Press Release of the FNLP (National Freethought Federation, France)

Declaration of the Great Mosque of Paris about Islam in France

It does no harm just this once, but we have to welcome the position of Dalil Boubakeur, chief of the Great Mosque of Paris, who made public two declarations about Islam in France and the place of women in Islam.

First of all, the Mosque of Paris breaks with the offensive of previous governments, whatever their political trends, right-wing or left-wing, are : He claims for Islam IN France and not Islam OF France. Relying on the tradition of the national Algerian movement, he asks for the strict application of the law of the Separation between Churches and State of the 9th December 1905.

Islam OF France, it is the concordat plus the colonial status of native. Religion does not have to be national and governmental. Islam IN France, it is the application of secularism which separates religious from civil.

The Mosque of Paris “condemns the current trend which wants to designate supervision authorities, not of Muslim faith, in order to supervise with paternalism the expression of Muslim religious fact in the French society” we would not have said better.

“14. France is not a country of Islam : it is a country where many religions , of which Islam, coexist, as well as inhabitants who are atheist or agnostic. In this context, every Muslim must of course respect the values and the laws of the French Republic. For example, since blasphemy and religious caricatures are authorized by the French law, we can be hurt or offended, but we must neither demand their banning nor react by violence. More widely, of course, no Muslim has the right to require that France modifies its values and its laws in order to match with his own faith, as well as no Christian, no Jew, no atheist, no agnostic, has this right.

15. According to the 1905 law, secularism is a principle of impartiality of the State, the Administration, public services and civil servants, as far as religion and spirituality are concerned. In other words, the French Republic does not finance any cult, does not accept any request coming from a cult, does not interfere with the life of a cult, and only gives to religious communities the same rights and the same duties that to any other association of the country, religious or not. (Except that The French Republic only recognizes citizens and not communities. Note of the Free Thought.) This definition thus reminded, the existence of the Muslim religious fact in the French society matches with secularism.

16. Secularism is not a principle of intolerance towards the expression of the religious fact in the public space. Those who want to redefine it this way make a mistake or seriously misread the 1905 law.”

Here to, it is perfectly right with regard to a conception of freedom and secularism.

This declaration raises other problems too:

“10. Allah created humanity; There is no contradiction between the creation of Humanity according to the holy Koran, which metaphorically reveals that Adam was moulded from the earth and current scientific and most advanced theories, according to which Humanity was moulded over the years of the successive evolution of species of the Earth.

11. Allah created Humanity and wanted it to be brotherly. Every Muslim must therefore campaigns for fraternity and against racism, for speeches of harmony and against speeches of hate.”

We would have “wished” such a declaration against creationism from the Vatican. And it is totally opposite to the declaration of Benoit XVI In Ratisbonne on the relations between religions.

The question of the place of woman and contraception is also raised.

“3. It is reminded that in Islam, every adult woman is sovereign on the inheritance she receives, on the incomes of her work and of the incomes of her savings. No one can decide in her place of what she does with them, not even, should the case arise, her husband.

7. It is reminded that nothing in Islam forbids the use of contraceptives. In the same way, nothing in Islam forbids the termination of pregnancy ; particularly when the pregnant woman’s life is in danger. It is however preferable to avoid arriving to the termination of pregnancy. It is what allows the use of contraceptives.”

Categories: Miscellany