Second to that are those who call themselves followers of Mohammed who is said to have founded "Islam" (~1.7 billion).
Nevertheless, a very tiny religion by comparison, Judaism, (~15 million), controls the city where they all focus their religious sentiments: Jerusalem (a.k.a. Ground Zero in this post).
And those sentiments are hard core:
Israel's leader on Sunday dismissed a call from a key government partner to share the holy city of Jerusalem with the Palestinians, a reminder of the obstacles facing already troubled peacemaking efforts.(Raw Story). I suppose it is more accurate to say that a tiny minority of a tiny religious minority controls the dialogue at Ground Zero, and thereby the prospects for peace or war.
Conflicting claims to east Jerusalem lie at the heart of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The dispute over the area, home to sensitive Jewish, Muslim and Christian holy sites, has derailed past peace talks and spilled into violence. Palestinians claim the sector as the capital of their future state.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's reaffirmation of his intention to hold on to east Jerusalem drew criticism from the Palestinians and was likely to increase friction with the Americans. The White House Mideast envoy is scheduled to arrive this week in another attempt to push peace efforts forward.
That is so Washington, and so dysfunctional in the sense that both nations call themselves democratic, but invade other sovereign nations to bring "democracy" to them.
The Ground Zero, at least in the middle east, has heart strings that reach around the globe, so, should the hatred and warmongering persist and increase by feverish political rhetoric masking an under-the-covers religious fervour, there is a broader danger which implicates more than the mid east alone.
The secular Oilah Akbar religion wafting over, above, under, and through the states of oil around Ground Zero, absolutely armed to the nuclear teeth, add to the weighty danger lurking in those crude religious surroundings.