The Concept Of Secularism: Walzer Vs. Wæver

1126 words - 5 pages

For more than a century, the concept of secularism and its boundaries has been widely disputed by secularists and non-secularists alike. English dictionaries define secularism as simply the separation of church and state, or, the separation of religion and politics. Michael Walzer, a true secularist, believes that this separation is an essential democratic value and ultimately fosters toleration of a plurality of religions (Walzer, p. 620). Wæver, an opponent of secularism, defines secularism as “a doctrine for how society ought to be designed”– that religion and politics ought to be divided in order to ensure religious liberty, as well as religious-free politics. However, he does not deem that such a principle exists (Wæver, p. 210). Based on these different viewpoints, I have established a unique concept of secularism: the principle that religion and politics be kept apart, that the state remains neutral in regard to religion, and that liberty, equality, and fraternity be upheld in an attempt to successfully promote religious toleration and pluralism.
Although I do not consider myself a radical secularist, I identify more strongly with Walzer’s viewpoints. He stresses the importance of the structural, ritual, and political/cultural aspects of society necessary to successfully separate religion from politics. I strongly agree that a sharp institutional divide between church and state needs to exist, in which the church does not interfere in matters of the state and vice versa. I believe it even vital that countries, such as the United States, possess constitutions that state there will be no official state religion. In this way, religious toleration and equality will be undeniable. In terms of this institutional divide, specifically, I do not believe parochial schools should be state funded, nor should a creed be introduced into public schools. Infringing a belief system in a secular institution does not promote religious toleration. However, I would consider it acceptable if public schools vowed to teach all creationism theories or display all religious symbols in their classrooms. Walzer stresses that if secularism is to triumph, it is crucial that the state be neutral among all religious and non-religious groups.
Public state ceremonies should be distinct from any religious group. All holidays recognized by the state should be rooted in political history, such as the Fourth of July. If this were the case, Christmas should be removed from the Federal calendar, as it is Christian in nature. Unless the eight days of Hanukkah, Kwanza, or Ramadan, for instance, are recognized as national holidays, neither should Christmas, since it supports one creed over another, contradicting secularism. Traditional ceremonies also must remain secular. Walzer pointed out the inauguration of the American president and how, traditionally, he has put his hand on the Bible. Is this aligned with secularism? No. However, there are...

Find Another Essay On The Concept of Secularism: Walzer vs. Wæver

The concept of reflexivity Essay

2375 words - 10 pages Seifeldin Soliman Advanced Writing in Disciplines Final DraftUnit Four: Investigating learning transfer: Reflexivity in actionAn Essential ReflectionDear Professor Noonan,The most challenging aspect of this project was understanding the concept of reflexivity. Qualley's passage explaining the concept guided me through what it was exactly. Although I wasn't well acquainted with the concept at first, I quickly realized that there were many

The Concept of Marriage Essay

1041 words - 4 pages Marriage is the bonding between people by social union or legal contract. Marriage is when two people have a wedding ceremony to exchange vows before God and their family. People spend hundreds to thousands of dollars on wedding ceremonies for something they have no clue of what they are getting into. Different cultures have their own concept of marriage. I am going to explore the biblical and social concept of marriage. People enter into

The concept of mimesis

1432 words - 6 pages The idea of mimesis is that a certain medium is a representation of reality. The concept of mimesis extends to art, media, and other texts. Mimesis also creates a sense of false reality, as often the art appears and is can be taken as real as the real world. In Plato’s Allegory of the Cave, the concept of mimesis is explained and through analysis of the novel and several other pieces of work can the implications and effects of mimesis be grasped

The concept of Prejudice

811 words - 3 pages Prejudice can be defined in one of several ways. There is an intellectual as well as a behavioral aspect to the concept of prejudice. Prejudice encompasses negative thoughts and feelings that a person has toward another person. Thoughts and feelings linked to prejudice are generally not based upon the experience the individual, but rather the prevailing thoughts and attitudes of the society within which the individual has been socialized. These

The Concept of Psychology

767 words - 4 pages people are born with a different state of mind to the part they are born with. I personally believe that the sex you are born with should not decide the gender you choose. I feel like people who do things like cross dress should be accepted as they are, but that is not how it is today. People are not that accepting. A lot of people think if it is not “normal” it should not exist. The concept of psychology will always be changing over time. If

The Concept of Delinquency

724 words - 3 pages , and peer relations” (Siegel & Welsh, 2012). How did the concept of concern for children develop? The treatment of children was not always what it is today, history shows that today’s treatment of children has only been around for the past 350 years or so. In the Middle Ages, paternalistic family practices were very popular. This paternalistic family style consisted of the father being the final authority of all family matters and he exercises

The Concept of Power

1627 words - 7 pages Power was always perceived as a gauge by nations’ military might and ability to impose its will on others; however since taking this course, the perception has changed. There are multiple definitions of power. Power can be used to influence other nations to meet the host nation’s intent. Power can be interpreted through economic influence or old fashion brute force among many things. In essence, power is the means in which influence is

The Concept of Lifelong Learning

3149 words - 13 pages The lifelong learning concept has changed over the past years by different scholars such as Jacque Delors and international organisations such as OECD, World Bank and European Commission It is a concept that many countries try import into their educational policies to better their economies. The purpose of this essay is to use literature review to analyse the 20th century term lifelong learning prefiguring the ideas in the 21st century

The Concept of Self-Efficacy

1853 words - 7 pages The Concept of Self-Efficacy Self-efficacy, for the purpose of this study, may be defined as a person’s optimistic self-belief. This is the belief that a person can develop the skills to perform new or difficult tasks to cope with changes in health and functioning. When a person perceives self-efficacy, it will facilitate goal-setting, effort, investment, persistence, overcoming obstacles and recovery from disappointments and failures

Analysing the Concept of Place

1317 words - 6 pages Place: Place can be conceptualised as being a “physical setting” or a “simulated location” (Moores 2003: 11) and can be seen in a symbolic, material or experiential dimension. Many scholars have introduced the concept of media space, such as John Urry (2000). However, it is the works of Doreen Massey (1995), Joshua Meyrowitz (1985, 1994) and Paddy Scannell (1996) who have defined place as being either pluralised or marginalised. The Doubling of

The Concept of Social Capital

1852 words - 7 pages The concept of social capital has been used to represent the extent of social cohesion that is found in communities and it entails the processes between individuals or groups, which create networks, social trust and customs, and necessitate co-operation and co-ordination for mutual gain. Social capital is a significant determinant of health in older people and has been the focus on the ageing population in policymaking. Healthy ageing strategies

Similar Essays

Secularism: Eternally Growing Examines The Ideal Of Secularism Through The Works: "Confessions", By St. Augustine, "The Canterbury Tales", By Chaucer, "The Prince", By Machiavelli, And Shakespear

2180 words - 9 pages Secularism: Eternally GrowingLiterature, like other forms of art, is in some instances a conduit for the expression of an individual's religious belief. One author, Saint Augustine of Hippo, took that expression a step further in his autobiography Confessions by transposing his core, idiosyncratic faith onto the government and political establishment of the State. This idea of theocracy, where God is the supreme civil ruler, is not without an

Discussion On The Secularism Of Turkey In It's Politics, Culture And International Relations.

3507 words - 14 pages The Republic of Turkey: Secularism at the Crossroads of Europe and AsiaThe area of modern day Turkey has always been the crossroads of Europe, and Asia. The land has been the home to Jews, Christians and Muslims. Having been split up between two continents, and three different religions, it is a unique place considering it's past and potential. The Central Intelligence Agency of the United States reports that the Republic of Turkey has a

The Concept Of Intelligence Essay

3430 words - 14 pages The Concept of Intelligence ABSTRACT: Gilbert Ryle’s dispositional analysis of the concept of intelligence makes the error of assimilating intelligence to the category of dispositional or semi-dispositional concepts. Far from being a dispositional concept, intelligence is an episodic concept that refers neither to dispositions nor to ‘knowing how,’ but to a fashion or style of proceeding whose significance is adverbial. Being derivative

Concept Of The Automobile Essay

646 words - 3 pages The invention of the automobile has been one of the greatest achievements of the 20th century. To mankind, it has been a definitive icon of independence and personal freedom. But with the birth of the automobile now comes the beginning of the concept vehicle.The invention started with the Tin Lizzies in the 1900's. Vehicles in the early days were produced to look the same. These vehicles looked like a box on wheels, similar to a horseless