy Spirit, which makes up the last part of the Holy Trinity. Catholics follow the teachings of the Bible, consisting of the Old and New Testaments. Much of the faith is based on the life and teachings of Jesus, which is found in the gospels (in the New Testament).

Continue reading on Safari the Globe to Learn the Catholic Church's doctrines, liturgy, symbolism, traditions, & hierarchy

Protestantism is a general term referring to nearly every Christian religion that is not Catholic or Orthodox. Like all Christian faiths, Protestants believe there is one God and that His son, Jesus is the savior and forgiver of sins. Protestants also believe that the Bible, which includes the Old and New Testaments, is the only true word of God. Due to this reliance on the Bible, nearly every protestant faith, and even individual, may interpret the Bible differently, which has led to a huge number of Protestant churches.

Hinduism is a religion that is sometimes called a "way of life" as opposed to a religion as there are various differences in Hinduism from one believer to the next. There are also a huge number of variations of Hinduism, making it difficult to fully define due to the number of variations. There is no single higher being that is worshipped, although many followers believe in a number of gods or simply see the earth and all living beings as being sacred. There is generally a strong reliance on karma and reincarnation in the way Hindus live their lives. Many believe their actions, positive or negative, will return to benefit or hurt one's existence, now or in a future life. How a person lives this life is also often times associated with how that being will be re-born, either in a better position or worse than a being is currently in.

This page was last updated: May, 2014