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No matter the personal beliefs or religion: digital assets are available for everyone, in any part of the world. Cryptocurrencies and religion are compatible, although sometimes it doesn’t seem so. That’s because some specific religions, like Islam, consider the use of these tokens as a sin. But there’s always a solution for them and even more opportunities for the rest.

Sometimes it’s easily forgotten, but cryptocurrencies are nothing else than a useful (financial) tool. Just like any other new technology. So, the religious people can also take this tool and make with it whatever they want, in the way they want. And that’s exactly what some of them are doing now. Let’s check some religious initiatives with cryptos.

Cryptocurrencies for Muslims

The Sharia (Muslim law) can be interpreted in different ways about cryptocurrencies. Some experts believe they are Haram (sin and banned), because of their similarity to gambling, which is totally forbidden. It may also be equated to “riba” (usury). Religious authorities in Egypt, Turkey, Palestine, and Russia have adopted this position.

Image by hashem islami from Pixabay

Others believe they’re Halal (permissible), because they’re digital assets that can be bought and sold according to the market, and not exactly means for gambling. In any case, there are some cryptocurrencies specially designed for the Islamic religion.

One of those projects is the altcoin dubbed “Caizcoin”. This one can be used for international transfers, shopping, and even liquidity mining on Uniswap. But more important for the Muslim investors: it’s fully compliant with the Islamic financial rules. Besides, it’s not involved with “companies that are active in areas such as arms, tobacco, adult industry, alcohol, or pork industry”.

Another project is the DeFi platform “Marhaba”. By using it, the investors will have access to liquidity mining, staking, Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs), and charity inside the Ethereum blockchain. All this, being Sharia-compliant at the same time.

Cryptocurrencies for Buddhists

Unlike the Islam case, the Buddhist “rules” are much less tightening. Besides, according to the Buddhist non-profit “A Skeptic’s Path to Enlightenment”:

“One view of Bitcoin’s value aligns with the Buddhist view of emptiness. In this view, the baselessness of cryptocurrency may make it a more ideal form of currency than anything ever dreamed of, because its value can grow as big as our imagination”.

Image by Skeptic’s Path to Enlightenment

By the way, this non-profit accepts Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other cryptocurrencies. As for the related projects, there have been several attempts. Probably the most remarkable was the Lotos Network, a community of Buddhist students and teachers inside Ethereum. They would pay a monthly fee to access content and activities, and be rewarded with Karma Tokens. Sadly, the platform doesn’t seem active anymore.

Currently, there’s an active crypto-project about NFTs. Dubbed “CryptoAmulets”, it’s offering unique charms for good luck in the form of NFTs. They assure that these “CryptoAmulets” are blessed by LP Heng, a 95 years-old Guru Monk, who is a “grand master of spells and charms”. That’s a way to combine cryptocurrencies and religion, at least.

Cryptocurrencies for Jewish

The Torah (Jewish law) governs the lives of practitioners of Judaism, and also includes certain financial rules. Just like with Muslims, usury is forbidden. Nevertheless, Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are considered commodity-like assets and their good or bad uses depend entirely on the investors. So, usury (like loans with interests) is forbidden in this religion, but not the cryptocurrencies themselves.

Indeed, some Jewish crypto-adopters believe that the cypherpunk ethos is complementary to Judaism. Besides, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies can offer financial sovereignty, something very useful for a people as historically persecuted as the Jews.

They’re able to use almost any kind of cryptocurrency, but there’s one that was made specifically thinking in Jews. This is the altcoin “BitCoen”, whose mission is to “create a swift, decentralized and secure network that unites communities in a global ecosystem”.

The first of these communities were the Jewish people, but later the Turkish, Russian, and JustSwap communities (inside the Tron platform), also joined the project. BitCoen (BEN) has its own blockchain without mining and offers faster transactions at no cost.

Cryptocurrencies for Catholics

Of course, Catholics are essentially secular, which means that religion is separated from politics and law. So, they shouldn’t follow any religious rules in the financial world (aside from the ones established by their countries). Any catholic can invest freely in cryptocurrencies, and they even have some sense of humor about it.

Some parody tokens have been appearing for years now. One of them is JesusCoin (JC), an ERC-20 token on Ethereum whose purpose was to “decentralize” Jesus on the blockchain. Another one was the Vaticoin, a supposed token that would be issued by the Vatican to raise funds.

Image by Thomas B. from Pixabay

Regarding that and despite the joke, it seems like the Vatican actually considered issuing some sort of “Catholic Bitcoin”. This currency, according to BitMint, would bring “a built-in cut taken from the recipient of the currency in any transaction. The cut will be marked as Vatican-Owned, and convertible per its current rate to any fiat currency which will be managed by the Pope apparatus towards help and support for the poorest people on Earth”.

It wasn’t entirely a bad idea, but we haven’t seen any more of it. As an interesting fact, Luke Dashjr, one of the most prominent and earliest Bitcoin Core developers, is a declared Catholic.

Cryptocurrencies as other religion

Certain bitcoiners consider this world as its own religion, but the former Augur CEO Matt Liston took this to the next level. Liston (who grew up Jewish), created a new blockchain-based religion inside a platform on Ethereum, dubbed “0xΩ” (Zero Ex Omega). They’re not exactly planning to worship the blockchain itself, but the consensus system. According to Liston’s words:

“We’re incentivizing mindsharing, and eventually mind upload to use consensus to form a structure of collective consciousness. And then, we’ll elevate an individual interaction with a religious structure as a group participation in a collective consciousness where the structure itself is god”.

Zero Ex Omega, as a blockchain protocol, also involves crypto-art and charity donations. We haven’t seen any recent updates about this project, though. However, apparently, they’ve been tweeting a lot of cryptic messages.

In any case, as we’ve already seen, there are numerous crypto-alternatives for religious people. This one is only another, just in case you’re not very happy with your current beliefs.

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I'm a literature professional in the crypto world since 2016. It doesn't sound very compatible, but I've been learning and teaching about blockchain and cryptos for international portals since then. After hundreds of articles and diverse content about the topic, now you can find me here on Alfacash, working for more decentralization.

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