The scale and variety of acts of religious intolerance evident in so many countries today are of enormous contemporary concern. This 2005 study attempts a thorough and systematic treatment of both Universal and European practice. The standards applicable to freedom of religion are subjected to a detailed critique, and their development and implementation within the UN is distinguished from that within Strasbourg, in order to discern trends and obstacles to their advancement and to highlight the rationale for any (...) apparent departures between the two systems. This dual focus also demonstrates the acute need for the European Court to heed the warnings from various patterns of violation throughout the world illustrated by the Human Rights Committee and the Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief. (shrink)
Religions around the world show support, ambivalence and antagonism towards the right to freedom of religion. Legal and political debates are affected by these profound differences. In this book an international group of scholars offer theoretical and empirical analyses.
This paper is a critical and comparative legal historical study, which offers a global vision of the U.S. Legal System, according to the religious factor impact and its complex dimensions (e.g. religious liberty, Church-State relations, welfare state & solidarity). The principal goal is the deconstruction of the fake official History, elaborated after the Second World War (e.g. inferences, impostures, fallacies). At the same time, it shows the social development (and the kind of commitment in each period), and how it happens (...) the consolidation of the system thanks to the regulation. In this way, it is possible to pay attention to the American experimental evolution (not lineal or exceptional –as many U.S.hand-books pretend): from colonial Blue Laws (or Sunday regulation), up to the current regulation on freedom of religion and non-discrimination. Also, this paper offers a systematic set of diverse legal sources (e.g. Executive orders & rules, Legislative statutes, Judicial cases & resolutions). Another goal of this paper is the evaluation of the allegedly paradoxical policies and regulations in this field, during the last two Administrations (Clinton and W. Bush); both of them, from extreme views (linked at the end), they used incorrectly the religious factor, and they confused the institutions. The result seems to be a landed in the Postmodernity (less realistic and more speech based). (shrink)
In a number of recent federal court cases parents have sought to have their children exempted from certain school activities on the grounds that the children's participation in those activities violates their (the parents') right to freedom of religion. In Mozert v. Hawkin's County Public Schools (827 F. 2nd 1058) fundamentalist parents of several Tennessee public school children brought civil action against the school board for violating their constitutional right of freedom of religion. These parents sought (...) to prevent their children from exposure to beliefs or practices opposed to their (the parents') religious convictions. They claim that elementary school readers introduce ideas repugnant to their and their children's deeply held religious tenets. (shrink)
Full freedom of religion did not come into existence until the end of the 18th century, and authentic dialogue only in the 20th century. All civilizations had at their heart a religion which shaped and reflected that civilization; all problems had to be resolved within the thought-struc- tures of the dominant state-enforced religion. Those thought limitations sooner or later prevented arriving at the necessary solutions, and thus led to the decline of every civilization except Christendom-Become-West- (...) ern Civilization-Becoming-Global Civilization, which has exponentially surpassed all previous civilizations. The separation of religion from the power of the state has al- lowed the infinite spirit of humanity (Image of God) to continually resolve the always new problems. Dia- logue, meaning being open to learn from the other, moves Globalization from destruction toward construc- tion. (shrink)
Problematic issues of freedom of religion in their theoretical and practical comprehension, in particular their contemporary analysis in the context of the principles enshrined in the Vatican II adopted by the document on freedom of religion - the Declaration of "Dignitatis humanae" - "Dignity of the human" are extremely relevant and important as a philosophical- legal and religious studies, and in theological discourses.
Why it is that the principle of freedom of religion, rather than a more general principle such as liberty or liberty of conscience, figures so prominently in our lived experience and, in particular, in the constitutional commitment to the free exercise of religion? The Paper argues, negatively, that the most prominent answers offered thus far fall short; and positively, that the principle of freedom of religion arises out of a thicker understanding of the much neglected (...) relationship between religious liberty and democracy. Indeed, a proper account of the legitimacy of the democratic process. I argue, dissolves the mystery surrounding freedom of religion, and thus allows for an adequate justification of this principle. The thesis of this paper is that freedom of religion is a remedy that redresses the exclusion of certain religious arguments from the democratic process. The redress is grounded in a republican concern for political self-determination while exclusion is prescribed by a liberal ideal of political legitimation. (shrink)
Given the rise of religious movements during the past decade, some have argued that the basic principles of liberal democracy such as separation of church and state and principle of the public use of reason are too restrictive and ought to be rethought. I would like to argue along a Habermasian line that the principle of secular justification ought not to result in a private/public split in religious citizens’ identity if they recognize and adopt an “institutional translation proviso”. This proviso (...) requires an epistemic ability on the part of religious citizens that enables them to translate their religious beliefs and insight into secular reasons when they pass beyond the informal public sphere into governmental institutions like courts and parliaments. Citizens can express and defend their claims in the public sphere in religious terms if they cannot find secular translation for them. However, this proposal requires a complementary change in the mentality of the secular citizens that recognizes the continued existence of religious communities in diverse liberal democracies. (shrink)
This problem, which was actual in the theoretical and practical aspects, became the subject of an interested discussion of an international scientific conference on issues of state-church relations, which took place on December 4-5, 1995 in Kyiv based on the Department of Religious Studies at the Institute of Philosophy of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine.
In the summer of 2014, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that the French 2010 law banning face-covering clothing in public spaces, the so-called burqa ban, did not violate the right to freedom of religion. Due to the ‘wide margin of appreciation’, the Court deemed the ban proportionate to the French state’s legitimate aim with the ban of preserving the conditions of ‘living together’. The paper analyses and provides an internal criticism of the Court’s justification for this (...) judgement focusing on the aim of living together and the right to freedom of religion. The Court’s justification presupposes that there is a justification for the ban in terms of the aim of living together, this is a legitimate aim and the ban is a proportional means of pursuing this aim. The paper analyses the Court’s justification and argues that it fails to substantiate all three conditions. (shrink)
The issue of religious freedom while serving a sentence of imprisonment often occupies scientists from around the world. Basically, they agree that a prisoner, regardless of the act for which he or she has been convicted, has the right to religious freedom. Problems are posed, however, by the question of delimiting this freedom, especially at the level of the right to practise a chosen religion during prison isolation. The decisions of international tribunals and national courts are (...) not uniform owing to the generality of the rules governing this issue. The initial research question that we pose is this: how does society perceive the right to religious freedom in prisons? Does a convict have the right to demand respect for the rules of his or her religion regarding diet, clothes, appearance and participation in religious services? We look for answers to these questions in research conducted in Polish society, one that is confronted by international regulations. (shrink)
In this contribution we examine the various amoral types of reasoning that have long predominated in the history of tolerance. In doing this we also hope to show that these amoral notions of tolerance are always far removed from, and in conflict with, the idea of freedom of religion as a moral and political right. In conclusion we show that when the liberal notion of freedom as a personal and moral right predominates, then the notion of tolerance (...) loses some of its meaning. (shrink)
The proclamation of freedom of conscience and freedom of religion is one of the important achievements of mankind in the context of civilization development. The analysis of the historical temporal aspect of the development of freedom of conscience and freedom of religion testifies to the constant attention to these problems in the diversity of their manifestation. They without exaggeration are some of the most important and relevant topics of philosophical, legal, religious, and theological discourse. (...) Essential conceptual peculiarity of freedom of conscience and freedom of religion, their paradigmatic fundamentals, is devoted to a large array of scientific and theological literature, special studies. (shrink)
The right of freedom of religion is one of the fundamental rights guaranteed in the Malaysian Constitution. The provision over the right to freedom of religion is seen as one of the most crucial provisions ever stated in the Federal Constitution. Article 11 has never been amended. Indeed, provision in Article 3 reiterates the right of individuals, especially the non-Muslims to profess and practise their religion freely, without any fear and interference. The special status of (...) the religion of Islam enshrined in Article 3 does not mean that non-Muslims have no right in matter of freedom of religion. However, the Federal Constitution seems to restrict the right to freedom of religion, in the sense that freedom of religion in Malaysia is not absolute. There have been several restrictions imposed not only within the constitutional framework but also other general legislations. Among provisions that furnished such restrictions can be seen in Articles 11, 11 and 10 of the Federal Constitution. Moreover, the Parliament had also passed several legislations allowing such restrictions. This can be seen, among others, the Internal Security Act of 1960, the Societies Act of 1966, the Police Act of 1967, the Printing Presses and Publications Act of 1984, the Town and Country Planning Act of 1976 and the Penal Code. As such, Muslims and non-Muslims alike must adhere to certain religious constraints for the sake of public order, public health and morality.While freedom of religion is guaranteed for individuals in the Malaysian Constitution, some states in Malaysia have penalised Muslims who renounced the Islamic faith. Although there is no death penalty for apostasy in Malaysia, apostates are subject to punishments like fine, imprisonment and to a certain extent whipping. In certain states, apostates are detained at the rehabilitation centre for up to 36 months. These have brought concern to human rights activists because such punishments and detention may seem contrary to the right to freedom of religion enshrined under Article 11 of the Federal Constitution and Article 5 that guarantees individual liberty. This article attempts to investigate whether restrictions over the right of freedom of religion particularly when Muslims renounce the Islamic faith is constitutionally valid. It also intends to highlight the conflict in the laws surrounding the punishment for apostasy in various states in Malaysia. (shrink)
Tertullian first coined the phrase ‘the freedom of religion’. This article considers what this entails. I argue that Tertullian’s discussion of religious liberty derives its theoretical significance from his creative repurposing of the Roman idea of liberty as non-domination. Tertullian contends that the Roman magistrates’ treatment of Christian citizens and loyal subjects amounts to tyrannical domination characterized by the absence of the traditional conditions for non-domination: the rule of law, rule in and responsive to the interests of the (...) people, and citizens’ rights. On his reworking of these criteria, he argues that citizens and loyal subjects should have the right to act publicly on the convictions of their conscience even if these actions conflict with the state’s civil religion. Tertullian shows that non-domination is a highly flexible idea that does not necessarily entail the participatory ‘free state’ of republicanism. Moreover, by applying the logic of non-domination to questions surrounding religious liberty, he opens up an important avenue of investigation largely ignored in the contemporary republican literature on non-domination. (shrink)
The International Academy of Freedom of Religion and Belief was formed in July 1985 in England as a result of the meeting of the International Working Group on Religious Freedom in UNESCO with representatives of various religious traditions from different countries. The composition of MASRP includes, in the first place, experts and scientists from the departments of state-church relations of universities of different denominations and from different countries of the world - the USA, England, Italy, Spain, Greece, (...) Belgium, Germany, etc. Currently, among the members of the MSDP, there are already scholars and public figures from Ukraine, Russia, Bulgaria and other post-socialist countries. The head office of MASRP is located in Washington, DC. The President of the Academy is James Wood - Professor at Baylor University. The function of the head of the section on the organization of international scientific conferences on freedom of religion is organized by Cole Durem, professor at Bringam-Young University. From Ukraine, the academician of the MSDP is Doctor of Philosophy, Professor Kolodny AM. (shrink)
The article analyses Egyptian jurisprudence on the issue of apostasy, with a focus on conversion from Islam to Christianity. It argues that the Egyptian judiciary has failed to develop a harmonious relationship between Islamic law and the principle of freedom of religion. It looks at how the majority of cases examined before the Egyptian judiciary reveal a continued tension between freedom of religion as defined in international human rights law and its judges’ interpretation of Islamic law (...) as a constitutive element of public order. Recently, the Supreme Administrative Court tried to break through traditional barriers regarding the right of converts of Christian origin to record their re-affiliation to Christianity in their documents of identification, and pragmatically justified this precedent in light of the requirements of modern states, whereby identity cards should reflect the correct information of each citizen. Yet it argues that the court was not conscious of freedom of religion as a fundamental individual right, and moreover, that this precedent has not been followed with respect to converts of Islamic origin. Finally, the paper argues that, for a sustainable solution to the legal tensions concerning apostasy in Egyptian courts, a new perspective is required on the relationship between Islamic law and religious freedom whereby the universal understanding of freedom of religion can be legitimized from within Islamic legal traditions. The article also proposes a set of constitutional and legal measures to enhance freedom of religion in Egypt. (shrink)
I (hereafter: the writer) argue that, first of all, the freedom of religion and some standards of freedom of religion (hereafter: SFR) is absolute. In addition, different concepts of God do not change SFR, and this claim proves that revises of God's ideas do not lean toward of restructuring of SFR. These two claims have been presented by an argument that the writer calls the slap argument. Last but not least, the slap argument shows that theocracy (...) suffers from these delighted features of SFR. (shrink)
The aim of this paper is to present and analyse legal acts cited in the European Parliament resolution of 20 January 2011 on the situation of Christians in the context of freedom of religion. The author presents the substance of the right to religious freedom and the position of religious freedom among other human rights. The paper also shows the formation of European law on religious freedom and grasps the development trends in this area. Because (...) of the discrepancies that arise when translating the same foreign terms into the Polish language, in order to better explain the content of the cited documents, the texts are also given in English language. The article is the summary of basic legal regulations relevant to reflect on religious freedom at EU level. Compiled materials may be useful to continue the reflection on religious freedom. (shrink)
Within the Irish government there is a discussion regarding the possibility of limiting the legal protection afforded to the confessional secret. This paper addresses the question of whether this suggestion, if it were to be implemented by the legislature, would be compatible with the right to religious freedom under Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). This text will also highlight the role of the confessional secret in canon law and the protection of it under German (...) law. Catholic priests, should this plan that is currently under discussion be implemented, were obliged to disclose the knowledge gained in confession to law enforcement authorities. The canonical consequence of such a breach of the confessional secret would be excommunication. In such cases priests therefore would only have the choice between breaking the law (which would probably also be punishable under criminal law) and excommunication, with all the resulting disadvantages. In this paper, the canonical law rules regarding confession are presented before the provisions relating to the confessional secret in § 53 para. 1 No. 1 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, § 383 para. 1 No. 4 of the Code of Civil Procedure and § 139 para. 2 of the Criminal Code are discussed. Specifically, the question is raised as to whether a duty of priests to co-operate with the law enforcement authorities may be established by law. Here in particular the protection of the confessional secret under the protection of freedom of religion under Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights will be discussed. It has to be noted however that the protection afforded by Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights extends far less than the scope of § 53 para. 1 No. 1 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, § 129 para. 2 of the Criminal Code and § 383 para. 1 No. 4 of the Code of Civil Procedure, as Art. 9 ECHR only protects the confessional secret as far as it is required from a religious point of view, but not a general pastoral secret. The article then includes a discussion on the limitations of Article 9 ECHR. Limitations of Article 9(1) ECHR on religious freedom under Article 9(2) ECHR are only permitted if they are prescribed by law and necessary in a democratic society for the protection of public order, health, morals or the rights of others. This is discussed against the background of the legislative goal of more effective law enforcement. As a result, a limitation of the protection of confessional secret through normal (sub-constitutional, domestic) laws, despite the understandable goal of more effective law enforcement, is not compatible with Article 9 of the ECHR. (shrink)
A human right to freedom of religion is not equivalent to a right to tolerance. Human rights and tolerance-rules serve for different purposes and are based on different justifications. Tolerance-rules serve to protect a peaceful living together with strangers who share no common values. Human rights serve to protect every individual’s personhood. Religion can only be a matter of human rights, if and so far as it is a condition of development and maintenance of personhood. Discussion about (...) a human right to freedom of religion makes sense only if we can identify a particular scope of protection which concerns only religion and if the freedom of religion is not embraced by wider-framed freedoms. The freedom of religious thoughts and the freedom of religious speech are embraced by the general human rights to freedom of thoughts and freedom of speech. Here, there is no need for a special human right to freedom of religion. The right not to be forced to act contrary to religiously founded moral rules is embraced by the general human right to freedom of conscience. And again, there is no need for a special human right. The target of religious practices in a narrower sense is to become flexible and porous and not to resist the threats of the sacral in order to avoid the destruction of personhood. Therefore, we have to recognize a human right to freedom of religious rites. It protects only the actions of accommodation to the overwhelming power of the sacral. It does not protect, however, any action with which it is intended to rule the world or to rule over others, to organize certain practical challenges, or to discover or to maintain scientific theories or technical means. (shrink)
This collective volume offers the radically new thesis that, generically-considered, philosophy and science are identical and great because they are mainly psychological forms of wondering about organizational formation and operation, forms of behavioral organizational and leadership psychology.
The article examines the practice of the applicability of the Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (hereinafter—ICCPR) and Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (hereinafter—ECHR). Through the case—law of the European Court on Human Rights (hereinafter—ECtHR) and insights of the Human Rights Committee the author is investigating the content and limits of the freedom of religion. The article examines in detail the limiting clauses to the freedom (...) of belief (national security, public order, public health, public morals) and the possibility to apply derogation clause. The author comes to the conclusion that due to the complexity of this right it is difficult to forecast the future developments of this right. The jurisprudence of the ECtHR is numerous as well as the decisions of the Court are often accompanied by dissenting opinions. Moreover, some potential cases related to the freedom of religion are not considered by the ECtHR as the admissibility criteria are not met. Therefore the author looks forward to the forthcoming jurisprudence of both—regional and universal human rights bodies. (shrink)
Are humans naturally predisposed to religion and supernatural beliefs? If so, does this naturalness provide a moral foundation for religious freedom? This volume offers a cross-disciplinary approach to these questions, engaging in a range of contemporary debates at the intersection of religion, cognitive science, sociology, anthropology, political science, epistemology, and moral philosophy. The contributors to this original and important volume present individual, sometimes opposing points of view on the naturalness of religion thesis and its implications for (...) religious freedom. Topics include the epistemological foundations of religion, the relationship between religion and health, and a discussion of the philosophical foundations of religious freedom as a natural, universal right, drawing implications for the normative role of religion in public life. By challenging dominant intellectual paradigms, such as the secularization thesis and the Enlightenment view of religion, the volume opens the door to a powerful and provocative reconceptualization of religious freedom. (shrink)
Article 14 of the United Nation’s Convention on the Rights of the Child declares, “States Parties shall respect the right of the child to freedom of thought, conscience and religion.” In this paper I will consider whether signatory nation-states may be in breach of this article by permitting religious groups to communicate the concept of Hell to children in a particular way.
The last chapter of Spinoza's Theological-Political Treatise (TTP) is a brief for freedom of religion. In our enthusiasm for Spinoza's conclusion it is easy to overlook the blatant contradiction between this thesis and the central claim of the immediately preceding chapter that "right over matters of religion is vested entirely in the sovereign." There Spinoza emphasizes the necessity that there be but one sovereign in the state and the threat that autonomous religious authorities would pose to the (...) authority of this sovereign. This last claim is, in turn, bolstered by his analysis of the deficiencies of the Hebrew state in the chapter before, chapter 18, according to which it was the usurpation of political authority by priests that ultimately undermined the state. In other words, in chapters 18 and 19, Spinoza makes the case for the strict political control of religion only to conclude his treatise by arguing, in chapter 20, that the purpose of the state is, in reality, freedom and that that freedom manifests itself, in part, in freedom of religion. How could this latter not pose exactly the sort of threat to the sovereign and the state that leads Spinoza to insist on the sovereign's absolute control of religion? How can Spinoza insist that religion be both free and controlled by the state? This paper aims to answer this question and, in the process, explains a number of troubling features of the Theological-Political Treatise. (shrink)
The last chapter of Spinoza's Theological-Political Treatise is a brief for freedom of religion. In our enthusiasm for Spinoza's conclusion it is easy to overlook the blatant contradiction between this thesis and the central claim of the immediately preceding chapter that "right over matters of religion is vested entirely in the sovereign." There Spinoza emphasizes the necessity that there be but one sovereign in the state and the threat that autonomous religious authorities would pose to the authority (...) of this sovereign. This last claim is, in turn, bolstered by his analysis of the deficiencies of the Hebrew state in the chapter before, chapter 18, according to which it was the usurpation of political authority by priests that ultimately undermined the state. In other words, in chapters 18 and 19, Spinoza makes the case for the strict political control of religion only to conclude his treatise by arguing, in chapter 20, that the purpose of the state is, in reality, freedom and that that freedom manifests itself, in part, in freedom of religion. How could this latter not pose exactly the sort of threat to the sovereign and the state that leads Spinoza to insist on the sovereign's absolute control of religion? How can Spinoza insist that religion be both free and controlled by the state? This paper aims to answer this question and, in the process, explains a number of troubling features of the Theological-Political Treatise. (shrink)
The book falls into four segments. In the first (Chapter 1), the particular conception of deity that has been predominant in western civilization—the theistic idea of God—is explicated and distinguished from several other notions of the divine. The second segment considers the major reasons that have been advanced in support of the belief that the theistic God exists. In chapters 2 through 4 the three major arguments for the existence of God are discussed, arguments which appeal to facts supposedly available (...) to any rational person, whether religious or not. Chapter 5 considers religious and mystical experience as a source and justification for theistic belief. And in Chapter 6 we examine the role that faith may play in the formation and justification of religious belief. We also consider the important issue of whether belief in God may be entirely rational quite apart from any evidence in its behalf. The third segment undertakes an examination of the problem of evil, which some have thought to provide rational grounds for atheism, the belief that the theistic God does not exist. A number of topics quite central to theistic religion are considered in the fourth segment of the book, chapters 8 through 11. These topics include miracles, the question of life after death, problems in relating the idea of divine foreknowledge to the belief in human freedom, and problems arising from the existence of diverse religions. (shrink)