World News: Escalating Tensions between France and Turkey Highlight Muslin Secularism

Diplomatic relations between France and Turkey have, over the past week, deteriorated as civil and religious power which guide governments and peoples, intertwine each intensifying attempts to press their secular and often inciting agenda into the mainstream.

The diplomatic relations are, to say the least tense, which have punctuated the daily life of France and Turkey for several days are also, once freed from all their multiple spectacular and offensive aspects, revealing a lack of understanding today evident in the notion of secularism in several countries of the Muslim faith.

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Far from being insurmountable, this incomprehension nonetheless remains an obstacle likely to generate often violent clashes, focusing on beliefs difficult to contradict. It also reveals the incomprehension nourished by the Muslim world regarding the notion of French secularism.

And for good reason, these Muslim countries, which have made Islam the central axis of their political functioning, have not separated civil power and religious power, opting in the vast majority of cases for moderate Islamic regimes, fighting all radical drifts.

French Revolution and Agnosticism

To date, several reasons can explain this lack of separation. First, a hollow explanation is in order in the first place. France has, since the French Revolution and the 18th century in general, started a slow dechristianization which resulted in the separation of the Churches and the State in 1905.

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This dechristianization, initiated by the inability of the Church to respond to evils and concerns of the populations, associated with a culpable obscurantism capable of keeping these same populations in ignorance, gradually pushed France on the path of atheism or agnosticism, advancing the idea that the spiritual n had no place in the civil and political world.

However, and it is also in this that remains the incomprehension of certain Moslem countries towards secularism, the latter does not mean exclusion but separation without stigmatization and without condemnation.

A secular country, France has chosen to free itself from the influence of religion in the management of public affairs, which is not the case in countries of Muslim faiths where Islam remains, let us repeat. , the central axis of political functioning.

Impertinence or Vitality

At the same time, to the separation desired by France between religious affairs and public affairs, there is added a fundamental principle of the Republic, namely that of freedom of expression which is freed from any notion of moral or religious limit.

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So when some see impertinence, blasphemy, even provocation or an attack on the sacred, untouchable and venerated, in humorous, satirical or ironic representations on the subject of religion or its tutelary figures, of others, in the name of freedom of expression, see it as a language and a character that witnesses to the vitality of the Republic and of democracy.

So why this incomprehension? Well, because secularism defeats the Republic of all its religious rags in order to combat their influence and does not base its operation on a sacred text but on a written constitution devoid of spiritual references.

Then the question of reconciliation arises, the answer to which does not lie in the abandonment of one or the other of the positions but in the notion of tolerance and in the intelligence specific to each human society.

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Tolerance refers to the idea of ​​accepting difference; intelligence to one that the model of some can shock others and that consequently being silent is not to capitulate but rather the space of a reflection opening up another form of expression.


Bio: Olivier Longhi has extensive experience in European history. A seasoned journalist with fifteen years of experience, he is currently professor of history and geography in the Toulouse region of France. He has held a variety of publishing positions, including Head of Agency and Chief of Publishing. A journalist, recognized blogger, editor, and editorial project manager, he has trained and managed editorial teams, worked as a journalist for various local radio stations, a press and publishing consultant, and a communications consultant.

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