The following list of religious leaders is taken directly from Living Biographies of Religious Leaders by Henry Thomas and Dana Lee Thomas, Garden City, New York: Garden City Books (1959), one volume in the Thomas's classic Living Biographies series.
Adherents.com has no position about whether or not these are really history's greatest or most influential religious leaders. Clearly this list represents the perspective of Henry and Dana Lee Thomas, who are historians and biogaphers.
Other Living Biographies Books by Henry and Dana Lee Thomas are about: Great Philosophers; Great Scientists; Great Composers; Great Poets; Great Painters; Famous Novelists; Famous Women.
If you have an alternative list of religious leaders which you would like included here, please write us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
|Zoroaster||founder of Zoroastrianism|
|Buddha||founder of Buddhism|
|Confucius||founder of Confucianism|
|John the Baptist||prophet and contemporary of Jesus Christ|
|Mohammed||Prophet of Islam|
|St. Francis of Assisi||early Christian theologian|
|John Huss||Bohemian Christian reformer; founder of Czech Hussites|
|Martin Luther||primary founder of Protestantism|
|Loyola||theologian and founder of Jesuits|
|Calvin||founder of Calvinist branch of Protestantism|
|George Fox||founder of Quakers|
|John Wesley||founder of Methodist movement|
|Swedenborg||founder of Swedenborgianism|
|Brigham Young||2nd prophet of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints|
|Mary Baker Eddy||founder of Christian Science|
|Gandhi||Hindu reformer and Indian political leader; mother was a Jain|
Other categories in the DeVore/Linford Series are: Explorers, Scientists, Inventors, Writers, Painters, Composers, and Leaders.
I had dipped into records of past prophets during my Earth research. Zarathustra. Jesus. Mohammed. Shabbetai Tzevi, the seventeenth-century Turkish Jew who had claimed to be Messiah, and who in the end had apostatized and become a Moslem Al Mahdi, who had defeated the British at Khartoum. Joseph Smith, who had read the Word of God from golden tablets with special glasses, and Brigham Young...Although Bear's fiction often incorporates theological and sociolgical themes, Bear himself does not claim to be a theologian or historian by training. This list of major prophets is Bear's attempt to describe the perspective of somebody living about 100 years in the future. Naturally, the list also reflects Bear's own perspective--that of a popular writer, futurist, and commentator on society who lives in the Pacific Northwestern United States. (Bear himself has stated he does not believe in any contemporary religion, but is fascinated by the subject.)
Agnes of Assisi
Agnes of Montepulciano
Agnes of Poitiers
Aidan of Lindisfarne
Akiba Ben Joseph
Anselm of Canterbury
Augustine of Canterbury
Augustine of Hippo
Ba'al Shem Tov
Bede the Venerable
Bellarmine, Saint Robert
Benedict of Aniane
Benedict of Nursia
Benedict the Black
Bernard of Clairvaux
Brennan, Francis Joseph, Cardinal
Cajetan of Thiene
Carroll, John (1735-1815)
Christina the Astonishing
Eddy, Mary Baker
Francis of Assisi
Harris, Barbara Clementine
Innocent III, Pope
Joan of Arc
John Paul, Popes
Kobo Daishi, or Kukai
Loyola, Ignatius of
Moody, Dwight L.
Mott, John R.
Newman, John Henry
Ockham, William of
Paul (Ad 10?-67?)
Russell, Charles Taze
Sa`adia Ben Joseph
Smith, Joseph (1805-44)
Weber, Max (1864-1920)
Ximenes, or Jim*nez, De Cisneros, Francisco
Other people voted for an ideological leader important to them (Martin Luther King Jr., Mohandas Gandhi or Ronald Reagan). Jews and Israelis voted for Yitzhak Rabin. People who value pop culture put Elvis Presley at the top. Adolf Hitler's third place ranking is probably a result of people trying to make an accurate historical assessment of who had the most impact. They certainly don't endorse his actions, but recognize his importance.
|Martin Luther King Jr.||381,462|
|Pope John Paul II||372,015|
|Gordon B. Hinckley*||255,026|
|*Hinckley is president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.|
|Source: Time Web site www.pathfinder.com/time/|