AP State Syllabus 8th Class Social Studies Important Questions 20th Lesson Understanding Secularism
In what way is Indian secularism different from that of other democratic countries?
The governments of other democratic countries will not interfere in the religions of its people. But the Indian government interferes in the religious matters. Thus it is different from other democratic countries.
Can there be different views within the same religion?
Yes. There can be different views within the same religion. Many religions in the world have different views.
Will the government intervene if some religious group says that their religion allows them to practise infanticide? Give reasons for your answer.
The government intervenes in this issue.
- In Indian secularism the state can intervene in religious affairs.
- This interference will be according to the ideals of the Constitution.
What are the three main schools of thoughts in Buddhism?
Read the following passage and answer the questions that follow.
In February 2004, France passed a law banning students from wearing any conspicuous religious or political signs or symbols such as the Islamic headscarf, the Jewish skullcap, or large Christian crosses. This law has encountered a lot of resistance from immigrants who are mainly from the former French colonies of Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco. In the 1960s, France had faced a shortage of workers and, therefore, had provided visas for these immi
grants to come and work in the country. The daughters of these immigrants often wear headscaives while attending school. However, with the passing of this new law, they have been expelled from their schools for wearing headscatves.
1. What was the law?
The law was to ban any conspicuous religious or political signs or symbols.
2. Who opposed the law?
The immigrants of France opposed this.
3. When was the law passed?
In February, 2004.
Read the first two paras and prepare two questions on this.
The most important aspect of secularism is its separation of religion from State power. This is important for a country to function democratically. Almost all the countries of the world will have more than one religious group living in them. Within these religious groups, there will most likely be one group that is in a majority. If this majority religious group has access to State power, then it could quite easily use its power and financial resources to discriminate against and persecute the persons of other religions. This tyranny of the majority could result in the discrimination, coercion and at times, even the killing of religious minorities. The majority could quite easily prevent minorities from practising their religions. Any form of domination based on religion is in violation of the rights that a democratic society guarantees to each and every citizen, irrespective of their religion. Therefore, the tyranny of the majority and the violation of Fundamental Rights that can result from it is one reason why it is important to separate the State and religion in democratic societies.
Another reason that it is important to separate religion from the State in democratic soci-eties is because we also need to protect the freedom of individuals to exit from their religion, embrace another religion or have the freedom to interpret religious teachings differently.
1. What is the most important aspect of secularism?
2. Who were in majority in India?