Best Author-Created Religions

Please add any books in which the author has created an original (fictional) religion, philosophical or theological framework as a key element.

Note, this is *not* a list for conventional (of any denomination) religious books.
1

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4.16 avg rating — 322,956 ratings
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2

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4.22 avg rating — 663,847 ratings
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3

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4.22 avg rating — 1,313,983 ratings
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4

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3.92 avg rating — 263,293 ratings
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5

by
3.92 avg rating — 200,225 ratings
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6

by
4.07 avg rating — 96,380 ratings
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7

by
3.69 avg rating — 347 ratings
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8

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4.10 avg rating — 1,284,280 ratings
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9

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4.45 avg rating — 1,868,164 ratings
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10

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3.98 avg rating — 1,331,549 ratings
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11

by
4.11 avg rating — 705,047 ratings
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12

by
4.16 avg rating — 48,262 ratings
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13

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3.98 avg rating — 85,445 ratings
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14

by
4.19 avg rating — 58,594 ratings
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15

by
4.15 avg rating — 205 ratings
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16

by
4.03 avg rating — 66,820 ratings
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17

by
4.12 avg rating — 182,129 ratings
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18

by
3.81 avg rating — 6,676 ratings
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19

by
4.16 avg rating — 377,065 ratings
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20

by
4.16 avg rating — 104,817 ratings
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21

by
4.09 avg rating — 82,450 ratings
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22

by
2.54 avg rating — 823 ratings
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23

by
4.24 avg rating — 168,823 ratings
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24

by
4.26 avg rating — 99,546 ratings
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24

by
4.15 avg rating — 30,412 ratings
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26

by
really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 290,164 ratings
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27

by
4.60 avg rating — 58,558 ratings
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27

by
3.83 avg rating — 272 ratings
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29

by
4.07 avg rating — 211,908 ratings
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30

by
4.15 avg rating — 54,021 ratings
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31

by
4.18 avg rating — 108 ratings
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32

by
4.19 avg rating — 353,259 ratings
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32

by
4.46 avg rating — 13 ratings
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32

by
4.67 avg rating — 6 ratings
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35

by
4.83 avg rating — 6 ratings
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36

by
4.83 avg rating — 6 ratings
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37

by
4.26 avg rating — 135,693 ratings
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37

by
it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 5 ratings
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39

by
it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 5 ratings
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40

by
4.43 avg rating — 7 ratings
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41

by
4.60 avg rating — 5 ratings
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42

by
3.94 avg rating — 17,972 ratings
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42

by
3.88 avg rating — 60,324 ratings
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44

by
4.16 avg rating — 1,702 ratings
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45

by
3.69 avg rating — 4,415 ratings
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45

by
4.12 avg rating — 2,181 ratings
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45

by
4.14 avg rating — 1,868 ratings
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48

by
3.88 avg rating — 82,842 ratings
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49

by
3.83 avg rating — 2,323 ratings
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50

by
4.22 avg rating — 2,133 ratings
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50

by
4.27 avg rating — 13,933 ratings
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50

by
4.06 avg rating — 98,867 ratings
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50

by
3.92 avg rating — 776 ratings
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50

by
3.83 avg rating — 2,141 ratings
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50

by
4.67 avg rating — 6 ratings
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50

by
4.22 avg rating — 86 ratings
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50

by
4.48 avg rating — 46 ratings
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50

by
4.07 avg rating — 15 ratings
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50

by
3.65 avg rating — 17 ratings
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50

by
3.84 avg rating — 238 ratings
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50

by
3.38 avg rating — 2,613 ratings
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50

by
4.29 avg rating — 95,301 ratings
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50

by
4.67 avg rating — 3 ratings
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64

by
4.17 avg rating — 41,426 ratings
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65

by
really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 2,698 ratings
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65

by
3.71 avg rating — 5,278 ratings
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65

by
4.38 avg rating — 96,379 ratings
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68

by
4.34 avg rating — 54,367 ratings
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68

by
4.20 avg rating — 57,039 ratings
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70

by
4.18 avg rating — 156,072 ratings
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70

by
4.16 avg rating — 1,683 ratings
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72

by
3.37 avg rating — 73 ratings
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72

by
3.79 avg rating — 17,302 ratings
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72

by
4.20 avg rating — 12,252 ratings
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72

by
4.09 avg rating — 13,123 ratings
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72

by
4.17 avg rating — 1,697 ratings
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77

by
3.94 avg rating — 3,405 ratings
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77

by
3.97 avg rating — 26,384 ratings
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77

by
4.21 avg rating — 1,528 ratings
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80

by
3.89 avg rating — 5,310 ratings
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80

by
3.89 avg rating — 4,419 ratings
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80

by
4.23 avg rating — 1,552 ratings
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83

by
really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 1,257 ratings
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84

by
3.53 avg rating — 558,249 ratings
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84

by
4.18 avg rating — 1,354 ratings
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86

by
4.08 avg rating — 1,127 ratings
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86

by
3.71 avg rating — 89 ratings
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88

by
really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 1,021 ratings
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88

by
4.41 avg rating — 17,610 ratings
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90

by
3.82 avg rating — 5,311 ratings
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90 books · 106 voters · list created August 8th, 2010 by Jennifer (aka EM) (votes) .
13 likes · 
Lists are re-scored approximately every 5 minutes.


Jennifer (aka EM) 1648 books
102 friends
Manny 3607 books
4876 friends
Marvin 2090 books
741 friends
Susanna - Censored by GoodReads 3160 books
832 friends
John 128 books
792 friends
Emma 222 books
58 friends
Terence 4805 books
178 friends
Michelle 4358 books
53 friends

More voters…


Comments Showing 1-17 of 17 (17 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by jo (new)

jo i don't know of any!!!!


message 2: by Manny (new)

Manny Check out Luskentyrianism ( Whit, Or Isis Among The Unsaved ).


message 3: by Marvin (new)

Marvin It is tempting to put Dianetics on this list but I'll resist it;)


message 4: by Jennifer (aka EM) (last edited Aug 08, 2010 09:35AM) (new)

Jennifer (aka EM) manny, perfect! I am *so* going to read this...soon, I promise (great review, btw)

ETA: I added it to the list even tho' I've not yet read it.


Jennifer (aka EM) jo wrote: "i don't know of any!!!!"

I'm sure I've read more than I've listed, but I'm drawing a blank too!


Jennifer (aka EM) Marvin wrote: "It is tempting to put Dianetics on this list but I'll resist it;)"

hahah! thank you for adding S of T -- I forgot that one (gah, and I just re-read it too!).


message 7: by Manny (new)

Manny jakaem wrote: "manny, perfect! I am *so* going to read this...soon, I promise (great review, btw)"

Thank you! It's really a fun book.

Oh, and I just remembered that there's another nice fictional religion in Damon Knight's Analogue Men - it's a kind of wacky version of Satanism. The Prayer of Thanks starts something like this:

"For thy curses, All-Lowest, we thank Thee; lift not Thy maleficient rump from us; let Thy darkness enfold our steps..."


Jennifer (aka EM) Manny wrote: Thank you! It's really a fun book.

Oh, and I just remembered that there's another nice fictional..."


I'll add that one too.

Here's a question for all on the thread: are made-up religions *always* satirical? I think not (which is why Earthseed fails for me as a literary device). But Atwood's God's Gardeners is so fascinating (and, I'd say, so successful) because of the ambiguity of the satire.

... just mulling ... it's Sunday after all. ;-)


message 9: by Manny (last edited Aug 08, 2010 10:48AM) (new)

Manny I'm not sure Bokononism is entirely satirical. It's quite beautiful in some ways.

A couple more candidates! How did we forget the Followers of the Second Coming of the Great Prophet Zarquon from Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy? The scene where he makes his belated appearance is one of my favourites. And, a much more obscure one, Dort-worship, from Mose Mallette. I must post about this!


message 10: by Manny (new)

Manny OK, look here.


message 11: by Manny (new)

Manny Non-satirical made-up religions: how about the one in the Dune books, e.g. God Emperor of Dune?


Jennifer (aka EM) Bokononism non-satirical? A religion founded on foma? Maybe you're right, maybe the irony swallows itself like a snake swallowing its own tail.

I haven't read Dune.

And Hitchhiker's Guide! Yes, a grievous omission ... I'll add that one, coz at least I've read it...


Jennifer (aka EM) ... trying to remember if Another Roadside Attraction has a fully articulated counter-religion to the Catholicism it mocks... hmmmmm. Anyone?


message 14: by [deleted user] (last edited Aug 08, 2010 12:12PM) (new)

jakaem wrote: "... trying to remember if Another Roadside Attraction has a fully articulated counter-religion to the Catholicism it mocks... hmmmmm. Anyone?"

I'd say no. I'd vote yes on the Dune books too.

ETA: Eeeeeeeeeeeeek! Equus


Jennifer (aka EM) Manny wrote: "OK, look here."

truly odd.

Ceridwen wrote: "ETA: Eeeeeeeeeeeeek! Equus..."

Yikes. :-(


message 16: by Ross (new)

Ross H Of course there were "clever" people who voted for the Bible and Qu'ran.


message 17: by Radclyffe U-Haul (last edited May 18, 2016 08:11PM) (new)

Radclyffe U-Haul Were any of the gods in American Gods created by Gaiman? I guess the forgotten god was (and Delirium of the Endless makes a cameo) but the others are based on existing religion/folklore.


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