And sometimes asked what I mean when I refer to myself as a secularist. The term secular has different meanings but when I describe my own position as secular I’m referring to a view encompassing two broad principles: firstly the separation of religion from state leaves religious people free to practise their religion

Provided they don’t infringe the freedoms of others and allows the non-religious to live without the imposition of religion through law, education, government, employment or health. This promotes freedom of religion and from religion. Secondly the principle of equality before the law seeks to

Remove all privilege or penalty for having or lacking religious faith, to ensure that no belief – religious or otherwise – receives special protection from criticism. And that inequalities which some support within their religion won’t be supported outside it. Obviously under this principle blasphemy and apostasy are non punishable. When properly understood secularism creates

An environment of equality that benefits us all. Which is why it’s supported by theists and atheists, religious and non-religious people, alike. This is not a Christian nation, it’s not even a religious nation. It’s a nation of many faiths and none. And even within faith groups there can be fundamental

Differences of opinion on important issues. Establishing secular boundaries that prevent any single religion imposing its values on everyone else is as much a protection for the religious as it is for the non religious. Boundaries naturally upset those whose nature is to impose and people who’ve

Got used to privilege don’t like it being removed. Their complaints are to be taken for granted. When Sayeeda Warsi told the Vatican that aggressive secularism is being imposed by stealth, likening it to totalitarianism, and saying secularism denied people the right to religious identity this was shameless

Misrepresentation. Secularism denies no one religious identity. It defends that freedom but not the freedom to impose that identity on others. What secularism says is that having a religious identity does not justify special tax exemption, especially for the already rich, preaching religion in state schools, inserting narrow religious values into common law, having unelected

Religious leaders as legislators or demanding council prayers. Redressing these unjust and inappropriate privileges is not totalitarian nor is it an attack on faith. It’s a recognition of the freedom of all people to live without divisive inequalities. Secular principles supported by theists and atheists alike encourage fairness and mutual consideration and help us all

Within reasonable limits to live together in the way we choose. you


Recommended Posts

No comment yet, add your voice below!

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *