WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE A ‘LEGAL RELIGION’ OR AN ‘ILLEGAL RELIGION’?

Opinion by Ruby Chingu

I woke up this morning to a very interesting newspiece. Not sure if the news has been confirmed to be true or not but it is all around the internet.

http://guardianlv.com/2013/11/islam-banned-in-angola/

My friend posted in Facebook this news article on how Islam is now banned in Angola. It is a religion practiced by a very small percentage in the country. Not sure how a religion can be banned through the correct process of law but somehow it did, or at least the Government made their intentions clear. But their Constitution guaranteed the fundamental right to freedom of religion. Surely, this shall include the freedom to practice Islam.

Being a proponent to secularism in the context of public governance, I disagree with the banning. Yes, I am a Muslim and of course my sentiments could be a little biased. However, even talking from the point of view of a secularist, the banning for one to choose and practice their own conscience is considered wrong. Of course people would argue that certain extremists of any religion would go to the extreme and harm other people. That is true. Then punish those extremists and not the average citizens who are just trying to live their lives.

How does one ban a conscience? How does one actually legalize a conscience? Or maybe the conscience is beyond the law?

We can never dictate on how one’s mind shall work. Notwithstanding the passing of any law, people will believe what their hearts want to believe. We can never impose to other people that what we believe is right, for what we believe may be right to us but wrong to others. Each are given their own unique experiences. And how they shall deal with those unique experiences should be up their own choice.

*this short opinion is too serious of a topic for me this morning, considering I have yet to have my morning coffee. Gaaah!! Where the fuck did I put my Starbucks card??*

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