Perspectives on Freedom of Conscience and Religion in the Jurispredence of Constitutional Courts

By Garlicki, Leszek Lech | Brigham Young University Law Review, January 1, 2001 | Go to article overview

Perspectives on Freedom of Conscience and Religion in the Jurispredence of Constitutional Courts


Garlicki, Leszek Lech, Brigham Young University Law Review


This article1 attempts to summarize national reports on various aspects of religious freedom. Following a brief introduction in Part I, Part II outlines the approaches of constitutions and constitutional jurisprudence to determine relations between church and state. Part III addresses the ways of understanding the principle of freedom of religion, followed by Part IV which presents various principles of equality in reference to the position of churches and religious groups. Part V outlines the forms of cooperation between church and state, focusing in particular on education and religion teaching.

This article is based on information and reports concerning the case law of constitutional courts in several European countries, including Austria, Belgium, Belarus, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, the Federal German Republic, France, Hungary, Italy, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Macedonia, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland, and Turkey.

I. INTRODUCTION

A discussion of freedom of religion requires consideration of relations between churches and the state. Modern Christian societies now generally accept various versions of separation of church and state (mutual autonomy), acknowledging a distinction of domains belonging to each of them. But it is worthwhile to emphasize that, as indicated by Samuel Krislov,2 separation of church and state is mostly found in the doctrine of Western civilization and the great religions of the world adopt various concepts of church-state relations. Judaism was originally linked with the state, and only historical events caused the eventual separation. The rebirth of the State of Israel allowed a return to tradition, and today an interesting symbiosis of religion and state is observed. Christianity originated as a religion separated from its antagonist, the state. Later links developed between Christian churches and various nations, which were understood differently under Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant traditions. By contrast, Islam, from its very origins, has been aligned with the state; in this tradition, the identity of religion and government has always been one of Islam's fundamental features.3

From the European perspective, the Christian tradition is of fundamental significance.4 Therefore, most European constitutions and jurisprudence assume a predominantly Christian audience since other religions have always been in the minority.

Even assuming this largely Christian audience, individual European nations have adopted vastly different schemes, which flow from their different histories and traditions. Consequently, along with traditionally Protestant states (e.g., Great Britain and the Scandinavian countries) and traditionally Catholic states (e.g., Austria, France, Spain, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Slovenia, Poland, Portugal, and Italy), there are European countries of mixed religious structure (e.g., Germany and Switzerland).5 Historically speaking, almost all countries formerly had a state church, and the political elite were more interested in establishing and maintaining religious peace than ensuring religious equality. In countries where historical development focused on evolution rather than revolution, there may still be found a very close linkage between a dominant religion and the state, namely Scandinavian countries and the Anglican Church in England. However, in a majority of Continental countries, the official relationship between church and state eventually broke down. This separation of church and state is not meant to result in a lack of assistance or cooperation by the state to churches and does not foreclose the existence of some churches remaining closer to the state than other religious organizations or groups.6

It is a self-evident truth that religious freedom-both for an individual and for an institution-should be considered as a primary element of the more general principle of freedom based on pluralism and the protection of the minority. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Perspectives on Freedom of Conscience and Religion in the Jurispredence of Constitutional Courts
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.