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Is A Jewish, Christian Or Muslim State Possible In The Modern World? Answer With Reference To At Least Two Of The Religion (All Three If You Like).

2801 words - 11 pages

A millennium ago, life was not surprisingly very different from today. People associated themselves with a religion not a nation state and lived under the doctrine that God had set out for them, which aided a simplistic view of the life. However with natural evolution the world, namely Europe founded governments and as a result nationalism replaced the allegiance of faith, which had formerly enabled its societies to cohere. These countries found it necessary to separate religion and politics in order to free government and science and technology from the constraints of religion. Thus as Christianity and the West colonized the world they brought their political ideals with them promoting democracy and capitalism which were to survive to become the predominant ideology in the modern world. But what did this mean for the other monotheistic religions, Judaism and Islam in the modern era? Jewish people had suffered through persecution since Abraham spoke to God and hence the creation of the state of Israel meant a fulfillment of God's promise to return them to their holy land, albeit not how they expected. Whilst Muslims had the modern world thrust upon them by the West, meaning they also had to accept their political systems. So with so much change, is it possible for a religious state to exist in the modern world? Western democracies are underwritten by the separation of powers doctrine, and have constitutions that explicitly grant freedom of religion. Therefore the United States could not possibly be a modern Christian state. However it is also universally understood that Israel is a Jewish state, and Israel also has separation of powers. Whilst for Islam politics have been the 'theatre of their religious quest' and thus no separation is necessary. So the question is whether or not a modern country can be considered as a religious state with separation of powers built on a foundation of the respective religions or whether a modern religious state requires religious heads of state that must be ruled by a religion party.When the Founding Fathers of the United States wrote the declaration of independence it was the first amendment that contained the provision: there shall be no establishment of religion or prohibition of free worship thereof. The successful protection of this freedom of conscience was the fundamental requirement that church and state be totally separated. The reasoning for the separation is underpinned by the ambitious nature of man as summed up by Thomas Jefferson regarding their newly formed democracy, as the lack of such a government marks '"the lowest grade of ignorance," of which political as well as religious leaders will always "avail themselves for their own purpose."' This does not mean that the Founding Fathers were not religious by any means; they simply had serious doubts about the deep seated nature of man. This is further supported by John Adams who wrote: "the question before the human race is whether the God of nature...

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