117 World Building Prompts for Creating Religions

These world building prompts come from 3000 World Building Prompts, which you can get at Amazon. This section is focused on creating religions.

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  1. What is this religion’s name?
  2. What historical event (such as a prophet) led to the creation of this religion?
  3. Was there a prophet?
  4. What was the prophet’s occupation prior to their divine revelation?
  5. What is the prophet’s story of interaction with the god?
  6. What time of the day and year did this occur on?
  7. What holidays have arisen and when are they?
  8. What does each holiday signify?
  9. How did the prophet die? Or is he/she still alive?
  10. How did the religion react to this?
  11. What did the god(s) do when the prophet died?
  12. Which god(s) does this religion worship?
  13. Is that god real?
  14. Does the god(s) answer prayers?
  15. What makes the god not answer a prayer?
  16. What can improve the odds of the god answering?
  17. Is the god capricious in answering?
  18. Does the god only answer prayers of true believers?
  19. What is the primary symbol of this religion?
  20. What other symbols exist?
  21. Are there any colors important to the religion and what do they signify?
  22. What is the religion famous for?
  23. If there’s an official language, what is it?
  24. What is the original language that sacred texts are written in?
  25. Are there written texts?
  26. What is the name of the most important written text?
  27. Is there a sacred language that only practitioners are taught?
  28. Is this a dead religion?


  1. Are there pilgrimages to holy sites?
  2. If so, how often are worshipers expected to make the pilgrimage?
  3. Must practitioners fast and for how long?
  4. Are there dietary restrictions?
  5. Are there restrictions on behavior?
  6. Are there restrictions on attire?
  7. On travel?
  8. How is a staunch believer determined?
  9. Does the religion do missionary work, actively trying to recruit people?
  10. Are they overzealous in missionary work?
  11. How often must practitioners worship?
  12. Does the number of times signify anything?
  13. How many visits to a church/shrine must they make in a time frame (week, month, year)?
  14. Are there any materials needed to worship (candle, mat)?
  15. What does the material(s) signify?
  16. Must worshippers wear anything specific while praying or visiting a holy site, and what is it?
  17. Must worshippers wear anything and what is it?
  18. Must worshippers assume a position while praying (kneeling, clasping hands)?
  19. What does the position signify?
  20. Is worship only formal, such as a priest conducting services?
  21. How long is each worship session?
  22. What is the goal of praying (atonement, showing faith, etc.)?
  23. What customs exist in the religion?
  24. What expectations, if not met, result in what punishments?
  25. How strict is the religion?

Places and Items

  1. Where is each special site?
  2. Is this location considered holy now?
  3. Is this location easily accessible because of terrain?
  4. Is this location controlled by a sovereign power that restricts access? Who?
  5. Is this location sacred to more than this religion so that it is contested land desired by others, too?
  6. What items/artifacts did the prophet have or receive?
  7. What powers do the artifacts have or are believed to have?
  8. Which artifacts are lost?
  9. Where are the missing artifacts rumored to be?
  10. Where is each of the remaining artifacts?
  11. How well guarded are they?
  12. What happens if any artifacts fall into the wrong hands and are used?
  13. Have any artifacts been split into multiple pieces, each hidden separately? Where are the pieces? Is there a treasure map?

Locations and Relations

  1. Are there sovereign power types (monarchies, democracies) where this religion flourishes more than others?
  2. Where does this religion struggle to thrive?
  3. Is the religion influential anywhere?
  4. What languages are they expected to speak, read, and write, if any?
  5. What species/races may join?
  6. What species/races are discouraged or forbidden? Why?
  7. What is this religion’s attitude toward each species and race in the setting?
  8. Do practitioners believe any group is especially in need of “saving?” Which ones and why?
  9. Does this religion have a contentious relationship with another religion? Why?
  10. Are there any religions which this one gets along with well?


  1. Are clergy allowed to join the military?
  2. What is this religion’s relationship with the military?
  3. Is this religion non-violent?
  4. Are practitioners allowed to join the military?
  5. Does the military have priests from this religion as part of it?
  6. Are the priests acting as counselors?
  7. Are the priests acting as healers?
  8. Are the priests involved in the fighting?
  9. What kind of armor are the priests allowed to wear?
  10. What kind of armor are the priests forbidden from wearing and why?
  11. What weapons are the priests allowed to use?
  12. What weapons are the priests forbidden from using and why?


  1. Has the religion developed any sects? What are they and how do they differ?
  2. Does this religion have a recognized leader? What is their title?
  3. Are there individual leaders at different locations and what is their title and responsibilities?
  4. What sort of power do these individuals wield?
  5. What happens if one of them exceeds their authority?
  6. Are there any individuals alive or dead who are especially important to this religion?
  7. Does this religion have saints?
  8. What sort of afterlife does this religion imagine?
  9. Are the wicked punished or forgiven?
  10. Are the good rewarded?
  11. Is there a place like hell?
  12. Is there a place like heaven?
  13. Do they believe in reincarnation?
  14. How many times can someone reincarnate?
  15. Is reincarnation real or just an idea?
  16. How does the religion prepare people for death?
  17. What causes people to lose faith in this religion?
  18. What causes people to stop satisfying the religion’s requirements?
  19. Are the gods believed to reward the faithful?
  20. If so, for what are they rewarded?
  21. What form does the reward take?
  22. Must people die to receive the reward?
  23. Is the belief in the reward accurate?
  24. Do the gods punish followers for misdeeds?
  25. What leads to a punishment?
  26. What form does punishment take?
  27. What can someone do to atone for a misdeed?
  28. What role does this religion play in society?
  29. Are people encouraged to only worship one god in this religion or are they allowed to have others?
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