An Anti-Secularist. Manifesto. AshisNandy. I. Gandhi said he was secular. Yet, he thought poorly of those who wanted to keep religion and politics separate. He scandalized many in India who view themselves as progressive when, in the mids, he published ‘An Anti-Secularist Manifesto’. Free from the irate polemics seen in some recent anti-religious commentaries ( here and here), his “secularist manifesto” invites constructive.

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Many secularists are religious and many religious people — recognising the value of keeping government and religion separate — are secular. Nandy says, should be similarly plural and representative, irrespective of the person writing it.

His stance is in accord with the trend of recent employment tribunal and court decisions but it departs from the generous British tradition accommodating conscientious objection wherever possible. Nandy says that Eastern belief systems started out as fluid and plural religions. His point manifesto contains much that many citizens of religious faith could endorse: Limit the right of religious people delivering public services for example marriage registrars, judges, pharmacists, or care workers to conscientiously object to carrying out lawful parts of their job to rare and specific exemptions eg doctors and abortion agreed by parliament.

Commendably, Harris distances himself from any such imperious ambition. Why, for example, must a marriage registrar be legally compelled to perform a same-sex civil partnership ceremony against her religious conscience when other colleagues are readily available to do so?


Some operate outside the public sector while others come within its purview either through historical incorporation by the state eg church schools, religious hospitals or through having entered into contracts ati the state to pursue specific public purposes eg faith-based social service agencies. Should we be party to the epidemic of apologies that has swept the West and insist that Nandy take back everything he has said?

Since at this point his penchant for detail is not on display, let me suggest two forms of religious public speech he might care to consider: He decries the attempt to prevent secularsit and intellectuals from expressing their views.

Show 25 25 50 All. This site uses cookies. Where religious organisations join others in delivering public services, ensure they do so without:. His credentials as an expert social critic have not spared him from controversies that follow those who comment on politics. How did we come to have such fragile sensibilities?

‘Secularism is an inaccessible concept’

The most eminent sociologist of the previous generation, the late M. None of it engages with what families get up to in their home, or religious leaders within their own families.

Scholars have long been familiar with debates about text vs. Secularism is unfairly characterised and attacked by religious leaders as a way of seeking to protect their privileges.


A response to the ‘secularist manifesto’

Topics Religion Cif belief. End discrimination against nonreligious belief systems or organisations by ending their exclusion from:. This article is closed for comments.

Nandy had not spoken in a vacuum: Threads collapsed expanded unthreaded. They are wrong but they hardly rank compared to what is carried out by religious regimes. Catholicism Religion The papacy comment. Nandy suggests that the ideas abti Akbar and Ashoka would be more accessible to people rather than concepts of secularism, which have come in for some criticism.

The Jaipur Literary Festival is known to stir controversy. Show 25 25 50 All. They should, like anyone else, do so within the constraints of legality and sceularist.

A secularist manifesto | Evan Harris | Opinion | The Guardian

Williams distinguishes it from a “programmatic secularism”, which would seek to impose a secular humanist belief antii on society via state power. This is why secularists: Threads collapsed expanded unthreaded.

This is essentially a summary of article 9 of the European convention on human rights. Also published in Outlook magazine, at http: Printable version Jan 1, 3: