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Islam and Secularization

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This article looks at the relationship of the religious and the secular from a historical perspective. Contrasting historical facts, including a traditional religious consciousness, and the political religious language of recent times, it is shown that there is no natural given boundary separating the two dimensions. Instead, the whole discussion derives from an advanced state of a secular mind. In nineteenth and the twentieth century thought in institutions in the Middle East, for example, in the fields of law, education, administration and mass culture, there was experienced an irreversible process of change towards secularity. This process was facilitated by the co-existence and intersection of the religious and the secular. The dichotomy of the religious and the secular emerged within popularized fundamentalism, which itself has to be seen as a fruit of the secularization process encouraging religion to turn into a matter of politics and "social engineering".


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