Variable: Faith (religion)

To the human ecologist, religion as an institution has two components: (1) its social function as a system of organizations and rituals that bind people together into social groups (Durkheim 1938), and (2) a coherent system of beliefs and myths (Weber 1930).

Religion, like other social institutions, can be measured by diversity (range of religious practices), capacity (number of churches), or participation (percentage of the population claiming membership).

Religion impacts the social system in many ways, altering social cycles (religious holidays), providing identity for both caste and clan, and influencing beliefs and myths. A change in faith (such as increased demands after a natural disaster) can have significant bearing on how effectively social systems will adapt to new ecological and socioeconomic conditions.

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