Where I show the slipperiness of the term “secularism,” try to explain to secularists why people actually enjoy being religious, and assert that church and state should be separated but can and do work together for the common good!Mainly written for the Aussie context, but relevant for other places too.
Religion is more than dogma and rules. It is a mixture of worldview and praxis that permeates all of peoples’ lives. We should remember that religion has had a prominent place in Australian history, and religious organizations form the backbone of our welfare network. Faith communities and the state can work together for the common good, and religion is an inalienable aspect of human existence, like music, art and literature. What’s more, religion is remarkably robust – it is not going to disappear. So it is far better that we treat religion as indelibly part of human life than as something to be begrudgingly tolerated and excised from public life.