Constitutionalism and Religion

Constitutionalism and Religion

Elgar Monographs in Constitutional and Administrative Law series

Francois Venter

This topical book examines how the goals of constitutionalism – good and fair government – are addressed at a time when the multi-religious composition of countries’ populations has never before been so pronounced.

Chapter 9: A post-secular approach to religious pluralism

Francois Venter

Subjects: law - academic, constitutional and administrative law, law and society, legal philosophy


In this concluding chapter consideration is given to the possible benefits of employing constitutionalism as it is characterized in Chapter 3 above for dealing with religious pluralism against the background of the expositions and analyses of all the previous chapters. There is a problem in this regard, on the nature of which it is necessary to reflect. Whether or not constitutionalism provides the solution must first be asked, followed by the identification of the shortcomings of common notions regarding constitutionalism. Finally an approach that may provide a foundation for an escape from the barrenness of secularist solutions will be suggested. Human society is complex – a truism that is easily set aside due to the impossibility of comprehending the full or even the partial extent of the complexity. The limitations of the human mind necessitate that in any systematic investigation of reality – scientific, scholarly, educational, or simply for the purposes of making sense of one's place in life – it is necessary to break down one's observations into fractions small enough to be dealt with intellectually and emotionally. This brings about the need in scholarship and science to specialize, to limit one's focus to a field that is manageable within the rigour of a specific discipline.

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