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26 July 2007

State and Religion

- the illusion of separating the two

Written late July 2007 - (72 lines)

*

Many have tried to separate
A nation's religion from the state
Over the years and in doing so
Their great achievement has been to show
That it is easier said than done
It is difficult to think of anyone
State or individual, who did succeed
For any length of time, if indeed
It was ever successfully managed at all -
Does anyone present here recall?

Now imagine a region where an empire torn
By war then collapsed and a republic was born
The leaders of the day collectively chose
(We assume with good intentions) to impose
A secular system, constitution and state
On a pure Muslim nation which to this date
Has been unable to shake off those chains
Locked by the army which stubbornly retains
The keys in its old inflexible hand -
There lies the real power in the land...

(But the role of any army is not to dictate
Only to serve and patiently wait
To be called upon by the rulers of the day
In matters which cannot be solved in a peaceful way)

A deeply schizophrenic arrangement which will
Cause enormous friction within society until
Such time as the elite accepts the valid view
Of the overall majority, we hope without undue
Confrontation or violence or the break-up of the state
And allows real democracy to penetrate
Into every nook and cranny where no-one can hide -
Put simply: that is all for the people to decide!

The secular voices maintain their old tune
That their opinions will be vindicated soon
The elite revealed not to know very much
As election results prove them out of touch
And that tells us all that we need to know
About the direction we should NOT go

After some generations of secular rule
Is time running out for this particular school
Of thought in this hypothetical land?
That seems to be the case and we need to understand
The underlying reason why that is so -
It is very simple, as the following will show:

Religion should be a part of daily life
Reaching far beyond husband and wife
Children and the extended family -
Embracing and informing naturally
Business ethics, education and law
And, should it be needed, the conduct of war
Plus of course international diplomacy
In short, every aspect of society -
And despite all secular protests and tricks
It cannot be divorced from politics!

Wishful thinking, an illusion, a fantasy!
A hallucination to put it bluntly!

Can anyone explain how it would be done?
Many attempts have been and gone
And invariably the process derailed
As their grand projects eventually failed
Where it has been tried it did not last long -
The urge for harmony is simply too strong
The fertile ground is already prepared
And like all good things religion should be shared!

Let State and Religion freely converge
In the ideal case the two will merge
Far from being strangers or incompatible
In fact the two get on extremely well
And in all worldly matters, big or small
We would soon see the benefits for us all -
This is where the future begins:
State and Religion are healthy twins!

*

Copyright © 2007 - IBRAHEEM (O.E.H.Johansen) - All Rights Reserved

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