Skip to main content
Article
Bias and Religious Truth-Seeking in Proselytization Restrictions: An Atypical Case Study of Singapore
Asian Journal of Comparative Law (2013)
  • Jianlin Chen, University of Hong Kong
Abstract

Proselytisation restrictions are typically subjected to two objections. First, these restrictions curtail religious liberty and impede religious truth-seeking. Second, these restrictions tend to favour politically dominant religions and discriminate against minority religions. The restrictions on offensive religious propagation in Singapore thus present an interesting departure in which sanctioned religions are not politically marginalised religions, whereas protected religions include numerical minority religions that are socially, economically, and politically disadvantaged. This article utilises the atypical case study of Singapore to highlight the limitations of the two typical objections toward proselytisation restrictions. In particular, the emphasis on religious truth-seeking underpinning these objections is premised upon a distinct set of religious worldviews not shared by the majority of religions in Singapore. This article posits that if religious truthseeking is no longer the accepted normative goal, then there may be circumstances in which some limited and even-handed restrictions on offensive religious propagation are sufficiently justified on the grounds of social peace and harmony.

Keywords
  • proselytization restrictions,
  • Singapore,
  • law and religion,
  • offensive speech,
  • religious harmony
Publication Date
2013
Citation Information
Jianlin Chen. "Bias and Religious Truth-Seeking in Proselytization Restrictions: An Atypical Case Study of Singapore" Asian Journal of Comparative Law Vol. 8 (2013)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/jianlin_chen/16/