Model of Kazakhstan's religious tolerance and interfaith dialogue: social philosophical analyze

The article analyzes from a philosophical point of view the ontological, axiological, sociocultural aspects of the formation of a unique Kazakhstan model of religious tolerance and interfaith dialogue. The role and significance of spiritual values of a secular and religious nature as a necessary condition for constructive social transformations are argued. It is proposed to consider the experience of Kazakhstan society on the formation of spiritual harmony as a fundamental condition for sustainable civilizational development. It is noted that at the moment there is a process of searching for ways of mutual understanding and mutual agreement. Thus, it is carried out in a dialogue, and in it - real cognition and understanding. Due to the complexity of the modern multi-polar world, a detailed review of the Kazakhstan model of religious tolerance and interfaith dialogue is proposed through the characterization of the Kazakhstani people. The dialogue itself should be built taking into account the binding conditions leading to understanding and agreement, organically developing into a close and mutually beneficial cooperation in achieving common goals. The dialogue of cultures as a complex sociocultural phenomenon has its own specific nature, its existence implies the mutual interest of the participants in the dialogue. The interdependence of the ideological content, the semantic field of dialogical interaction and the real factors of life. Religion, as a carrier of spiritual and moral ideals and a keeper of cultural traditions, has a high value in the eyes of many modern Kazakhstan people. There is no doubt that compulsory changes in the ideological matrix, the paradigm of consciousness, the categorical system and the methods of reflexive thinking are indisputable. The article notes that in the social life of Kazakhstan spiritual consensus in the public life of Kazakhstan takes place in a historical context. Genuine secularism is defined as a product of civil identity, social creativity of citizens, recognition of religion as a positive component of the social world order.

Over the years of its independence, the Republic of Kazakhstan has formed its own, in many ways unique, secular model of state-confessional relations based on the principles of equality of all citizens before the law and respectful attitude to personal convictions of everyone, regardless of language and attitude to religion. The state created all the necessary political, legal and socio-economic conditions for the development of spiritual culture and traditional religious values of the Kazakh people. This allowed Kazakhstani society to obtain the necessary experience of successfully organizing interfaith and interfaith dialogue and harmony, to maintain stability in the religious sphere, to form the spiritual immunity of the population in relation to any form of manifestation of the ideology of religious radicalism and extremism.

Today, Kazakhstan vividly demonstrates to the world that religion is capable of playing a crucial role in preserving spiritual harmony in society, strengthening national unity based on universal moral values, and various religious faiths can peacefully coexist and develop, achieving complete mutual understanding and mutual respect [1].

In modern Kazakhstan, special relations are established between the state and religions, in which no religion can be recognized as state or obligatory, and state policy is based not on the principles of any dogma, but on the basis of the specific interests of life support and the safety of citizens, society and the state generally.

In Kazakhstan, as a democratic, secular, legal and social state, government decisions are made solely on the basis of the interests of the whole society, and not based on the interests of any religion or its individual followers.

At the same time, Kazakh legislation recognizes the value of the most resolutely and ensures the freedom of conscience of every citizen. Citizens of the country have the right, independently and without coercion, to determine their attitude towards religion or not to associate themselves with a particular religion and live without resorting to religious institutions. The state represented by state bodies and civil servants cannot force citizens to profess or not to practice this or that religion, but it helps to establish mutual consent and respect between citizens practicing religion and not professing it, as well as between different religious associations [2].

Accordinglv, facing the phenomena of a destructive nature, arising from the grounds of religious radicalism and damaging the health, mental and material well-being of citizens, the state should take all neces- sarv measures to eliminate the real threat to the calm and peaceful development of Kazakhstan's societv.

Therefore, one of the main tasks of religious studies is to obtain objective and reliable knowledge about the content of various religious views, helping an educated person to realize free and conscious selfdetermination in the world outlook, spiritual interests and values, learn how to competentlv conduct the world view dialogue, master the art of understanding other people.

The modern model of social development built in Kazakhstan societv determines the dailv meeting of different cultures and intercultural communications on a global scale, therefore the issue of the dialogue of cultures becomes especiallv relevant. A new cultural-temporal epoch is predestined to be the age of dialogue. Extremist challenges on a religious basis put humanitv in the need to find an adequate response to terror and violence, learning not onlv to listen, but also to hear the voices of a foreign culture, another conscience, another religion. The contact of religious and secular culture has been one of the most important «practical» problems of world historv for thousands of vears. In this regard, the analvsis of the dialogue of secular and religious cultures is becoming urgent. But to solve this problem todav is not possible without studving the specifics of the various options and models of their dialogue.

The scientific communitv of Kazakhstan is set a verv specific research goal - the analvsis of social and cultural features of the dialogue between secular and religious culture in a historical context and contempo- rarv realities, taking into account the unique experience of the formation of spiritual harmonv in public life in Kazakhstan.

To achieve this goal it was necessarv to solve the following tasks. First, to understand the nature and essence of the dialogue of cultures and the culture of dialogue in the religious aspect. Secondlv, to analvze the process of the genesis of the dialogue of secular and religious in culture. Thirdlv, to explore the most significant models of the dialogue of secular and religious culture in Eastern and Western civilizations. Fourth, studv the modern Kazakhstan model of religious tolerance and interfaith harmonv.

The theoretical and methodological basis of such research can be the concept of the dialogue of cultures of such scientists as M.M. Bakhtin, V.S. Bibler, A.N. Nvsanbavev, according to which dialogue as a universal phenomenon fixes the constructive side of cultural interaction, is an integrator of cultural integritv, shows the impossibilitv of the existence of culture outside the dialogue. In the context of globalization, characterized bv trends towards cultural unification and cultural exclusion, the dialogue of cultures with its value orientation towards ensuring world order and stabilitv is an important factor in preserving cultural integritv. This is most characteristic of the Eurasian multicultural space, in which ethnic cultures develop models of dialogue, including both universal foundations and their own cultural characteristics.

The dialogue of cultures as a complex sociocultural phenomenon has its own specific nature, its existence implies the mutual interest of the participants in the dialogue. The interdependence of the ideological content, the semantic field of dialogical interaction and the real factors of life are the fundamental characteristics of the dialogue of cultures.

Under conditions of cultural pluralitv, dialogue with its inner idea of equalitv of partners becomes the main balancing force that creates the integritv of the perception of the world, in which anv culture should be heard and understood.

The historv of mankind itself is a historv of communication of people with each other. «The verv existence of man ... is the deepest communication. To be is to communicate», M.M. Bakhtin [3; 312].

V.S. Bibler warned against a primitive understanding of dialogue as different tvpes of dialogue found in human speech that are not related to the idea of dialogue in the framework of the dialogue concept of culture. «In the» dialogue of cultures «it is about the dialogical nature of the truth itself (... beautv, goodness ...), that understanding another person implies mutual understanding of» I-You «as ontologicallv different personalities possessing - actual or potentiallv - different cultures, logic of thinking, different meanings of truth, beautv, good ... A dialogue understood in the idea of culture is not a dialogue of different opinions or ideas, it is alwavs a dialogue of different cultures ...» [4; 299].

Kazakh philosopher A.N. Nvsanbavev noted that in the context of globalization, the dialogue becomes a problem, «not a topic, but a complex and vital problem that, in an interconnected and conflicting world, permeates all spheres of modern life» [5; 3].

In the historical process of the existence of the object under studv, periods of formation of certain stable structures and periods of their reproduction on their own basis should be distinguished, which, along with the functioning of these svstems, also implv processes of their development. This logical component of the studvshould be included in a wider historical context of consideration, which involves not only the reproduction of the system in the present, but also its sources and possible future prospects. The historicism of theoretical thought, ultimately, acts as a necessary condition for the understanding of the multivariance of the historically developing reality [6].

Today, secularism cannot be reduced to anti-religiousness, it is linked to the formation of universal morality, the development of rational ideas, knowledge and their dissemination through diverse social institutions, including religious ones. Secularism suggests that civil society organically includes, along with other institutions, and diverse religious organizations and movements. But at the same time, it also implies a rejection of claims of religious organizations of any type for the approval of their monopoly on morality, education, upbringing, not to mention the claims to power. An ideologically neutral understanding of secularism means the recognition as a value and actual presence in public relations of freedom of belief, freedom of conscience, belief and thought.

Genuine secularism is one of the most important social values, a product of civil self-consciousness, social creativity of citizens. Such an understanding of secularism means the recognition of religion as a positive component of a social world pattern, enabling it to help strengthen the spiritual foundations of social wellbeing and peaceful prosperity in our society.

Many researchers state that modern humanity is in a rather deep spiritual and moral crisis, one of the reasons for which was the secularization of culture, the split of culture into two relatively independent spheres - secular and religious, which often oppose each other. Therefore, one of the most important social, cultural, and political problems facing any modern society striving for sustainable development is the ability to organize a dialogue of these cultures [7].

Religion, as a carrier of spiritual and moral ideals and a keeper of cultural traditions, has a high value in the eyes of many modern Kazakhstan people. In this regard, the power of religious ethics is increasingly being used to form the moral and spiritual world of the younger generation. Religious principles of traditional religions influence how many generations of people raised their children, buried the dead, worked, wrote books, and created great works of art. In other words, traditional religions have become an integral part of culture and public life.

President N.A. Nazarbayev, in his speech at the II Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions, noted that for thousands of years cultures based on faith had preserved their living word in history, and in a certain sense, preserving their religious spirit is the key to preserving the history of entire nations. It is not by chance that it was Kazakhstan that became an example of interfaith harmony for the whole world. The centuries-old experience of peaceful coexistence of Islam and Christianity, first of all, Orthodoxy, became evidence of the brotherhood of the Kazakh, Russian and other peoples inhabiting our republic. Each religion in its own language brings to people human values, establishes the norms of behavior in society, acts as a custodian of the centuries-old spiritual values of peoples [8].

Today, Kazakhstan is undoubtedly a leader in promoting the ideas of the dialogue of secular and religious culture. The experience of this dialogue in our country has received recognition and support from political and religious leaders around the world. By its practical deeds, the Republic demonstrates that agreement between peoples and religions, between secular and religious ideological positions is quite achievable. Thanks to the policy of President Nursultan Nazarbayev, the state has managed to build its own model of peaceful residence of various ethnic groups and denominations.

Muslims and Orthodox, Catholics and Protestants, Buddhists and Jews - all respect each other. After all, every person has the right to choose their religious views, while not infringing upon the rights of other citizens. That is why Kazakhstan already held five congresses of leaders of world and traditional religions (the sixth is scheduled for October 2018), during which spiritual hierarchs of various countries and peoples reaffirmed their desire for a unified civilization that would be based on generally accepted values of tolerance and freedom, for dialogue different cultures and religions.

The secularism of the Kazakh state is the guarantor of the further development and modernization of these relations. The spread of spiritlessness and the radicalization of religious beliefs should not be allowed in Kazakhstan. The secular state implies respect and tolerance for the diversity of religions, encourages the creation of a secular type of humanism in society, forms a secular citizen, a patriot of his country who loves his homeland and does not exclude the position of strengthening the national culture and religions traditional for the state. The formation of a secular type of humanism will in turn influence the formation of a new type of religious culture that does not exclude interreligious tolerance and at the same time preserves the national identity of the country.

The model of relations between the state and religious associations in our republic is based on democratic principles of respect for human rights and freedoms, a balance of public and religious interests, partnership relations and the desire for mutual understanding.

Kazakhstan is a good example of how people of different faiths live in peace and harmony. Such diversity testifies to the respectful attitude of the state towards religious freedom, the preservation of the atmosphere of tolerance and tolerance in society. The republic as a multi-confessional and multi-ethnic state will continue to use the humanitarian and moral potential of world and traditional religions, and to maintain interfaith harmony and dialogue between secular and spiritual leaders. Today, thanks to tireless work and patience over the years of independence, Kazakhstan has created its own unique model of a society of interethnic and interfaith harmony, known and recognized throughout the world as the «Kazakhstani Way».

The world, the dialogue of cultures and religions in Kazakhstan is rightly recognized as a world standard. Our formula of interethnic and interfaith harmony is also recognized by all progressive humanity, while the «Kazakhstan model» itself has become a model for example and imitation not only for its closest neighbors, but also for many foreign countries, the subject of scientific study for experts, scientists and politicians worldwide.

The phenomenon of Kazakhstan's success lies in the peculiarities of the history of our Motherland and its people, and the development of interfaith harmony is directly related to the processes of centuries-old interpenetration of various types of civilizations and cultures in the middle part of Great Eurasia.

In turn, the traditional tolerance inherent in the state-forming ethnic group, its benevolent attitude and respect for the representatives of other nations, cultures and faiths led to the construction of a strong and reliable foundation for the creative development and further prosperity of the young secular state in the new millennium. Over the past years, an unshakable foundation of the unity of the people has been created thanks to respect, mutual understanding, tolerance and harmony. In many ways, it was these spiritual bonds that became the basis for the formation of an independent Kazakhstan.

In his Message to the people of Kazakhstan «Strategy «Kazakhstan-2050». New political course of the established state «in the section» Religion in Kazakhstan in the 21st Century «President of Kazakhstan

N.A. Nazarbayev noted that the Constitution guarantees everyone the freedom of religion. Everyone has a choice. However, the choice of religious preferences must be treated very responsibly, because it affects the way of life, life, often the whole life of a person. Today, in the age of the Internet and high technology, when the information flow is colossal, the «filter» must be inside a person. It is required to form a religious consciousness that corresponds to the traditions and cultural norms of the country. Sincere faith should not be allowed to be replaced by aggressive and destructive fanaticism and extremism, when pseudo-religious rhetoric often hides criminal activity that undermines the foundations of society and encroaches on peace and stability in our country. Therefore, it is necessary to form new reliable mechanisms for overcoming social, ethnic and religious tensions and conflicts, strictly adhering to the principle of freedom of conscience, traditions of tolerance and religious tolerance [9].

Reducing the negative impact of religious radicalism is achievable, from our point of view, by developing critical thinking of people, widely informing the population about practices and methods of engaging in such organizations, working out protective mechanisms to counteract aggressive religious propaganda within the framework of specialized trainings in various educational formats. The main way to counter religious radicalism, and, accordingly, the formation of sociocultural cognitions of religious tolerance in society, is the ability of a person to choose the most reasonable way to achieve their individual and social well-being, opposing all sorts of destructive challenges of modern civilization.

To create conditions that help develop this skill at all levels of social practice, we must, in our view, strive to fully implement the principle of democratization of education, recognizing for each member of society the ability to independently master the universal, activity-based way of interconnecting with the outside world and allowing each person become an active participant in modern social transformations.

In other words, one of the main tasks of upbringing and education is the formation of a more complex type of individual and universal culture, which allows a person to go beyond the framework of simplified perception and understanding of the world, since it is a complex cultural picture of the world that is associated with a certain maturity with respect to the perception of ideas, spiritual symbols and diversity of human interests. Thus, an educated person acquires a kind of spiritual immunity in relation to the aggressive-onesided methods of his particular activity imposed on him in a given situation, goes to a higher level of personal development, where the principle of toleration becomes an organic lifestyle.

Today, the education system is faced with the need to solve problems related to finding ways and means to form a new activity culture, the most important condition of which is mastering reflexive ability in thinking. Since, first of all, this ability allows any of the participants of a socially significant activity to connect to it at various stages, starting with the process of determining the motives and goals of the activity itself, thereby objectively depriving it of the possibility of being «doomed» to the role of a passive performer of someone else's will. It is upbringing and education that should lay in man the foundation of abilities for selfrealization, self-development, self-regulation, necessary not only for his free civil and professional orientation, but also, mainly, for the ability to develop his inner spiritual potential, to choose and build his own world of values, master creative ways of solving scientific and life problems, discover the reflexive world of your own «I» and learn how to manage it.

The backbone of this process in our society is N.A. Nazarbayev considers the change in the appearance of Kazakhstanis, the characteristics of which should be the following features: «Firstly, this is a creative person, competitive in the global world. Secondly, it is a pragmatist and realist, focused on achieving specific goals. Thirdly, it is a person who has strengthened the national identity and abandoned everything that hinders the development of the nation. Fourthly, it is a man at the peak of global knowledge, for whom the cult of education is of paramount importance. Fifth, it is a conscious citizen who clearly understands that only evolutionary development gives the people a chance for prosperity. Sixth, it is a person with an open mind, a multilingual intellectual, ready for changes and perception of the best world experience» [10].

Modern Kazakhstan has chosen the path of modernization of the most important areas of not only social life, but also social consciousness as an adequate to the challenges of modernity of its civilizational development strategy. At the same time, it was stated that the modernization of public consciousness should not only accompany large-scale transformations in economics and politics, not just complement them, but should act as their core, ahead of them in their striving to determine the correct, appropriate time challenges, guidelines for further development. The fundamental requirement of the proposed modernization is the need to change the «model of consciousness and thinking», taking the best of what the era carries. The model of religious tolerance and interfaith dialogue formed in Kazakhstan fully meets these requirements.



  1. Kosichenko, A.G. (1968). Vozmozhnosti relihii v snizhenii urovnia vyzovov i uhroz sovremennosti [The possibilities of religion in reducing the level of challenges and threats of our time May, A.J. The Hapsburg Monarchy, 1867-1914]. New York: W.W. Norton & Company [in Russian].
  2. Podoprigora, R.A. (2013). Kommentarii k Zakonu Respubliki Kazakhstan «O relihioznoi deiatelnosti i relihioznykh obedineniiakh» [Commentary on the Law of the Republic of Kazakhstan «On religious activities and religious associations»]. Almaty: Nalohovyi Expert [in Russian].
  3. Bakhtin, M.M. (1979). Estetika slovesnoho tvorchestva [Aesthetics of verbal creativity]. Moscow: Iskusstvo [in Russian].
  4. Bibler, V.S. (1991). Ot naukoucheniia — k lohike kultury: dva filosofskikh vvedeniia v dvadtsat pervyi vek [From science to the logic of culture: two philosophical introductions into the twenty-first century]. Moscow: Politizdat [in Russian].
  5. Nysanbaev, A.N. (2001). Filosofiia vzaimoponimaniia [Philosophy of mutual understanding]. Almaty: Kazakh entsyklopediiasy [in Russian].
  6. Orynbekov, M.S. (2013). Henezis relihioznosti v Kazakhstane [The genesis of religiosity in Kazakhstan]. (2d ed.). Almaty: IFPR KN MON RK [in Russian].
  7. Shaukenova, Z. K. (Ed) (2013). Vliianie relihii na sovremennyi mir [The influence of religion on the modern world]. Mezhdunarodnaia nauchno-prakticheskaia konferentsiia – International scientific-practical conference. (405 p.). Almaty: IFPR KN MON RK [in Russian].
  8. Zakliuchitelnoe vystuplenie Prezidenta Respubliki Kazakhstan N.A. Nazarbaeyva na II Sieezde liderov mirovykh i traditsionnykh relihii (Astana, 13 sentiabria 2006 h.) [Final speech by the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan N.A. Nazarbayev at the II Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions (Astana, September 13, 2006)]. Retrieved from[in Russian]
  9. Poslanie Prezidenta Respubliki Kazakhstan N. Nazarbaeva narodu Kazakhstana ot 17 yanvaria 2014 h. «Kazakhstanskii put- 2050: Edinaia tsel, edinye interesy, edinoe budushchee». Ofitsialnyi sait Prezidenta Respubliki Kazakhstan [Message of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan N. Nazarbayev to the people of Kazakhstan. January 17, 2014 «Kazakhstan's Way-2050: Common Goal, Common Interests, Common Future». The official website of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan]. Retrieved from [in Russian].
  10. Vystuplenie N.A. Nazarbaeva na XXV Assamblee naroda Kazakhstana. 27 aprelia 2017 hoda [Speech by N.A. Nazarbayev at the XXV Assembly of the People of Kazakhstan. April 27, 2017]. Retrieved from [in Russian].
Year: 2019
City: Karaganda
Category: Philosophy