Lecture in Paris: In one sentence, religion is a private matter, and must be separate from politics and society.
Dear Mr. Chairman, Ladies and Gentlemen. I would like to thank you for the opportunity I was granted to speak at this occasion.
I am Bahram Abar, the Chairman for the secular-democratic party of Iran, founded five years ago in Germany.
I strongly believe in secular democracy – a complete separation of religion and the government in every respect.
This is very important for development of free thinking and democratic form of governance in any society. In short; the prerequisite for freedom; Democracy and prosperity in any society is secularism. The belief in secularism is not hostility or restrictions on religions, it is a private matter for citizens.
With today’s views on human rights, the inconsistency of religious and ideological constraints and extremist phenomena in many countries of the world, especially in Islamic societies, creates countless problems for the people and the progress towards democratization. The interventions and influence of religions in the civil and constitutional laws of the states lead to small groups in the name of God, to behave in despotic and aggressive manner, abusing the power against a silent majority who desire to live and work in freedom and peace.
In this regard, Europe has a long and bitter empiricism. Following thousand years of absolute tyranny and dictatorship of the church and religion, societies have realized the value of separation of religion and state. It was not until the fifteenth century that the Reformation and the cultural movement, followed by the Renaissance, brought about a change in the development of science and education. This began a 300-year transformation from the Middle Ages, which began in Italy and ended in the UK. The revolutions of 1624 and 1688 for the British people resulted in the preservation of a “constitution” in which the parliament was designated as the basis for laws, and not the religions. The right for the freedom of expression and the right to vote were confirmed, and the last word was the voice of people through Parliament. Even without parliamentary approval, the king’s orders were regarded as unreasonable. As a result of bourgeois democracy, a political, social and economic development were urbanized in Britain. English verbal liberal democracy gradually became popular in Europe.
Gradually, democracy and secularism in Europe were naturalized in order to restrict the authoritarian laws of religion and to distance themselves from it. Since then, secularism has ensured the separation of social issues such as government, politics, civilization, economics, and science from the spiritual themes of ideology and religion. This thought regulated religion and ideologies as part of the personal affairs of the societies. Their interference of religion in the civil rights, political, economic and civil laws of societies, have become obsolete. It must be emphasized further that all religions and their followers are respectfully and treated equally by law. This commandment was institutionalized in Europe and the United States.
Forty years ago, the citizens of Iran were deceived by Khomeini and his gang by establishing a religious dictatorship, under the name of Islamic Republic. The mullahs’ medieval regime led the Iranian people into total chaos amidst religious illusions, superstitions, and false revelations based on the laws of religion. In the name of God, his prophet and descendants, became national hero, and public properties; Forests, mountains and everything they valued were looted under the name of God! The private wealth of citizens plundered in the banks and pension funds. Through the arrests and murder of opponents of the regime, and the wars in neighbouring countries, many citizens lost their wealth and their lives. Money laundering and fraud has become public affair. The horrendous devaluation of money used has made many families go hungry. Now, the Iranian people have recognized the loopholes of the religious regime and have decided to change the state power and its form of government, and to stop the participation of religious guards and their corrupt power apparatus in government and the people’s affair. Through the total corruption, misdeeds, repressions and executions exercised by the mullahs’ regime, in the majority of Iranian society demand a secular democracy.
Since 2018, the Iranian people have been demonstrating courageously and fearlessly in the streets all over the country, protesting against the systematic looting of Iran, and the inhumane behaviour of the regime by mullahs. The protesters shouted slogans like:
• Our enemy is here / not in America.
• Not Gaza, not Lebanon / My life belongs to Iran.
• Leave Syria / Worry about us.
• Stop the embezzlement / solve our problems.
• Down with the dictator.
• Down with Khameneii
The misanthropic behaviour of the regime, its police force and the Revolutionary Guards, with daily suppression of its own citizens, and executions of political prisoners have become the order of the day. Discrimination against minorities and the persecution of homosexuals has been the norm during the past 40 years. In addition, the regime is promoting terrorism and anti-Semitism worldwide.
The prerequisite for the establishment of freedom and democracy, and respect for human rights is implementation of the secularity in Iran. By realizing these facts, in the future a humane society can be established in the country, for the people to flourish in peace, friendship and harmony, which will create a much better life for the citizen.
Despite the strong resistance of the mullah’s regime, it is very opportune time for the society to adopt a secular democracy in Iran and the abolition of the Islamic Republic. In one sentence, religion is a private matter, and must be separate from politics and society.
Dr. Bahram Abar