The second most divisive factor in preventing internal stability in a community or nation is religious inequality.
This is one of the factors at the root of instability in Northern Ireland, and in many of the Arab speaking nations of the Middle East. In both cases, the issue is not ethnic identity, but of religious identity within subgroups of the same religion—Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland, and Shiites and Sunnis in the Middle East.
When ethnicity and religion are combined as symbols of identity, the level of internal stability in a community or nation can potentially get worse.
Six million Jews were murdered during World War II in Germany because of their ethno-religious identity. Christians and Muslims also have a history of confrontation that began more than nine centuries when the Holy Roman Empire tried to restore Christian control of the Holy Land. Solving the problem of religious integration and inequality is a current issue in many nations across the world.
In this regard, nations with homogenous ethnic and religious populations are intrinsically more stable than that those are not. In many respects this accounts for the advances that have been made in democracy in the Scandinavian nations.
Chapter 24: Societal Mastery