Separation of Mosque and State in Islam?

altahrir, news of Islam, Muslims, Arab Spring and special Palestine

Blue Mosque in Istanbul, Sea of Marmara in background

By Abu Amina Elias for


Some people say Islam requires theocratic government which tends to undermine progress and promote intolerance, so Muslims need to adopt secularism, or “the separation of mosque and state,” in order to progress in the modern world. Is it true?


In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

The call for secularism in the Muslim world stems from a misunderstanding of Islam’s traditional relationship to government and the assumption that Western secular models are appropriate for Muslim countries.

Secularism originated in the West as a reaction to the internecine wars of religion in Europe. Europe developed theocratic governments in which the religious and political institutions were one and the same, thereby corrupting the purity of religious practice. Religion was politicized and this led to fanatical intolerance and persecution for which it was deemed necessary to forcibly separate “the church” and the state.

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