French politicians protest over Muslim street prayers in Paris
The politicians complain that the prayers are a misuse of public space
Politicians in France are trying to combat manifestations of Islamic extremism in their country such as the wearing of the hijab, or mass street prayers. The principle for doing so is by claiming that in France, the state is officially secular.
The problem with this position is that it promotes an ideal both unrealistic and impotent.
It is unrealistic because the reality of human nature, witnessed throughout human history, is that mankind is religious in nature. Gods are worshipped in every culture, even if they take the demythologized form of money, sex, and power in the modern secular materialist state. Removing the personification of these powers only hides our subservience to them.
It is impotent because materialism is irrational, unprincipled, and dehumanizing. In the face of such a decadent philosophy of life, a fierce and supremacist religion such as Islam can only appear potent. Banning it will only give it a sense of legitimacy.
Governments such as that in France (or in the Canadian province of Quebec) who declare themselves officially secular only salt the ground – they do not provide the conditions for a flourishing society.
While deserts can be conquered, only a true religion can create an oasis in them. Perhaps the solution to the conquest of Islam is to repudiate the anti-Christian and anti-family bias of the totalitarian state, that has been progressively transforming the West into a cultural ‘blank slate’ since the Enlightenment.
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