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A schism ( , , or, less commonly, ) is a division between people, usually belonging to an organization, movement, or
religious denomination A religious denomination is a subgroup within a religion Religion is a - of designated and practices, , s, s, , , , , or , that relates humanity to , , and elements; however, there is no scholarly consensus over what precisely constitut ...
. The word is most frequently applied to a split in what had previously been a single religious body, such as the Great
East–West Schism The East–West Schism (also known as the Great Schism or Schism of 1054) was the break of communion Communion may refer to: Religion * The Eucharist (also called the Holy Communion or Lord's Supper), the Christian rite involving the eatin ...
or the
Western Schism The Western Schism, also known as the Papal Schism, the Vatican Standoff, the Great Occidental Schism, or the Schism of 1378 (), was a split within the Catholic Church The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is ...
. It is also used of a split within a non-religious organization or movement or, more broadly, of a separation between two or more people, be it brothers, friends, lovers, etc. A schismatic is a person who creates or incites schism in an organization or who is a member of a splinter group. Schismatic as an adjective means pertaining to a schism or schisms, or to those ideas, policies, etc. that are thought to lead towards or promote schism. In religion, the charge of schism is distinguished from that of
heresy Heresy is any belief or theory that is strongly at variance with established beliefs or customs, in particular the accepted beliefs of a church or religious organization. The term is usually used in reference to violations of important religi ...
, since the offence of schism concerns not differences of belief or doctrine but promotion of, or the state of division, especially among groups with differing
pastor A pastor (abbreviated as "Pr" or "Ptr" , or "Ps" ) is the leader of a Christian Christians () are people who follow or adhere to Christianity, a monotheistic Abrahamic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus in Christianity, Jesus ...

pastor
al jurisdictions and authority. However, schisms frequently involve mutual accusations of heresy, and also that of the
Great Apostasy The Great Apostasy is a concept within Christianity, identifiable at least from the time of the Reformation, to describe a perception that the early apostolic Church has fallen away from the original faith founded by Jesus and promulgated thro ...
. In Roman Catholic teaching, every heresy is a schism, while there may be some schisms free of the added guilt of heresy.
Liberal Liberal or liberalism may refer to: Politics *a supporter of liberalism, a political and moral philosophy **Liberalism by country *an adherent of a Liberal Party Arts, entertainment and media *''El Liberal'', a Spanish newspaper published betw ...
Protestantism Protestantism is a form of Christianity that originated with the 16th-century Reformation, a movement against what its followers perceived to be Criticism of the Catholic Church, errors in the Catholic Church. Protestants originating in the Ref ...
, however, has often preferred heresy over schism.
Presbyterian Presbyterianism is a part of the Reformed tradition Calvinism (also called the Reformed tradition, Reformed Christianity, Reformed Protestantism, or the Reformed faith) is a major branch of Protestantism that follows the theological tr ...
scholar James I. McCord (quoted with approval by the
Episcopalian Anglicanism is a Western Christianity, Western Christian tradition that has developed from the practices, liturgy, and identity of the Church of England following the English Reformation. Adherents of Anglicanism are called ''Anglicans''; th ...
Bishop of Virginia, Peter Lee) drew a distinction between them, teaching: "If you must make a choice between heresy and schism, always choose heresy. As a schismatic, you have torn and divided the body of Christ. Choose heresy every time." ("Choose heresy" is a pun; "heresy" is a Latinization of an ancient Greek word for "choice".)


Etymology

The word ''schism'' comes from the Greek word σχίσμα which means "cleft, division".


Buddhism

In
Buddhism Buddhism (, ) is the world's fourth-largest religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether they are aware of it or not, and ...

Buddhism
, the first schism was set up by
Devadatta Devadatta was by tradition a Buddhist Buddhism (, ) is the world's fourth-largest religion Religion is a social system, social-cultural system of designated religious behaviour, behaviors and practices, morality, morals, belie ...
, during
Buddha Gautama Buddha, popularly known as the Buddha (also known as Siddhattha Gotama or Siddhārtha Gautama or Buddha Shakyamuni), was an Śramaṇa, ascetic, a religious leader and teacher who lived in History of India#Iron Age (1500 – 200 BC ...

Buddha
's life. This schism lasted only a short time. Later (after Buddha's death), the
early Buddhist schools The early Buddhist schools are those schools into which the Buddhist monasticism, monastic Sangha (Buddhism), saṅgha split early in the history of Buddhism. The divisions were originally due to differences in Vinaya and later also due to doctr ...
came into being, but were not schismatic, only focusing on different interpretations for the same monastic community. In the old texts, 18 or 20 early schools are mentioned. Later, there were the
Mahayana in Shishoin Temple (Tokyo). A unique feature of Mahāyāna is the belief that there are multiple Buddhas which are currently teaching the Dharma. Mahāyāna (; "Great Vehicle") is a term for a broad group of Buddhism, Buddhist traditions, text ...
and
Vajrayana Vajrayāna (Sanskrit: "thunderbolt vehicle" or "diamond vehicle") along with Mantrayāna, Guhyamantrayāna, Tantrayāna, Secret Mantra, Tantric Buddhism, and Esoteric Buddhism are names referring to Buddhist Buddhism (, ) is the Major ...
movements, which can be regarded as being schismatic in origin. Each school has various subgroups, which often are schismatic in origin. For example, in Thai Theravadin Buddhism there are two groups (
Mahanikaya The Mahā Nikāya (literal translation: "great Sangha, order") is one of the two principal monastic orders, or fraternities, of modern Thai and Cambodian Buddhism. The term is used to refer to any Theravada monks not within the Dhammayuttika Nikaya ...
and Dhammayut), of which the Dhammayut has its origin partly in the Mahanikaya, and is the new and schismatic group. Both Mahanikaya and Dhammayut have many subgroups, which usually do not have schismatic origins, but came into being in a natural way, through the popularity of a (leader)
monk A monk (, from el, μοναχός, ''monachos'', "single, solitary" via ''monachus'') is a person who practices religious by living, either alone or with any number of other monks. A monk may be a person who decides to dedicate his life ...
.
Tibetan Buddhism Tibetan Buddhism (also referred to as Indo-Tibetan Buddhism, Himalayan Buddhism, and Northern Buddhism) is the form of practiced in and , where it is the dominant religion. It also has adherents in the regions surrounding the (such as and ...
has seen schisms in the past, of which most were healed, although the Drukpa school centred in
Bhutan Bhutan (; dz, འབྲུག་ཡུལ་, Druk Yul, ), officially known as the Kingdom of Bhutan ( dz, འབྲུག་རྒྱལ་ཁབ་, Druk Gyal Khap), is a landlocked country in the Eastern Himalayas. It is bordered by Ch ...

Bhutan
perhaps remains in a state of schism (since 1616) from the other Tibetan schools.


Christianity

The words ''schism'' and ''schismatic'' have found their heaviest usage in the
history of Christianity The history of Christianity concerns the Christian religion Christianity is an Abrahamic The Abrahamic religions, also referred to collectively as the world of Abrahamism and Semitic religions, are a group of Semitic-originated religio ...
, to denote splits within a church, denomination or religious body. In this context, "schismatic", as a noun, denotes a person who creates or incites schism in a church or a person who is a member of a splinter Church; as an adjective, "schismatic" refers to ideas and activities that are thought to lead to or constitute schism, and ultimately to departure from what the user of the word considers to be the true Christian Church. These words have been used to denote both the phenomenon of Christian group-splintering in general, and certain significant historical splits in particular. One can make a distinction between
heresy Heresy is any belief or theory that is strongly at variance with established beliefs or customs, in particular the accepted beliefs of a church or religious organization. The term is usually used in reference to violations of important religi ...
and
schism A schism ( , , or, less commonly, ) is a division between people, usually belonging to an organization, movement, or religious denomination. The word is most frequently applied to a split in what had previously been a single religious body, s ...
. Heresy is rejection of a
doctrine Doctrine (from la, doctrina, meaning "teaching, instruction") is a codification Codification may refer to: *Codification (law), the process of preparing and enacting a legal code *Codification (linguistics), the process of selecting, developing ...

doctrine
that a Church considered to be essential. Schism is a rejection of
communion Communion may refer to: Religion * The Eucharist (also called the Holy Communion or Lord's Supper), the Christian rite involving the eating of bread and drinking of wine, reenacting the Last Supper **Communion (chant), the Gregorian chant that acc ...
with the authorities of a Church, and not every break of communion is necessarily about doctrine, as is clear from examples such as the
Western Schism The Western Schism, also known as the Papal Schism, the Vatican Standoff, the Great Occidental Schism, or the Schism of 1378 (), was a split within the Catholic Church The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is ...
and the breaking of the communion that existed between
Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople Bartholomew I ( el, Πατριάρχης Βαρθολομαῖος Αʹ, , tr, Patrik I. Bartholomeos; born 29 February 1940) is the 270th and current archbishop of Constantinople and ecumenical patriarch, since 2 November 1991. In accordance wi ...

Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople
and
Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens Christodoulos (17 January 1939 – 28 January 2008) ( el, Χριστόδουλος, born Christos Paraskevaidis, ''Χρήστος Παρασκευαΐδης'') was Archbishop of Athens and All Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officiall ...
in 2004. However, when for any reason people withdraw from communion, two distinct ecclesiastical entities may result, each of which, or at least some members thereof, may then accuse the other(s) of heresy. In
Roman Catholic Church The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with 1.3 billion baptised Baptism (from the Greek language, Greek noun βάπτισμα ''báptisma'') is a Christians, Christian ...

Roman Catholic Church
canon law Canon law (from grc, κανών, , a 'straight measuring rod, ruler A ruler, sometimes called a rule or line gauge, is a device used in geometry and technical drawing, as well as the engineering and construction industries, to measure dis ...
, an act of schism, like an act of
apostasy Apostasy (; grc-gre, ἀποστασία ''apostasía'', "a defection or revolt") is the formal religious disaffiliation, disaffiliation from, abandonment of, or renunciation of a religion by a person. It can also be defined within the broader ...
or
heresy Heresy is any belief or theory that is strongly at variance with established beliefs or customs, in particular the accepted beliefs of a church or religious organization. The term is usually used in reference to violations of important religi ...
, automatically brings the penalty of
excommunication Excommunication is an institutional act of religious censure A censure is an expression of strong disapproval or harsh criticism. In parliamentary procedure, it is a debatable main motion that could be adopted by a majority vote. Among the ...

excommunication
on the individual who commits it. As stated i
canon 1312 §1 1°
of the
1983 Code of Canon Law The 1983 Code of Canon Law (abbreviated 1983 CIC from its Latin title ''Codex Iuris Canonici''), also called the Johanno-Pauline Code, is the "fundamental body of ecclesiastical laws for the Latin Church". It is the second and current comprehens ...
, this penalty is intended to be medicinal, so as to lead to restoration of unity. Roman Catholic theology considers formal schismatics to be outside the Church, understanding by "formal schismatics" "persons who, knowing the true nature of the Church, have personally and deliberately committed the sin of schism".Aidan Nichols, ''Rome and the Eastern Churches'' (Liturgical Press 1992), p. 41
The situation, for instance, of those who have been brought up from childhood within a group not in full communion with
Rome , established_title = Founded , established_date = 753 BC , founder = King Romulus , image_map = Map of comune of Rome (metropolitan city of Capital Rome, region Lazio, Italy).svg , map_caption = The te ...
, but who have orthodox faith, is different: these are considered to be imperfectly, though not fully, related to the Church. This nuanced view applies especially to the Churches of
Eastern Christianity Eastern Christianity comprises Christianity, Christian traditions and Christian denomination, church families that originally developed during Classical antiquity, classical and late antiquity in Western Asia, Northeast Africa, Eastern Europe, ...
, more particularly still to the
Eastern Orthodox Church The Eastern Orthodox Church, also called the Orthodox Church, is the second-largest Christian church, with approximately 220 million baptised members. It operates as a communion Communion may refer to: Religion * The Eucharist (also cal ...
. While they don't possess "full communion" (communio in sacris) with the Catholic Church, they are still considered much more linked to it than the Protestant ecclesial communities, which have markedly different theological beliefs and rejected the concept of
apostolic succession Apostolic succession is the method whereby the of the is held to be derived from the by a continuous succession, which has usually been associated with a claim that the succession is through a series of s.F.L. Cross, E.A. Livingstone (editors) ...
(with the exception of the Anglicans, which, however, are viewed by the Catholic Church as not having a valid priesthood). The
First Council of Nicaea The First Council of Nicaea (; grc, Νίκαια ) was a council of Christian bishops convened in the Bithynia Bithynia (; Koine Greek Koine Greek (, , Greek approximately ;. , , , lit. "Common Greek"), also known as Alexandrian dialec ...
(A.D. 325) distinguished between schism and heresy. It declared
Arian Arianism is a Christological doctrine first attributed to Arius Arius (; grc-koi, Ἄρειος, ; 250 or 256–336) was a Cyrenaic The Cyrenaics or Kyrenaics ( grc, Κυρηναϊκοί; ''Kyrēnaïkoí'') were a sensual hedonist Greek ...
and non-
Trinitarian The Christian theology, Christian doctrine of the Trinity (, from "threefold") defines God in Christianity , God as being Monotheism, one god existing in three wikt:coequal , coequal, wikt:coeternal , coeternal, Consubstantiality , consubsta ...
teachings to be heretical and excluded their adherents from the Church. It also addressed the schism between Peter of Alexandria and
Meletius of Lycopolis Melitius or Meletius (died 327) was bishop of Lycopolis in Egypt. He is known mainly as the founder and namesake of the Melitians (c. 305), one of several schismatic sects in early church history which were concerned about the ease with which laps ...
, considering their quarrel to be a matter of discipline, not of faith. The divisions that came to a head at the Councils of
Ephesus Ephesus (; gr, Ἔφεσος, Éphesos; tr, Efes; may ultimately derive from hit, 𒀀𒉺𒊭, Apaša) was a city in ancient Greece Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, Hellás) was a civilization belonging to a period of History of Gree ...
(A.D. 431) and
Chalcedon Chalcedon ( or ; , sometimes transliterated Transliteration is a type of conversion of a text from one script Script may refer to: Writing systems * Script, a distinctive writing system, based on a repertoire of specific elements or ...
(A.D. 451) were seen as matters of heresy, not merely of schism. Thus the
Eastern Orthodox Church The Eastern Orthodox Church, also called the Orthodox Church, is the second-largest Christian church, with approximately 220 million baptised members. It operates as a communion Communion may refer to: Religion * The Eucharist (also cal ...
and
Oriental Orthodoxy The Oriental Orthodox Churches are a group of Eastern Christian Eastern Christianity comprises Christian Christians () are people who follow or adhere to Christianity, a monotheistic Abrahamic religion based on the life and teachings ...
regard each other as heretical, not orthodox, because of the Oriental Orthodox Church's rejection and the Eastern Orthodox Church's acceptance of the Confession of Chalcedon about the two natures (human and divine) of Christ. However, this view has been challenged in the recent Ecumenical discussion between these two groups, classifying the matter of Chalcedon as a matter of schism, not of heresy. In its extended and final form (possibly derived from the
First Council of Constantinople The First Council of Constantinople ( la, Concilium Constantinopolitanum; grc-gre, Σύνοδος τῆς Κωνσταντινουπόλεως) was a council of Christian bishops convened in Constantinople la, Constantinopolis ota, قس ...
in 381 although only known from the Acts of the
Council of Chalcedon The Council of Chalcedon (; la, Concilium Chalcedonense; grc-gre, Σύνοδος τῆς Χαλκηδόνος, ''Synodos tēs Chalkēdonos'') was the fourth ecumenical council The Council of Chalcedon (; la, Concilium Chalcedonense; ...
seventy years later), what is commonly called the
Nicene Creed The original Nicene Creed (; grc-gre, Σύμβολον τῆς Νικαίας; la, Symbolum Nicaenum) was first adopted at the First Council of Nicaea, which opened on 19 June 325.''Readings in the History of Christian Theology'' by William Ca ...
declares belief in the
One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church 1 (one, also called unit, and unity) is a number and a numerical digit used to represent that number in numeral system, numerals. It represents a single entity, the unit (measurement), unit of counting or measurement. For example, a line segment ...
. Some who accept this creed believe they should be united in a single Church or group of Churches in communion with each other. Others who accept this creed believe it does not speak of a visible organization but of all those baptized who hold the Christian faith, referred to as "
Christendom Christendom historically refers to the "Christian world": Christian state A Christian state is a country that recognizes a form of Christianity Christianity is an Abrahamic religions, Abrahamic Monotheism, monotheistic religion based on th ...
". Some churches consider themselves to be the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. For instance, the
Roman Catholic Church The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with 1.3 billion baptised Baptism (from the Greek language, Greek noun βάπτισμα ''báptisma'') is a Christians, Christian ...

Roman Catholic Church
claims that title and considers the
Eastern Orthodox Church The Eastern Orthodox Church, also called the Orthodox Church, is the second-largest Christian church, with approximately 220 million baptised members. It operates as a communion Communion may refer to: Religion * The Eucharist (also cal ...
to be in schism, while the Eastern Orthodox Church also claims that title and holds the view that the Catholic Church is schismatic. Some
Protestant Protestantism is a form of that originated with the 16th-century , a movement against what its followers perceived to be in the . Protestants originating in the Reformation reject the Roman Catholic doctrine of , but disagree among themselves ...
Churches believe that they also represent the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church and consider the Catholic and Orthodox Churches to be in error, while others do not expect a union of all Christian churches on earth. See also
One true church The expression "one true church" refers to an ecclesiological In Christian theology, ecclesiology is the study of the Church (congregation), Church, the origins of Christianity, its relationship to Jesus, its role in salvation, its ecclesiastica ...
and
Great Apostasy The Great Apostasy is a concept within Christianity, identifiable at least from the time of the Reformation, to describe a perception that the early apostolic Church has fallen away from the original faith founded by Jesus and promulgated thro ...
. Protestant groups, lacking the stronger traditional authority-structures of (say) Roman Catholicism or Eastern Orthodoxy, and often riven by politico-national divides (sometimes resulting from
cuius regio, eius religio () is a Latin phrase __NOTOC__ This is a list of Wikipedia articles of Latin phrases and their translation into English. To view all phrases on a single, lengthy document, see: * List of Latin phrases (full) The list also is divided alphabetic ...
), show a high degree of fissibility, which ecumenical efforts may only intensify. Schisms have occurred particularly frequently among
Anabaptists Anabaptism (from Neo-Latin , from the Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. It ...
, to the extent that divisions over even minute details of doctrine and theology are common and scholars have dubbed the phenomenon ''Täuferkrankheit'' or "The Anabaptist Disease". Emphasizing fully voluntary membership in the church, and without an established authority of hierarchical structure, Anabaptists, especially
Mennonites Mennonites are members of certain Christian Christians () are people who follow or adhere to Christianity, a monotheistic Abrahamic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus in Christianity, Jesus Christ. The words ''Christ (title), ...
have experienced dozens of schisms, resulting in the establishment of dozens of various unaffiliated Mennonite churches. A current dispute with an acknowledged risk of schism for the
Anglican Communion The Anglican Communion is the third largest Christian communion Communion may refer to: Religion * The Eucharist (also called the Holy Communion or Lord's Supper), the Christian rite involving the eating of bread and drinking of wine, re ...
involves responses to homosexuality. In 2018
Eastern Orthodoxy The Eastern Orthodox Church, also called the Orthodox Church, is the List of Christian denominations by number of members, second-largest Christian church, with approximately 220 million baptised members. It operates as a Communion (Christ ...
suffered a schism, the 2018 Moscow-Constantinople schism between the primatial See of Eastern Orthodoxy, the
Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople The Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople ( el, Οἰκουμενικὸν Πατριαρχεῖον Κωνσταντινουπόλεως, translit=Oikoumenikón Patriarkhíon Konstantinoupóleos, ; la, Patriarchatus Oecumenicus Constanti ...
and the
Russian Orthodox Church , native_name_lang = ru , image = Moscow July 2011-7a.jpg , imagewidth = , alt = , caption = Cathedral of Christ the Saviour The Cathedral of Christ the Saviour ( rus, Храм Хр ...

Russian Orthodox Church
over the issue of Constantinople granting
autocephaly Autocephaly (; from el, αὐτοκεφαλία, meaning "property of being self-headed") is the status of a hierarchy, hierarchical Christian church whose head bishop does not report to any higher-ranking bishop. The term is primarily used i ...
to the
Orthodox Church of Ukraine The Orthodox Church of Ukraine ( uk, Православна церква України, Pravoslavna tserkva Ukrainy) (OCU) is a partially recognized Autocephaly, autocephalous Eastern Orthodox church whose canonical territory is Ukraine. ...

Orthodox Church of Ukraine
.


Islam

After the death of the Islamic prophet
Muhammad Muhammad ibn AbdullahHe is referred to by many appellations, including Messenger of Allah, The Prophet Muhammad, Allah's Apostle, Last Prophet of Islam, and others; there are also many variant spellings of Muhammad, such as Mohamet, Mohammed, ...

Muhammad
, there have arisen many
Muslim sects A sect is a subgroup of a religious Religion is a social system, social-cultural system of designated religious behaviour, behaviors and practices, morality, morals, beliefs, worldviews, religious text, texts, shrine, sanctified places, pr ...
by means of
schools of thought A school of thought, or intellectual tradition, is the perspective of a group of people who share common characteristics of opinion or outlook of a philosophy, List of academic disciplines, discipline, belief, social movement, Schools of economic ...
, traditions and related faiths. According to a
hadith Ḥadīth ( or ; ar, حديث , pl. aḥādīth, , , , literally means "talk" or "discourse") or Athar ( ar, أثر, , literally means "tradition") in Islam refers to what the majority of Muslims Muslims () are people who follow or ...

hadith
report (collections of accounts of the life and teachings of Muhammad), Muhammad is said to have
prophesied A prophecy is a message that is claimed by a prophet to have been communicated to them by a deity. Such messages typically involve inspiration, interpretation, or revelation of divine will concerning the prophet's social world and events to come (c ...
"My
Ummah ' ( ar, أمة ) is an Arabic Arabic (, ' or , ' or ) is a Semitic language The Semitic languages are a branch of the Afroasiatic language family originating in the Middle East The Middle East is a list of transcontinental c ...
(
Community A community is a social unit The term "level of analysis" is used in the social sciences to point to the location, size, or scale of a research target. "Level of analysis" is distinct from the term "unit of observation" in that the former refer ...

Community
or
Nation A nation is a community A community is a social unit (a group of living things) with commonality such as Norm (social), norms, religion, values, Convention (norm), customs, or Identity (social science), identity. Communities may share a sense ...

Nation
) will be fragmented into seventy-three sects, and all of them will be in the
Hell In religion Religion is a - of designated and practices, , s, s, , , , , or , that relates humanity to , , and elements; however, there is no scholarly consensus over what precisely constitutes a religion. Different religions may o ...
fire except one." The
Sahaba Companions of the Prophet ( ar, اَلصَّحَابَةُ; ''aṣ-ṣaḥāba'' meaning "the companions", from the verb meaning "accompany", "keep company with", "associate with") were the disciples and followers of Muhammad Muhammad ibn ...

Sahaba
(his companions) asked him which group that would be, whereupon he replied, "It is the one to which I and my companions belong" (reported in
Sunan al-Tirmidhi Sunan may refer to: *Hadith collections in Islam: ** Sunan Abi Da'ud **Sunan al-Tirmidhi Sunan may refer to: *Hadith collections in Islam: ** Sunan Abi Da'ud **Sunan al-Tirmidhi Jami at-Tirmidhi ( ar, جامع الترمذي), also known as Suna ...
Hadith No. 171).
Sunni Muslims Sunni Islam () is by far the largest Islamic schools and branches, branch of Islam, followed by 85–90% of the world's Muslims. Its name comes from the word ''Sunnah'', referring to the behaviour of Muhammad. The differences between Sunni and ...
, often referred to as ''Ahl as-Sunnah wa’l-Jamā‘h'' or ''Ahl as-Sunnah'', are the largest
denomination Denomination may refer to: * Religious denomination, such as a: ** Christian denomination ** Jewish denomination ** Islamic denomination ** Hindu denominations ** Schools of Buddhism, Buddhist denomination * Denomination (currency) * Denomination ( ...
of
Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", "ah gawd"; see interjection An interjection is a word or ex ...
. The word ''Sunni'' comes from the word ''
Sunnah In Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", "ah gawd"; see interjection An interjection i ...
'', which means the teachings and actions or examples of the
Islamic prophet Prophets in Islam ( ar, الأنبياء في الإسلام, translit=al-ʾAnbiyāʾ fī al-ʾIslām) are individuals in Islam who are believed to spread God In monotheism, monotheistic thought, God is conceived of as the supreme being, c ...
,
Muhammad Muhammad ibn AbdullahHe is referred to by many appellations, including Messenger of Allah, The Prophet Muhammad, Allah's Apostle, Last Prophet of Islam, and others; there are also many variant spellings of Muhammad, such as Mohamet, Mohammed, ...

Muhammad
; therefore, the term Sunni refers to those who follow or maintain the Sunnah of Muhammad. The Sunni believe that Muhammad died without appointing a successor to lead the
Ummah ' ( ar, أمة ) is an Arabic Arabic (, ' or , ' or ) is a Semitic language The Semitic languages are a branch of the Afroasiatic language family originating in the Middle East The Middle East is a list of transcontinental c ...
(Muslim community). After an initial period of confusion, a group of his most prominent companions gathered and elected
Abu Bakr Abu Bakr Abdullah ibn Uthman ( ar, أَبُو بَكْرٍ عَبْدُ ٱللهِ بْنِ عُثْمَانَ; 573 CE23 August 634 CE) was a Sahabah, companion and, through his daughter Aisha, a father-in-law of the Prophets and messengers in I ...
, Muhammad's close friend and father-in-law, as the first
Caliph A caliphate ( ar, خِلَافَة, ) is an Islamic state {{Infobox war faction , name = Islamic State , anthem = '' Dawlat al-Islam Qamat'' {{small, ("My Ummah ' ( ar, أمة ) is an Arabic Arabic (, ' ...
. Sunnis regard the first four caliphs -
Abu Bakr Abu Bakr Abdullah ibn Uthman ( ar, أَبُو بَكْرٍ عَبْدُ ٱللهِ بْنِ عُثْمَانَ; 573 CE23 August 634 CE) was a Sahabah, companion and, through his daughter Aisha, a father-in-law of the Prophets and messengers in I ...
,
Umar ʿUmar ibn al-Khaṭṭāb ( ar, عمر بن الخطاب; 3 November 644), also spelled Omar, was the second Rashidun, Rashidun caliph, reigning from 634 until his assassination in 644. He succeeded Abu Bakr (632–634) as the second caliph ...

Umar
(`Umar ibn al-Khattāb),
Uthman Ibn Affan Uthman ibn Affan ( ar, عثمان بن عفان, ʿUthmān ibn ʿAffān; – 17 June 656), also spelled by the Turkish and Persian rendering Osman, was the third Rashidun , image = تخطيط كلمة الخلفاء الراشدون.pn ...
, and
Ali Ali ibn Abi Talib ( ar, عَلِيّ ٱبْن أَبِي طَالِب, ; 13 September 601 – 29 January 661) was a cousin, son-in-law and companion of the Prophets and messengers in Islam, Islamic prophet Muhammad in Islam, Muhammad, who ru ...

Ali
(Ali ibn Abu Talib) - as the ''al-Khulafā’ur-Rāshidūn'' or "
Rashidun , image = تخطيط كلمة الخلفاء الراشدون.png , caption = Calligraphic Calligraphy (from Greek language, Greek: καλλιγραφία) is a Visual arts, visual art related to writing. It is the design and execut ...
" (The Rightly Guided Caliphs). Sunnis believe that the position of Caliph may be democratically chosen, but after the first four Rightly Guided Caliphs the position turned into a hereditary
dynastic A dynasty (, ) is a sequence of rulers from the same family In human society, family (from la, familia) is a group of people related either by consanguinity (by recognized birth) or affinity (by marriage or other relationship). Th ...
rule. There has not been another widely recognized Caliph since the fall of the
Ottoman Empire The Ottoman Empire (; ', ; or '; )info page on bookat Martin Luther University) // CITED: p. 36 (PDF p. 38/338). was an empire that controlled much of Southeastern Europe, Western Asia, and North Africa, Northern Africa between the 14th ...
in 1923.
Shia Islam Shia Islam or Shi'ism is the second largest branch A branch ( or , ) or tree branch (sometimes referred to in botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science of plant life and a branch of biology. A botanis ...
is the second largest
denomination Denomination may refer to: * Religious denomination, such as a: ** Christian denomination ** Jewish denomination ** Islamic denomination ** Hindu denominations ** Schools of Buddhism, Buddhist denomination * Denomination (currency) * Denomination ( ...
of
Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", "ah gawd"; see interjection An interjection is a word or ex ...
. Shia Muslims believe that, similar to the appointment of prophets,
Imam Imam (; ar, إمام '; plural: ') is an Islamic leadership position. For Sunni Islam, Sunni Muslims, Imam is most commonly used as the title of a worship leader of a mosque. In this context, imams may lead Salah, Islamic worship services, ...
s after Muhammad are also chosen by God. According to Shias,
Ali Ali ibn Abi Talib ( ar, عَلِيّ ٱبْن أَبِي طَالِب, ; 13 September 601 – 29 January 661) was a cousin, son-in-law and companion of the Prophets and messengers in Islam, Islamic prophet Muhammad in Islam, Muhammad, who ru ...

Ali
was chosen by Allah and thus appointed by Muhammad to be the direct successor and leader of the Muslim community. They regard him as the first
Shia Imam In Shia Islam Shia Islam or Shi'ism is one of the two main Islamic schools and branches, branches of Islam. It holds that the Prophets and messengers in Islam, Islamic prophet Muhammad in Islam, Muhammad designated Ali, Ali ibn Abi Talib ...
, which continued as a hereditary position through
Fatimah Fatimah bint Muhammad ( ar, فَاطِمَة ٱبْنَت مُحَمَّد, Fāṭimah bint Muḥammad, ; 605 CE/15 BH – died 28 August 632), commonly known as Fatimah al-Zahra ( ar, فَاطِمَة ٱلزَّهْرَاء, Fāṭimah al- ...

Fatimah
and Ali's descendants.
Sufism Sufism ( ar, ٱلصُّوفِيَّة), also known as Tasawwuf (), is in , "characterized ... y particularvalues, ritual practices, doctrines and institutions". It is variously defined as "Islamic mysticism",Martin Lings, ''What is Sufism? ...

Sufism
is a
mystical Mysticism is popularly known as becoming one with God or the Absolute, but may refer to any kind of ecstasy Ecstasy may refer to: * Ecstasy (emotion), a trance or trance-like state in which a person transcends normal consciousness * Religious e ...
-
ascetic Asceticism (; from the el, ἄσκησις ''áskesis'', "exercise, training") is a lifestyle characterized by abstinence from sensual pleasures, often for the purpose of pursuing spiritual goals. Ascetics may withdraw from the world for their ...
form of Islam practised by both Shia and Sunni Muslims. Some Sufi followers consider themselves Sunni or Shia, while others consider themselves as just Sufi or Sufi-influenced. Sufism is usually considered to be complementary to orthodox Islam, although Sufism has often been accused by the
salafi The Salafi movement, also called the Salafist movement, ''Salafiyyah'' and Salafism, is a reform Reform ( lat, reformo) means the improvement or amendment of what is wrong, corrupt, unsatisfactory, etc. The use of the word in this way emerges ...
of being an unjustified '' Bid‘ah'' or religious innovation. By focusing on the more spiritual aspects of religion, Sufis strive to obtain direct experience of God by making use of "intuitive and emotional faculties" that one must be trained to use. One starts with
sharia Sharia (; ar, شريعة, sharīʿa ) is a religious law Religious law includes ethical Ethics or moral philosophy is a branch of philosophy that "involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and wrong action ...
(Islamic law), the
exoteric Exoteric refers to knowledge that is outside and independent from a person's experience and can be ascertained by anyone (related to common sense Common sense is sound, practical judgment concerning everyday matters, or a basic ability to per ...
or mundane practice of Islam, and then is initiated into the mystical (
esoteric Western esotericism, also known as esotericism, esoterism, and sometimes the Western mystery tradition, is a term scholars use to categorise a wide range of loosely related ideas and movements that developed within Western society. These ideas a ...
) path of a
Tariqah A tariqa (or ''tariqah''; ar, طريقة ') is a school or order of Sufism Sufism ( ar, ٱلصُّوفِيَّة), also known as Tasawwuf (), is mysticism Mysticism is popularly known as becoming one with God or the Absolute, but may ...
(Sufi Order).
Kharijite The Kharijites ( ar, الخوارج, ''al-Khawārij'', singular , ''khāriji''), also called the al-Shurat (Arabic: الشراة, ''al-Shurāt''), were an Islamic sect that appeared in the first century of Islam during the First Muslim Civil Wa ...
(lit. "those who seceded") is a general term embracing a variety of Islamic sects which, while originally supporting the Caliphate of
Ali Ali ibn Abi Talib ( ar, عَلِيّ ٱبْن أَبِي طَالِب, ; 13 September 601 – 29 January 661) was a cousin, son-in-law and companion of the Prophets and messengers in Islam, Islamic prophet Muhammad in Islam, Muhammad, who ru ...

Ali
, eventually rejected his legitimacy after he negotiated with
Mu'awiya Muawiyah I ( ar, معاوية بن أبي سفيان, Muʿāwiya ibn Abī Sufyān; –April 680) was the founder and first caliph of the Umayyad Caliphate and fifth Caliph of Islam Islam (;There are ten pronunciations of ''Islam'' in En ...
during the 7th Century Islamic civil war (
First Fitna The First Fitna ( ar, فتنة مقتل عثمان, fitnat maqtal ʻUthmān, strife/sedition of the killing of Uthman Uthman ibn Affan ( ar, عثمان بن عفان, ʿUthmān ibn ʿAffān; – 17 June 656), also spelled by the Turkish and ...
). Their complaint was that the Imam must be spiritually pure, whereas Ali's compromise with Mu'awiya was a compromise of his spiritual purity and therefore of his legitimacy as Imam or Caliph. While there are few remaining Kharijite or Kharijite-related groups, the term is sometimes used to denote Muslims who refuse to compromise with those with whom they disagree.


Jainism

The first schism in Jainism happened around the fourth century BCE, leading to rise of two major sects,
Digambara ''Digambara'' (; "sky-clad") is one of the two major schools of Jainism, the other being ''Śvētāmbara The "Śvētāmbara" or ''Shwethambara (''; ''śvētapaṭa''; also spelled ''Svetambar'', ''Shvetambara'' or ''Swetambar'') is one of ...

Digambara
and Svetambara, which were later subdivided in further sub-sects.


Judaism

Throughout
Jewish history Jewish history is the history of the Jews, and their nation, Judaism, religion and Jewish culture, culture, as it developed and interacted with other peoples, religions and cultures. Although Judaism as a religion first appears in Greek records d ...
,
Judaism Judaism is an Abrahamic religions, Abrahamic, monotheism, monotheistic, and ethnic religion comprising the collective religious, cultural, and legal tradition and civilization of the Jewish people. It has its roots as an organized religion ...
survived many schisms, including the emergence of
Christianity Christianity is an Abrahamic The Abrahamic religions, also referred to collectively as the world of Abrahamism and Semitic religions, are a group of Semitic-originated religion Religion is a social system, social-cultural system of ...

Christianity
. Today, major
Jewish denominations Jewish religious movements, sometimes called "Religious denomination, denominations", include different groups which have developed among Jews from ancient times. Today, the main division is between the "traditional" branches of Judaism (Orthodox ...
are
Orthodox Judaism Orthodox Judaism is the collective term for the traditionalist branches of contemporary Judaism Judaism is an Abrahamic religions, Abrahamic, monotheism, monotheistic, and ethnic religion comprising the collective religious, cultural, ...
and non-Orthodox:
Reform Reform ( lat, reformo) means the improvement or amendment of what is wrong, corrupt, unsatisfactory, etc. The use of the word in this way emerges in the late 18th century and is believed to originate from Christopher Wyvill's Association movement ...
,
Conservative Conservatism is an aesthetic Aesthetics, or esthetics (), is a branch of philosophy that deals with the nature of beauty and taste (sociology), taste, as well as the philosophy of art (its own area of philosophy that comes out of aest ...
and Reconstructionist. The Jewish and
Samaritan Samaritans (; ; he, שומרונים, translit=Shomronim; ar, السامريون, translit=as-Sāmiriyyūn) or Samaritan people are members of an ethnoreligious group originating from the Israelites of historical History of ancient Israel a ...

Samaritan
religions are the product of the schism of one religion which occurred during the
Babylonian Exile The Babylonian captivity or Babylonian exile is the period in Jewish history during which a number of people from the ancient Kingdom of Judah were captives in Babylon, the capital of the Neo-Babylonian Empire. After the Battle of Carchemish in ...
in the sixth century BCE.


Examples


Jewish

*
Samaritanism The Samaritan religion, also known as Samaritanism, is an Abrahamic The Abrahamic religions, also referred to collectively as the world of Abrahamism and Semitic religions, are a group of Semitic-originated religion Religion is a so ...
, 586 BCE *
Christianity Christianity is an Abrahamic The Abrahamic religions, also referred to collectively as the world of Abrahamism and Semitic religions, are a group of Semitic-originated religion Religion is a social system, social-cultural system of ...

Christianity
, c. 1st century AD *
Reform Judaism Reform Judaism (also known as Liberal Judaism or Progressive Judaism) is a major Jewish religious movements, Jewish denomination that emphasizes the evolving nature of the faith, the superiority of its Jewish ethics, ethical aspects to its cerem ...
, 1810 *
Conservative Judaism Conservative Judaism (known as Masorti Judaism outside North America North America is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict ...
, 1886


Islamic

*The schism of the Shia and Sunni, c. 632/680s *The schism of the
Kharijites The Kharijites ( ar, الخوارج, ''al-Khawārij'', singular , ''khāriji''), also called the al-Shurat (Arabic: الشراة, ''al-Shurāt''), were an Islamic sect that appeared in the first century of Islam during the First Muslim Civil W ...
, late 7th century *The schism of the Mu'tazilites, 8th century *The schism of the
Mihna The Mihna ( ar, محنة خلق القرآن, ''Miḥnat Ḵẖalaq al-Qurʾān'' "ordeal egardingthe createdness of the Qur'an") refers to the period of religious persecution Religious persecution is the systematic mistreatment of an ind ...
, c. 833 *The schism of
Zikri Mahdavia ( ar, مهدوي ''mahdawi'') or Mahdavism, known as Zikri in Pakistan, is an Islamic movement founded by Syed Muhammad Jaunpuri in India in the late 15th century. Syed Muhammad claimed to be Imam Mahdi at the holy city of Mecca, in ...
, c. 1500 *The schism of
Ahmadiyya Ahmadiyya (, ), officially the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community or the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama'at ( ar, الجماعة الإسلامية الأحمدية, al-Jamāʿah al-Islāmīyah al-Aḥmadīyah; ur, , translit=Jamā'at Aḥmadiyyah Muslimah) ...

Ahmadiyya
, 19th century *The
Moorish Science Temple of America The Moorish Science Temple of America is an American national and religious organization founded by Noble Drew Ali Timothy Drew, better known as Noble Drew Ali (January 8, 1886 – July 20, 1929), was an American who founded the Moorish Sc ...
, c. 1913 *The
Nation of Islam The Nation of Islam (NOI) is a religious and political organization which was founded in the United States by Wallace Fard Muhammad in 1930. A Black nationalism, black nationalist organization, the NOI focuses its attention on the African dia ...
, c. 1930 *The United Submitters International, c. mid-20th century


Christian

*
Paul the Apostle Paul; el, Παῦλος, translit=Paulos; cop, ⲡⲁⲩⲗⲟⲥ; he, פאולוס השליח, name=, group= (born Saul of Tarsus;; ar, بولس الطرسوسي; el, Σαῦλος Ταρσεύς, Saũlos Tarseús; tr, Tarsuslu Pavlus AD ...
refers to factions or schisms ( gr, σχισματα, ''schismata'') within the church at
Corinth Corinth ( ; el, Κόρινθος, Kórinthos, ) is the successor to an ancient city, and is a former municipality A municipality is usually a single administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). ...

Corinth
*The schism of
Marcionism Marcionism was an Early Christianity, early Christian Dualistic cosmology, dualistic belief system that originated from the teachings of Marcion of Sinope in Rome around the year 144. Marcion was an Diversity in early Christian theology, early Ch ...
, c.150 *The schism of
Gnosticism Gnosticism (from grc, γνωστικός, gnōstikós, , 'having knowledge') is a collection of religious ideas and systems which coalesced in the late 1st century AD among Judaism, Jewish and Early Christianity, early Christian sects. These ...
, which some attribute to
Valentinius Valentinus (also spelled Valentinius;  – ) was the best known and, for a time, most successful early Christian The history of Christianity concerns the Christianity, Christian religion, Christendom, Christian countries, and the Christi ...
, c. 150, others much earlier *The schism of
Montanism Montanism (), known by its adherents as the New Prophecy, was an early Christian movement of the late 2nd century, later referred to by the name of its founder, Montanus. Montanism held views about the basic tenets of Christian theology #RED ...
*The schism of
Monarchianism Monarchianism is a Christian theology that emphasizes God as one indivisible being,
at Catholic Encyclopedia, newadvent.org
i ...
, c. 200 *The many
Antipope An antipope ( la, antipapa) is a person who, in opposition to the lawful pope, makes a significant attempt to occupy the position of Diocese of Rome, Bishop of Rome and leader of the Catholic Church. At times between the 3rd and mid-15th centuri ...
s, beginning with
Hippolytus of Rome Hippolytus of Rome (c. 170 – c. 235 AD) was one of the most important second-third century Christian theologians, whose provenance, identity and corpus remain elusive to scholars and historians. Suggested communities include Palestine, Egypt, A ...
in 217, although Hippolytus later reconciled. *The
Donatist Image:Augustine and donatists.jpg, alt=Painting of Augustine of Hippo arguing with a man before an audience, Charles-André van Loo's 18th-century ''Augustine arguing with Donatists'' Donatism was a Christian sect leading to schism in the Catholic ...
schism, beginning in 311 *The schism with
Arianism Arianism is a Christology, Christological doctrine first attributed to Arius (), a Christian presbyter in Alexandria, Alexandria, Egypt. Arian theology holds that the Son of God is not co-eternal with God the Father and is distinct from th ...
and
Quartodecimanism Quartodecimanism (from the Vulgate The Vulgate (; , ) is a late-4th-century Latin translation of the Bible The Bible (from Koine Greek τὰ βιβλία, ''tà biblía'', "the books") is a collection of religious texts or scriptures sa ...
at the
First Council of Nicaea The First Council of Nicaea (; grc, Νίκαια ) was a council of Christian bishops convened in the Bithynia Bithynia (; Koine Greek Koine Greek (, , Greek approximately ;. , , , lit. "Common Greek"), also known as Alexandrian dialec ...
, 325 *The
Nestorian Schism The Nestorian Schism (431), in church history, involved a split between the Christian churches of Sassanid Persia, which affiliated with Nestorius, and churches that rejected him. The schism rose out of a Christological dispute, notably involvi ...
, after the
Council of Ephesus The Council of Ephesus was a council of Christian bishops convened in Ephesus (near present-day Selçuk in Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southeastern Europe and Western ...
in 431, between the
State church of the Roman Empire The state church of the Roman Empire refers to the church approved by the Roman emperors after Theodosius I issued the Edict of Thessalonica in 380, which recognized the catholic orthodoxy of Nicene Christians in the Great Church as the Roman Empi ...
and
Nestorianism Nestorianism is a polysemic Polysemy ( or ; from grc-gre, πολύ-, , "many" and , , "sign") is the capacity for a word or phrase to have multiple meanings, usually related by contiguity of meaning within a semantic field. Polysemy is thus ...

Nestorianism
*The
Oriental Orthodox The Oriental Orthodox Churches are a group of Eastern Christian Eastern Christianity comprises Christian Christians () are people who follow or adhere to Christianity, a monotheistic Abrahamic religion based on the life and teachings ...
schism and rejection of the
Council of Chalcedon The Council of Chalcedon (; la, Concilium Chalcedonense; grc-gre, Σύνοδος τῆς Χαλκηδόνος, ''Synodos tēs Chalkēdonos'') was the fourth ecumenical council The Council of Chalcedon (; la, Concilium Chalcedonense; ...
, c. 451 *The Acacian schism, 484-519 *The schism of the
Armenian Orthodox , native_name_lang = hy , icon = Armenian Apostolic Church logo.png , icon_width = 100px , icon_alt = , image = Էջմիածնի_Մայր_Տաճար.jpg , imagewidth = 250px , al ...
, between Patriarchate of Constantinople and Armenian native speaking Eastern Christians which formed the Armenian Apostolic Church, 491-554 *The
Great Schism Great Schism may refer to: * East–West Schism, between the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Catholic Church, beginning in 1054 * Western Schism, a split within the Roman Catholic Church that lasted from 1378 to 1417 See also

* Schism, a divis ...
of 1054 that led the split to
Latin Rite Latin liturgical rites, or Western liturgical rites, are Catholic rites of public worship employed by the Latin Church , native_name_lang = la , image = San Giovanni in Laterano - Rome.jpg , imagewidth = 250px , ...
Roman Catholicism The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with 1.3 billion baptised Baptism (from the Greek language, Greek noun βάπτισμα ''báptisma'') is a Christians, Christian r ...
and
Byzantine Rite The Byzantine Rite, also known as the Greek Rite or the Rite of Constantinople, identifies the wide range of cultural, liturgical, and canonical practices that developed in the Eastern Orthodox Church of Constantinople. The canonical hours are v ...
Eastern Orthodoxy The Eastern Orthodox Church, also called the Orthodox Church, is the List of Christian denominations by number of members, second-largest Christian church, with approximately 220 million baptised members. It operates as a Communion (Christ ...
*
Bosnian Church The Bosnian Church ( sh, Crkva bosanska/Црква босанска) was a Christian church Christian Church is a Protestant Protestantism is a form of Christianity that originated with the 16th-century Reformation, a movement against what ...
cca. 1100 to cca. 1500 *
Lollardy Lollardy, also known as Lollardism or the Lollard movement, was a Proto-Protestant Christian religious movement that existed from the mid-14th century until the 16th-century English Reformation The English Reformation took place in 16th-c ...
in the 1350s *Three Papal claimants at the same time: ,
Avignon Pope Benedict XIII Pedro Martínez de Luna y Pérez de Gotor (25 November 1328 – 23 May 1423), known as in Spanish and in English, was an Aragon Aragon ( or , Spanish and an, Aragón , ca, Aragó ) is an autonomous community in Spain , * gl, Re ...
, , resolved at
Council of Constance The Council of Constance was a 15th-century ecumenical council An ecumenical council (or oecumenical council; also general council) is a conference of ecclesiastical dignitaries and theological experts convened to discuss and settle matte ...
, see also
Western Schism The Western Schism, also known as the Papal Schism, the Vatican Standoff, the Great Occidental Schism, or the Schism of 1378 (), was a split within the Catholic Church The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is ...
, 1378–1417 *The
Swiss Reformation File:Eidtgenoschafft 1550.jpg, Map of the Swiss Confederacy by Sebastian Münster () The Protestant Reformation in Switzerland was promoted initially by Huldrych Zwingli, who gained the support of the magistrate (Mark Reust) and population of Z ...
beginning in 1516 *The
Reformation The Reformation (alternatively named the Protestant Reformation or the European Reformation) was a major movement within Western Christianity in Vatican City Vatican City (), officially the Vatican City State ( it, Stato della Cit ...

Reformation
beginning in 1517 *
Anabaptist Anabaptism (from New Latin language, Neo-Latin , from the Greek language, Greek : "re-" and "baptism", german: Täufer, earlier also )Since the middle of the 20th century, the German-speaking world no longer uses the term (translation: "Re-ba ...
, c. 1525 *The
English Reformation The English Reformation took place in 16th-century England when the Church of England broke away from the authority of the Pope and the Roman Catholic Church. These events were, in part, associated with the wider European Protestant Reformati ...
beginning in 1529 *
Michael Servetus Michael Servetus (; es, Miguel Serveto as real name; french: Michel Servet; also known as ''Miguel Servet'', ''Miguel de Villanueva'', ''Revés'', or ''Michel de Villeneuve''; 29 September 1509 or 1511 – 27 October 1553) was a Spanish the ...

Michael Servetus
burned at the stake Death by burning (also known as immolation) is an list of execution methods, execution method involving combustion or exposure to extreme heat. It has a long history as a form of public capital punishment, and many societies have employed it as ...
in 1553, considered founder of
Unitarianism Unitarianism (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Republ ...
*The
Scottish Reformation The Scottish Reformation was the process by which Scotland Scotland ( sco, Scotland, gd, Alba ) is a Countries of the United Kingdom, country that is part of the United Kingdom. Covering the northern third of the island of Great Britain, ...

Scottish Reformation
in 1560 *The in 1571 *
Socinianism Socinianism () is a system of Christianity, Christian doctrine named after Italians Lelio Sozzini (Latin: Laelius Socinus) and Fausto Sozzini (Latin: Faustus Socinus), uncle and nephew, respectively, which was developed among the Polish Brethren in ...
in 1605 *The
Jansenism Jansenism was a theology, theological movement within Catholicism, primarily active in France, that emphasized original sin, human Total depravity, depravity, the necessity of divine grace and predestination. The movement originated from the post ...
schism of 1643 * See
Old Believers Old Believers or Old Ritualists, ''starovery'' or ''staroobryadtsy'' are Eastern Orthodox Christians who maintain the Liturgy, liturgical and ritual practices of the Russian Orthodox Church as they were before the reforms of Patriarch Nikon of M ...
and
Raskol Raskol (russian: раскол, , meaning "split" or "schism") was the splitting of the Russian Orthodox Church into an official church and the Old Believers movement in the mid-17th century. It was triggered by the reforms of Patriarch Nikon i ...
for schism within the
Russian Orthodox Church , native_name_lang = ru , image = Moscow July 2011-7a.jpg , imagewidth = , alt = , caption = Cathedral of Christ the Saviour The Cathedral of Christ the Saviour ( rus, Храм Хр ...

Russian Orthodox Church
in 1666 over ritual and liturgical changes *The
Old School–New School Controversy The Old School–New School Controversy was a Schism (religion), schism of the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America which took place in 1837 and lasted for over 20 years. The Old School, led by Charles Hodge of Princeton Theological ...
in the
Presbyterian Church in the United States of America Presbyterianism is a part of the Reformed tradition within Protestantism that traces its origin to the Church of Scotland. Presbyterian churches derive their name from the presbyterian polity, presbyterian form of ecclesiastical polity, churc ...
in 1837 *
Disruption of 1843 The Disruption of 1843, also known as the Great Disruption was a schism or division within the State religion, established Church of Scotland, in which 450 evangelical ministers of the church broke away, over whether the church or the state is the ...
*
Restorationism Restorationism (or Christian primitivism) is the belief that Christianity has been or should be restored along the lines of what is known about the Apostolic Age, apostolic early church, which restorationists see as the search for a purer and mo ...
beginning in the 1850s in the
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., ...

United States
*
Christian Catholic Church of Switzerland upChristian Catholic bishop's church, Ss Peter and Paul in Bern The Christ Catholic Church is the Old Catholic Church in Switzerland. With about 9,184 members nationwide, the Christ Catholic Church has the official status of a national church i ...
rejects
First Vatican Council The First Vatican Council ( la, Concilium Vaticanum Primum) was convoked by Pope Pius IX on 29 June 1868, after a period of planning and preparation that began on 6 December 1864. This, the twentieth ecumenical council of the Catholic Church, he ...
doctrine of
Papal infallibility Papal infallibility is a dogma of the Catholic Church The Catholic Church, often referred to as the Roman Catholic Church, is the List of Christian denominations by number of members, largest Christian church, with approximately 1.3  ...
, see also
Old Catholic Church The term Old Catholic Church is used from the 1850s by communions which had separated from the Roman Catholic Church The Catholic Church, often referred to as the Roman Catholic Church, is the List of Christian denominations by number ...
, 1868 *The Crotty Schism in
Birr, County Offaly Birr (; ga, Biorra, meaning "plain of water") is a town in County Offaly, Ireland. Between 1620 and 1899 it was called Parsonstown, after the Parsons family who were local landowners and hereditary Earl of Rosse, Earls of Rosse. Birr is a de ...
,
Ireland Ireland ( ; ga, Éire ; Ulster Scots dialect, Ulster-Scots: ) is an island in the Atlantic Ocean, North Atlantic. It is separated from Great Britain to its east by the North Channel (Great Britain and Ireland), North Channel, the Irish Sea ...

Ireland
*
Members Church of God International The Members Church of God International, abbreviated as MCGI, is an international Christianity, Christian religious organization with headquarters in the Philippines. It started as a small group with less than a hundred believers. It is popularly ...
splits off from Iglesia ng Dios Kay Cristo Jesus in 1977 left after
Eliseo Soriano Eliseo "Eli" Fernando Soriano (April 4, 1947 – February 11, 2021) was a Filipino preacher and televangelist Televangelism ( tele- "distance" and "evangelism Image:Jakob Jordaens 002.jpg, The Four Evangelists In Christianity, evangelism ...
and others contested Levita Gugulan's leadership *The schism between the
Anglican Communion The Anglican Communion is the third largest Christian communion Communion may refer to: Religion * The Eucharist (also called the Holy Communion or Lord's Supper), the Christian rite involving the eating of bread and drinking of wine, re ...
and the
Continuing Anglican movement The Continuing Anglican movement, also known as the Anglican Continuum, encompasses a number of Christian churches, principally based in North America, which have an Anglican Anglicanism is a Western Christianity, Western Christian tradition ...
in 1977 * The schism from the Roman Catholic Church of the leaders of the
Society of Saint Pius X The Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX or FSSPX; la, Fraternitas Sacerdotalis Sancti Pii X) is an international priestly fraternity founded in 1970 by Marcel Lefebvre, a Traditionalist Catholicism, traditionalist French people, French titular bishop, ...
in 1988, when
Archbishop In many Christian Denominations Christians () are people who follow or adhere to Christianity, a monotheistic Abrahamic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus in Christianity, Jesus Christ. The words ''Christ (title), Christ'' an ...
Marcel Lefebvre Marcel François Marie Joseph Lefebvre (; 29 November 1905 – 25 March 1991) was a French people, French Catholic Church, Roman Catholic archbishop. In 1970, he founded the Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX) as a small community of seminarians in t ...
ordained four bishops despite a prohibition by the
Holy See The Holy See ( lat, Sancta Sedes, ; it, Santa Sede ), also called the See of Rome or Apostolic See, is the jurisdiction of the Bishop of Rome A bishop is an ordained, consecrated, or appointed member of the Clergy#Christianity, Christian ...
Catholic World News: "CDF prefect says SSPX in schism, suspended from sacraments"
(Retrieved 13 February 2015)
*The Moscow–Constantinople schism of 1996 was short-lived split by the Russian Orthodox Church who severe cut ties with Main church within Eastern Orthodoxy over claiming Autonomous control with
Estonian Apostolic Orthodox Church The Estonian Apostolic Orthodox Church ( et, Eesti Apostlik-Õigeusu Kirik; EOC) is an Orthodox church in Estonia under the direct jurisdiction of the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople. Under Estonian law it is the legal successor to the pr ...
instead keep recognised Estonian Orthodox Church under Moscow Patriarchate's control as the Canonical church of Estonia in 1996. This schism was rarely resolved as Ecumenical Patriarchate has declared acknowledge existence of EOC–MP and Russian Orthodox Church acknowledged existence of EAOC thus ending ROC cutting ties with EOC *The separation of the
Anglican Church in North America The Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) is a Christian denomination A Christian denomination is a distinct Religion, religious body within Christianity that comprises all Church (congregation), church congregations of the same kind, ident ...
from the Episcopal Church and the
Anglican Church of Canada Anglicanism is a Western Christianity, Western Christian tradition that has developed from the practices, liturgy, and identity of the Church of England following the English Reformation. Adherents of Anglicanism are called ''Anglicans''; t ...
in 2009 *The Moscow–Constantinople schism of 2018 has once again Russian Orthodox Church severe cut ties with Main church within Eastern Orthodoxy over granting
Autocephaly Autocephaly (; from el, αὐτοκεφαλία, meaning "property of being self-headed") is the status of a hierarchy, hierarchical Christian church whose head bishop does not report to any higher-ranking bishop. The term is primarily used i ...
s with then two Ukrainian Orthodox instead keep recognised Ukrainian Orthodox Church under Moscow Patriarchate's control as the Canonical church of Ukraine in 2018


See also

*
One true church The expression "one true church" refers to an ecclesiological In Christian theology, ecclesiology is the study of the Church (congregation), Church, the origins of Christianity, its relationship to Jesus, its role in salvation, its ecclesiastica ...
*
List of schisms in Christianity This is a list of Christian schisms. A religious schism occurs when a single religious body divides and becomes two separate religious bodies. The split can be violent or nonviolent but results in at least one of the two newly-created bodies cons ...
*
Secession Secession is the withdrawal of a group from a larger entity, especially a political entity A polity is an identifiable political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Soc ...

Secession
*
Old and New Light The terms Old Lights and New Lights (among others) are used in Protestant Protestantism is a form of Christianity that originated with the 16th-century Reformation, a movement against what its followers perceived to be Criticism of the Catholic ...


Notes


References

*


External links


''Encyclopædia Britannica'': "Schism"
{{DEFAULTSORT:Schism (Religion)