We need to employ a secular approach to ethics, secular in the Indian sense of respecting all religious traditions and even the views of non-believers in an unbiased way. Secular ethics rooted in scientific findings, common experience and common sense can easily be introduced into the secular education system. If we can do that there is a real prospect of making this 21st century an era of peace and compassion.
In contemporary society secular humanism has been singled out by critics and proponents alike as a position sharply distinguishable from any religious formulation. Religious fundamentalists in the United States have waged a campaign against secular humanism, claiming that it is a rival "religion" and seeking to root it out from American public life. Secular humanism is avowedly non-religious. It is a eupraxsophy (good practical wisdom), which draws its basic principles and ethical values from science, ethics, and philosophy.
You say, 'Well, I love secular music.' Let me just share something with you: I don't care. I'm not going to go there; this is what I'm going to tell you: It doesn't matter to me whether it's secular or Christian. My question is, what's being said in those words? Because if what's being said in those words contradicts the will of God, you're violating His will, and you're loving it.
The bloody years of war and all the atrocities in European history have taught the Europeans that secular politics free of religious hatred is mainly a question of peace. This concept is not anchored in the same way in the consciousness of Turks, which has to do with the fact that the secular was forced upon us by the army.
America's founding fathers did not intend to take religion out of education. Many of the nation's greatest universities were founded by evangelists and religious leaders; but many of these have lost the founders concept and become secular institutions. Because of this attitude, secular education is stumbling and floundering.
The Salafists are trying to abort the revolution and make it religious, though the revolution started secular. There was not a single Islamic slogan. It was secular men and women, and in fact, they were unified. Now they want to divide the revolution, and religion is a very strong weapon.
Nawal El Saadawi
I'm not against religion in the sense that I feel I can't tolerate it, but I think written into the rubric of religion is the certainty of its own truth. And since there are 6,000 religions currently on the face of the earth, they can't all be right. And only the secular spirit can guarantee those freedoms and it's the secular spirit that they contest.
We need to find secular ways to cultivate warm-heartedness. We need secular ways to educate ourselves about inner values. The source of a happy life is within us. Trouble makers in many parts of the world are often quite well educated, so it is not just education that we need. We need to pay attention to inner values.
You have to be closer to religious origins -- the generation of the 20's was truly secular in that it still knew its theology and its varieties of religious experience. We are post-secular, inventing new faiths, without any sense of organizing truths. The truths we accept are so multiple that honesty becomes little more than a strategy by which you manage your tendencies toward duplicity.
India was secular even when Muslims hadn't come here and Christians hadn't set foot on this soil. It is not as if India became secular after they came. They came with their own modes of worship, and they, too, were given a place of honor and respect. They had the freedom to worship God as per their wish and inclination.
Atal Bihari Vajpayee
From the outset, Protestantism rejected the critical medieval distinction between the 'sacred' and 'secular' orders. While this position can easily be interpreted as a claim for the desacralization of the sacred, it can equally well be understood as a claim for the sacralization of the secular. As early as 1520, Luther had laid the fundamental conceptual foundations for created sacred space within the secular. His doctrine of the 'priesthood of all believers' asserted that there is no genuine difference of status between the 'spiritual' and the 'temporal' order. All Christians are called to be priests - and can exercise that calling within the everyday world. The idea of 'calling' was fundamentally redefined: no longer was it about being called to serve God by leaving the world; it was now about serving God in the world.
Alister E. McGrath
I will go wherever the truth leads me. It is secular scholarship, Rebbe; it is not the scholarship of tradition. In secular scholarship there are no boundaries and no permanently fixed views.' Lurie, if the Torah cannot go out into your world of scholarship and return stronger, then we are all fools and charlatans. I have faith in the Torah. I am not afraid of truth.
I will go wherever the truth leads me. It is secular scholarship, Rebbe; it is not the scholarship of tradition. In secular scholarship there are no boundaries and no permanently fixed views." Lurie, if the Torah cannot go out into your world of scholarship and return stronger, then we are all fools and charlatans. I have faith in the Torah. I am not afraid of truth.
You grow up and recognise that in an educated, secular society, there's no excuse for ignorance. You have to recognise in yourself, and challenge yourself, that if you see racism or homophobia or misogyny in a secular society, as a member of that society, you should challenge it. You owe it to the betterment of society.
Certainly it's a rare glimpse into the lives of the Secular Ancients. They don't seem as bad as the Dominion histories make them out to be. Though clearly they were imperfect." "I don't deny that they were imperfect, " Julian said in a distant voice. "I'm not uncritical of the Secular Ancients, Adam. They had all sorts of vices, and they committed one sin for which I can never bring myself to entirely forgive them." "What sin is that?" "They evolved into us, " he said.
Robert Charles Wilson
The church is only the church when it exists for others. To make a start, it should give away all its property to those in need. The clergy must live solely on the free-will offerings of their congregations, or possibly engage in some secular calling. The church must share in the secular problems of ordinary human life, not dominating, but helping and serving. It must tell men of every calling what it means to live in Christ, to exist for others.
Based on our badly borrowed misunderstanding of the words 'secular' and 'spiritual' we seem to have become blinded by the dominant intellectual ideology of our times, according to which schools as secular organizations are supposed to not have anything to do with matters of the spirit. Education has, therefore, become concerned only with matters of material life (eventually leading to commodification)... This dichotomy between 'education for social success' and education for spirit' must go if we want to make Indian Education more relevant for the future of India. Education needs to become more integral, more complete through a meaningful synthesis of the two.
Many secular observers and spiritual practitioners alike mistake mystical chanting as a kind of anthropological curiosity or interesting musical diversion from secular mainstream entertainment, sometimes labeling it 'world' or 'folk' music. But uttering or chanting spells, mantras or prayers shouldn't be regarded as a romantic excursion to a distant past, or faraway place, or as an escape from our everyday stresses, for relaxation or entertainment. These sounds are meant to be experienced as the timeless unity of energy currents. The chanting of ancient esoteric sounds enables us to realize we are never separate from the one continuously existing omnipresent vibration of the cosmos.