Can we still today perceive Europe as the last shelter of secularism? Is the place of Religion as we used to cognize it a personal affair that should non look on the public infinite and even play a function at the province?

In the twelvemonth 2007 an international conference was organized at the Libera Universita degli Studi HYPERLINK “ hypertext transfer protocol: // ” ” HYPERLINK “ hypertext transfer protocol: // ” San Pio VHYPERLINK “ hypertext transfer protocol: // ” ” in Rome to believe about the nature and development of the European political idea after 1989 between globalisation and new humanitarianism. One of the chief issues discussed was a inquiry of how the different political and philosophical civilizations have come back to inquiries about faith ‘s function in public domain. In add-on to the issue of individuality, this is the cardinal rational inquiry of our times and one of the most exciting new zones of interdisciplinary research and surveies in both European and non European surveies and even in some postcolonial research centres.

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It seems quire relevant to inquire these inquiries with the quite few issues that sprung up with the fusion and Europeanization processes between more than 27 provinces now of the continent those new large and enormous wars that lasted for decennaries.

In his article ‘ A new Humanitarianism in Europe between Secularism and the Return of Religion Dnillo Brechi reported that even most renown intellectuals of godlessness and secularism have started to raise inquiries about the bounds of secularism. ‘ faiths such as Judaism and Christianityaˆ¦ . Habermas is more and more doubting about the thesis of an unstoppable secularisation of the West, if non of the full universe. On the contrary, the last old ages have shown how secularized Europe is much more of an exclusion than a regulation. ‘1

One of the chief thrusts for these inquiries about Europe ‘s secularism is that dialectic on European individuality and the place of faith in the incorporate fundamental law in add-on to the large refusal and rejection of Turkey ‘s to fall in the European Union and which is a rejection

see hypertext transfer protocol: // main_page=news_articleHYPERLINK “ hypertext transfer protocol: // main_page=news_article & A ; article_id=195 ” & amp ; HYPERLINK “ hypertext transfer protocol: // main_page=news_article & A ; article_id=195 ” article_id=195

most likely due to the fact of Turkey being a Muslim state.

Wordss like ‘Lord ‘ ‘God ‘ , ‘Christian Patrimony ‘ , and ‘Christian Club ‘ in the European fundamental law undertaking appeared to set European secularism in uncertainty despite the uninterrupted talk about the committedness to secularism. This thought has been reinforced by claims and declarations of personalities and European parties about accepting Meleagris gallopavo ‘s fall ining the European Union as a menace to the thought of Europe as a ‘Christian Club ‘ .

2. Christian Religion in the incorporate fundamental law

The dialectics of Christianity and secularism appear in the really day-to-day patterns of political and societal establishments in a competitory yet complex mode. In his Religion and Modernization: Sociologists and Historians Debate the Secularization Thesis, Bruce Steve wrote ‘ Where Culture, individuality, and sense of worth are challenged by a beginning advancing either an foreign faith or rampant secularism and that beginning is negatively valued, secularisation will be inhibited. Religion can supply resources for the defence of a national, local, cultural, or position group civilization. Again, Poland and the Irish Republic are premier illustrations, but Ulster can besides be included, as in more attenuated signifier can other ‘dual societies ‘ , or the fringes of secularising societies, resistant to the foreign invasion of the centre. In the united land, for illustration, the greater fond regard to their spiritual establishments of the Welshman and still more of the Scottishs evidences this factor. The national civilization and individuality are associated with presbytery and chapel against the attempted cultural domination of metropolitan secularity. In Northern Ireland, rates of church engagement are highaˆ¦ ‘ pp 17. 2

The engagement of faith is today more evident as force per unit areas started to take a firm stand on the Christianity of Europe in the incorporate fundamental law since the European conference in 2003. This besides appeared in the treatments related to the issues of abortion and learning faith in schools so besides with the expansions and the inclusion of Eastern European states known for their inordinate religionism like Romania, Bulgaria and Poland.

P 17 ; Bruce, Steve, erectile dysfunction. Religion and Modernization: Sociologists and Historians Debate the Secularization Thesis. Oxford: Clarendon, 1992

This subsequently instigated many problems for this intent and supported the current that calls for a Christian Europe with the addition of negotiations about accepting Islamic Turkey into the Union with its really heavy population which in its bend created some frights and concerns about the airing of Islam at the extent of Christianity.

The Ex French president Valery Giscard d’Estaing who presided the conference tried to happen a solution accepted by everyone without impacting the stable secular roof particularly with the Gallic insisting on the rule of secularism. He really suggested three norms included in article 51 related to the churches and spiritual organisations:

The European Union should esteem the place of churches, organisations and bing spiritual groups inside the member provinces.

The European Union should esteem the place of organisations with philosophical beliefs.

The European Union should be committed to open a broad, honest and organized duologue with churches and organisations, in acknowledgment to their individuality and engagement.

Despite the medium solutions that contrast with secularism, looking at the job proves a particular characteristic and being of faith, irrespective of its prejudice to Christianity, it does in fact contradict the article included in the ‘constitution’3 related to the freedom of look and spiritual beliefs which permits the freedom of beliefs without biass or favorism.

The prejudice to Christianity is nevertheless clear in the direct indicating out to the Christian faith and church members without adverting other spiritual establishments. All the articles and norms mention peculiarly the word Church alternatively of spiritual establishments add to that the fact that opening a duologue with the church means implicitly acknowledging its function in the issues and affairs of the Union.

See Treaty set uping a Fundamental law for Europe, Official Journal of the European Union, C 310, Volume 47, 16.12.2004. ( HTML/PDF ) or travel to http: //

3. The Truth of European secularism

Despite the uninterrupted European insisting on the rule of secularism, the existent and concrete world proves the strong being of the Christian background even in public infinites that is supposed to be far from faith harmonizing to the secular text that means the complete split between faith and the province a ground why Turkey is refused integrating into the EU.

Another contradiction is that although the ‘Turkish Constitution’4 dictates the secularity of the province, many states among the EU blames it for what they call an uncomplete committedness to the rules of secularism. They blame Turkey for learning spiritual classs at schools and doing it obligatory and besides for paying the instructors from the authorities budget. They besides accuse Turkey of non esteeming the rights of minorities and know aparting between them on a spiritual footing prefering the ‘Sunnah ‘ to the other minorities and favoring some cultural and political rights of some minorities to the others like Orthodox, Catholics and Armens.

The other contradiction is that this happens elsewhere in many of the European states that claim secularism. Italy for illustration, insists on learning Christianity in the public schools and hire priests from the churches to learn Christianity and acquire paid from the authorities. While depicting Italy, L. Mariotti wrote in his book Italy: Past and Present ‘From the Earliest period of Christianity, [ until todayaˆ¦ . ] Italy seemed to be designed to be its main place, its grand metropolisaˆ¦ ‘ P 34. 5. Besides, the sate allows people to pay some of the revenue enhancements to the churches and present some subsidies to assist them construct new churches and spiritual topographic points. Italy besides allows schools to acquire financess and subsidies. The church matrimonies in their bend are more well-thought-of than the civil 1s.

In England every bit good, the queen is considered the caput of the church, ‘she besides supports inter-faith dealingss, frequently run intoing with leaders of other faiths, and allowing her personal backing to the HYPERLINK “ hypertext transfer protocol: // ” Council of Christians and Jews and is considered as Defender

see portion I article II, c1 of the Turkish Fundamental law at

hypertext transfer protocol: // # 2.1

Mariotti, A L. Italy Past and Present. London: Oxford University, 1994

of the Faith’6. The queen has many exceeding privileges apart from the revenue enhancement exonerations. It is a fact that 26 members of the board of Godheads in UK are priests from churches. The same thing applies to Denmark whose parliament includes a figure of priests from the church and are nominated by a curate called curate of church personal businesss.

What is more is that secular parties in most Europe do non oppose the Pope ‘s understandings between the church and the province, particularly the Vatican. These understandings normally give a specific place to the faith in the province via legal texts. In February of the twelvemonth 1984, Italy signed an understanding with the Vatican that gives a specific value to the spiritual civilization and takes into consideration the Catholic rules which is so a portion of the ‘historical patrimony ‘ of the Italian peoples. In an article entitled ‘Religion in Italian Schools: how it is taught, and to Whom? ‘ , we read ‘The Italian Republic, acknowledging the value of spiritual civilization, and maintaining in head that the rules of Catholicism are portion of the historic patrimony of the Italian people, will go on to guarantee, among the broader ends of instruction, the instruction of the Catholic faith in all public schools below university degree. Respecting the freedom of scruples and educational duty of parents, everyone is guaranteed the right to take whether or non to take advantage of such instruction. When inscribing, pupils or their parents can exert this right, upon petition of the school governments and their pick may non give rise to any signifier of favoritism. ‘ 7.

What is more is that when some disagreed and opposed this look, the high tribunal rejected the entreaty and emphasized its recognition of the understanding.

The same thing happened in Spain. Despite the jurisprudence that appeared in 1980 that stresses the freedom of faiths and equality of the different spiritual religious orders, the province nevertheless allowed itself to do ‘agreements and relationships with Churches ‘ 8, in add-on to supplying them with fiscal support that was declared on a text of jurisprudence under what is called Not For Net income entities with charitable intents.

See hypertext transfer protocol: // # Religion

See hypertext transfer protocol: //

See faith in Spain in Livingstone, E. A. The Concise Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church. London:

Oxford University Press, 2006.

Now In Greece, a really good illustration of beliing with secularism, the province declares a ‘direct relationship between the province and the church’9, even after the democratic passage in the twelvemonth 1975, for the spiritual establishment exist with a legal text and under the jurisprudence. Many patterns and spiritual treaties take the signifier of a legal affair like spiritual matrimonies that is recognized by the jurisprudence. Besides, Greece is he merely state that still refuses to hold Islamic mosques built on its lands.

The state of affairs may differ a spot in Eastern Europe that was under the regulation of communist government systems which limited the function of churches and nationalized its ownerships and belongingss. However, instantly after the autumn of communism, the church in fact restored its belongingss and its place in society. Poland here might be the best illustration we can exemplify with in this instance for it is clear the really of import function that the church played in subverting the Communist government and get downing to kick off a new government with a Catholic Pope understanding and the Vatican signed in 1995 by the parliament, and when Poland was obliged to lawfully separate between the province and the church in order to be able to fall in the European Union, Poland insisted on continuing its Christian individuality through the name ‘secular province with a Christian patrimony ‘ .

4. The place of the Vatican

The yearning for Christian individuality of the united Europe was non nevertheless sought merely by the member provinces but there has besides been the power of the Vatican, the biggest and strongest spiritual establishment in Europe and which put a batch of force per unit areas and lobbied against the political leadings and determination shapers in the provinces and their representatives in the European Union to emphasize the ‘Christian individuality in the constitution’.10

Before the confirmation of the Maastricht Agreement in 1979, the Vatican suggested an thought to be added to the articles related to the rights and the general freedoms which is to advert in the fundamental law that Christianity is the Christian cultural patrimony of European peoples. This recommendation was garbage with the statement that the Vatican is

9. ibid

10. No better history of this extremism can be like Michael Barkun ‘s Religion and the Racist Right: The Origins of the Christian Identity Movement which examines the beginnings and political orientation of the alleged Christian Identity Movement.

non a member of the European Union ; yet, merely before the Amsterdam conference of the same twelvemonth Italy, Germany and Portugal adopted this suggestion and therefore the Vatican practiced its force per unit areas on representatives of the member provinces until he succeeded in following the article figure 11 that stipulates the savings and the privileges that churches and spiritual communities should hold without the intercession of any provinces. Therefore, with this confirmation all the member provinces became obliged to stay with these privileges although this contradicts with secularism. Pressures and buttonholing continued with the start of negotiations and treatments of the fundamental law undertaking in order to modify and add in the article 11 some words that are to continue the of import function of the church through naming the Union to get down honest and clear duologues and in a changeless mode with the churches and spiritual organisations.

In Chapter III named ‘The Vatican Power ‘ Avro Manhattan goes far in his immense good documented book ‘The Vatican in World Politics ‘ and says that ” [ … . ] the diplomatic machinery of the Vatican would be of small value if the Pope had to trust upon it entirely. What gives the Vatican its enormous power is non its diplomatic negotiations as such, but the fact that behind its diplomatic negotiations stands the Church, with all its multiplex world-embracing activities. The Vatican as a diplomatic Centre is but one facet of the Catholic Church. Vatican diplomatic negotiations is so influential and can exercise such great power in the diplomatic-political field because it has at its disposal the enormous machinery of a religious organisation with branchings in every state of the planet. In other words, the Vatican, as a political power, employs the Catholic Church as a spiritual establishment to help the attainment of its ends. ‘ P 28. 11

It is deserving adverting besides that before the conference related to the hereafter of Europe was held, the Catholic academy in Berlin organized a meeting to discourse the Christian societal duties which gathered 100s of personalities from 20 different European provinces. Among the recommendations was calls for presentations in the winter of 2004 that should be unfastened to all those who are interested in the Christian message that the civil

11. See page 28 on Manhattan, A. The Vatican In World Politics. London: C.A. Watts & A ; Co. , Limited

Gaer Associations, Inc, 1949.

society should establish itself upon. The meeting stressed the importance of the European Union as a federal Union that encourages connexions and cooperation which is a rule that allows churches to pattern and play their functions without any hurdlings from the province.

The other contention is hat these meetings and assemblages were welcomed by the establishments of the Union whose parliament supported and financed indirectly these meetings.

In a parliament meeting dated October tenth 2004 related to the budget position of 2005, Salvador Garriga Polledo the Spanish politician and Member of the European Parliament with the PeopleHYPERLINK “ hypertext transfer protocol: //’s_Party_ ( Spain ) ” ‘HYPERLINK “ hypertext transfer protocol: //’s_Party_ ( Spain ) ” s Party, portion of the European PeopleHYPERLINK “ hypertext transfer protocol: //’s_Party ” ‘HYPERLINK “ hypertext transfer protocol: //’s_Party ” s Party and sits on the European Parliament ‘s Committee on Budgets and besides a replacement for the Committee on Budgetary Control and the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, Polledo suggested an accommodation which consists of reassigning a million and a half Euros to finance the international Youth Day reasoning that it is the twenty-four hours that gathers all European young person to name for values of justness, freedom and coexistence, without adverting of class the truth of this assemblage and that it was the German Catholic Church which was behind forming this event and that they invited more than four 1000 journalists to air the words of the Pope of Vatican which he was traveling to present in forepart of eight 1000s Catholic childs. His words in fact contained some sermon that mention the Christian roots of Europe aˆ¦and others related to Peace.

For this ground, the caput of the Catholic Church does non oppose the calls of both Catholics and Orthodox to unite to support their Christian heritage. In February 2003, John Paul II delivered a preach at the Saint-Siege Church in the Vatican in forepart of the Catholic politicians where he urged them to contend in order to maintain the word of ‘god ‘ in the fundamental law ; he besides urged them to unite with their Orthodox brothers. A few Dayss after that call, the president of the apostolic board asked to run into with representatives of the Orthodox Church.

It is clear so that the Vatican with its uninterrupted force per unit areas was able to unite all the right and left parties in Italy to name their representatives in the Union to advert the look ‘the Christian Patrimony ‘ in the fundamental law. This was parallel to many actions led by bishops and archbishops and secretary of the Vatican province to set many more force per unit areas on the remainder of the European Politicians.

5. Why Turkey Merely? !

One can non understand the insisting on the Christian individuality without the strong dissent and dissension about Turkey ‘s fall ining the European Union for all the statements and proofs show that the chief ground behind non accepting Turkey is for her being Islamic otherwise Turkey has all the necessary potencies and establishments to suit in the EU.

As a affair of fact, Turkey is one of the establishing provinces of the European council and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in 1995. Turkey is besides one of the pillars of the NATO and holds the biggest military after the US, this means that Turkey has the biggest Military in the western European Union that constitutes now a critical constituent of the European Military. It is non possible neither to deny Turkey ‘s function in protecting Europe from the Eastern confederations during the cold war for it was the state that shared frontiers with Russia and so played a critical function in forestalling Russia ‘s Military incursions and foraies in the European lands. Turkey did every bit the same in facing the Russian maritime presence in the black sea.

Turkey has no uncertainty an economic importance every bit good for Europe. It represents a large and new market and a gate for large European expected economic expansions in the Middle East, Central Asia and the Caucasus. Through this Europe could command ways of conveyances of the Hydrocarbons, Oil and Gas from Iraq, Russia and Iran. It has besides huge H2O resources in the clip of expected wars on Waterss. There are besides many political frights that Turkey will turn its dorsum to Europe and travel alternatively towards Asia and the Middle East particularly Iran which would intend stressing its Islamic belonging and therefore for Europe the ‘Danger ‘ of the being of a strong Islamic state on the frontiers of Europe.

It is clear so that despite all these ‘qualifications ‘ the right wing Christian parties in Europe insist to decline the thought of Turkey fall ining the EU, which we can infer now is because of the will to maintain Europe unified with a Christian civilisation and which would be threatened if Turkey with its 70 million dwellers fall in the EU.

These frights and concerns are besides explained by the fact that if Turkey joins the EU, this would take to a large demographic transmutation. Searching in the cyberspace today one could easy happen some propaganda movies and docudramas about Muslim demographics and how in-migration threatens the European being, and as a affair of fact since 1990, 90 % of in-migration towards Europe has been ‘Islamic in-migration ‘ 12 ; and while in France it is a 1.8 kids per household, Muslims 8.1 per household which are non really plausible statistics. Claims that in some parts of European metropoliss there are more mosques than churches are besides non plausible. However the German authorities for illustration decided to speak publically about this affair and said that while now there 52 1000000s Muslims in Europe, it will duplicate in merely 20 old ages. All this is considered to be an obstruction to the Christian Club.

Some of the opposing European states present many statements from the past history of Turkey particularly human rights, and racial cultural minorities like the Armenian race murder in 1915, the persecution of Christians in 1955 and the invasion of Cyprus in 1973. So this resort to history is an statement to legalize their frights. However, what is certain besides is that these sorts of offenses and errors happened besides in most of European states.

Some of these statements might be true but these misdemeanors can besides use to many of the states that joined the EU particularly those related to public and general freedoms and rights particularly the Easter European states like Slovenia and Estonia and may be even some of western European states besides like Spain with the worse human rights records in go againsting minorities and immigrants rights with the most atrocious ways like

12. See http: // v=6-3X5hIFXYU

hiting them, tormenting them and mortifying them.

It is clear therefore that the EU has a particular and a systematic scheme to marginalising Turkey ‘s campaigning to fall in the EU. In his Turkey and the EU: An Awkward Candidate for EU Membership, Arikan Harun wrote ‘aˆ¦In fact, the EU has developed an alternate attack towards Turkey, which can outdo be described as a containment scheme, designed to detain indefinitely the chance of rank while grounding Turkey in the European construction through a close relationsaˆ¦ … on the other manus [ indicating out ] to Turkey ‘s failure to set about the necessary policy reforms to run into demands for EU rank which has enabled the EU to legalize its difficult policy stance towards Turkey ‘s rank. ‘ P 2. 13

6. Decision

The connection Turkey to the European Union poses more inquiries and debatable on the impression of Europeanization and Europeness which should as said the European Deputy in the European parliament, a peace undertaking that should non be limited to the western Christian patrimony for the connection of Turkey will profit Europe to a great extent.

The definition of Europe through its Christian heritage or the Enlightenment epoch is non really converting for there are no nonsubjective standards that could specify one ‘s hereafter and individuality. So what is so Europe? It is what we want it to be through a subjective significance of human rights and democracy which is in fact unsustainable since we have witnessed a war which is non really far n clip, that of former Yugoslavia and besides through the deduction of many European states with the CIA in nobbling people and directing them to Guantanamo. The strategic importance of Europe in Central Asia and Middle East is clear and critical and so it is for the universe. The challenge in my position will shortly ever be that uninterrupted clang and dialectic between the regional and the planetary. The hereafter entirely will find which path the White continent will take.

13. Arikan, H. Turkey and the EU: An Awkward Candidate for EU Membership. Ashgate Publishing, 2006.

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