SECULARISM’S COMPATIBILITY WITH ISLAM IN LIGHT OF HOLY QURAN AND SUNNAH OF HOLY PROPHET MUHAMMAD (PBUH)
The quest of compatibility between Secularism and Islamic values is a long political as well as religious debate. But if it is judged with a moderate perspective, we can conclude that the both secularism and Islamic state can survive hand in hand with each other’s. Intact, the concept of state secularism which is about drawing a line between religious affairs and political matters can be used as a rebuttal against terrorism. The extremist behavior of certain religious organizations particularly the ones with militant theology possess treat to prominence of peace practices in Islam. These organizations seek political power using religious card with an agenda to dismantle the importance of religion. The idea of secularism turns out to be beneficial to Islamic values since it allows religious liberty and freedom of conscious but only if the secularism is dealt with moderation. Because if extremist behavior is involved even in secularism, there remains no difference between secularism and non-secularism which ultimately leads to the rigid constitutional principles like Laicite. In contrast to pure secularism, State secularism does not disadvantage any individual and at the same time it protects religious minorities and maintains the Islamic Peace prospect as well. The key to successful Islamic state in today’s era is to maintain an understanding between religion and politics and keep moderation between the two which is possible by practicing state secularism.
Confrontation of Islam and western ideologies is almost as old as the religion Islam itself. But since we live in a global village and adherents of Islam (Muslims) make up the second largest religious group in the world, they ultimately had to settle with western settlements. As a result of merging people who are historically related but ideologically distinguished, certain socioeconomic, political, geographical and regional agitations emerged among masses. These situation ships raised questions about whether Islam can be compatible with Western ideology of secularism or not? It also emphasis on the fact that extremism shown in the name of religious Islam does not reap any benefits to the state.