100 Examples of Lay States

It is known as Secular state to those countries whose form of government is independent of any religious organization, in such a way that the decisions of politicians will not be linked to any religious order other than their own decisions or those of their party. For instance: South Korea, Syria, Venezuela, Slovenia.

The definition The strict rule of secular states leaves very few countries within the group, since it reserves the presence for those who do not have any kind of inference in any of the public powers.

For many people, the secularism of the state is a principle of concord between the different human beings that inhabit the country, which is based on what unites them and not on what separates them.

The principle of neutrality of the State with respect to the different individual conscience options presumes the existence of different creeds within a country and guarantees normal coexistence, which is a very strong and favorable position for freedom of conscience, equal rights and the universality of public action.

Examples of lay states

NicaraguaDemocratic Republic of CongoNamibia
MexicoPortugalCzech Republic
LiberiaBosnia and HerzegovinaGuinea-Bissau
South AfricaSouth KoreaEquatorial Guinea
United States of AmericaGuyanaSyria
Russian FederationJamaicaSlovakia
IndonesiaNew ZealandSenegal
AndorraFederated States of MicronesiaAruba
BotswanaBrazilPuerto Rico
Suriname FlagBulgariaLithuania
GeorgiaCape VerdeCuba
The SaviorLaosNorth Korea
EthiopiaPeruSolomon Islands
NetherlandsItalySao Tome and Principe
TajikistanTrinidad and TobagoBurkina faso
AustraliaPeople’s Republic of ChinaAustria
GuineaBoliviaRepublic of Macedonia
FranceSerbiaHong Kong

Characteristics of these states

However, it is common for total separation between religious institutions and the State is not fulfilled for almost any country. Then, certain conditions are established that a State must meet to be considered secular, even when it may have an official religion:

  • People who do not ascribe to the religion of the State should not respond for mandates that they do not respect, being able to count on a legislation that is not believing in the legal framework.
  • Education must be based on equality, and it is essential that students are not trained in the values ​​of any religion. In any case, religious education will be optional and will not be the case in public schools.
  • The State should not use religious symbols, in such a way as to separate government activity from all existing rites and religions.
  • The festive dates should not be dates related to religion, but to important events for the territory due to historical events that occurred there.

Confessional (non-secular) states

The opposite of secular states is the group of Confessional states, those who adhere to a specific religion called official. Confessional states can be the product of the customs and customs of a nation, or of established legislation.

In the same way as in the case of the laity, there are different shades Among the confessional countries, the most extreme in the world being those that adopt a religion as the ideological foundation for all their political institutions, called theocracies, where government heads coincide with religious leaders. In this group are the Vatican City, Iran, Saudi Arabia.

In this way, more than two categories, there are many nuances in the level of ascription to a religion that a State may have. The following list includes some of the countries that formally comply with all the characteristics of a secular state.