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From: China Tibet Online 2013-12-04 10:34:00
by: Lethe Guo
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Senior CPC member: atheism does not interfere with religious freedom

Editor's Note: Zhu Weiqun, s senior member of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and director of the Committee for Ethnic and Religious Affairs of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC - China's top political advisory body), talked to the European press during his visit to Europe in October and answered questions about the execution of religious freedom by the atheist CPC.

"I believe that a communist without religious belief does not interfere with the execution of the policy of religious belief freedom," said Zhu Weiqun during an interview in Switzerland on Oct. 18, 2013, reported earlier by China Tibet Online.

Zhu Weiqun, the current director of the Committee for Ethnic and Religious Affairs, is a senior communist party official of china who has been engaged in religious affairs for a long time.

Reporters from Switzerland and Italy thus grasped the opportunity to voice their suspect and questioning on how the atheist ruling communist party of China could formulate and carry out a policy of religious freedom given that materialism and theism were in fact contradict to each other.

No religious belief for CPC members is not a harmful thing but an advantage to our work

Zhu said:"I find that no religious belief for CPC members is not a harmful thing but an advantage to our work."

In history, China took a tolerant attitude towards religion, which resulted in the coexistence of five religions – Taoism, Buddhism, Catholicism, Islamism and Christianity. China's history is different from that of Europe. In a long period of history, Christianity in Europe had a dominant advantage; while the major religion in Western and Central Asian countries was Islam.

"The reason why people believe me and think I can execute the religious policies of the party honestly is I am an atheist," said Zhu Weiqun. "Because no matter which kind of religion I choose to believe, the other four would be suspicious to me as there are five major religions in China."

He further explained that the theoretical basis of the CPC is the Marxism, including dialectical materialism and historical materialism, which is clearly a different view of the world.

"A person has to swear to follow materialism instead of theism when he joints the CPC. This is very clear and simple. As a communist, I surely adhere to the materialism world outlook and atheism."

However, it doesn't interfere with the party's policy of religious freedom.

Zhu said:"The collective target of Chinese people is to develop the country and improve the life of its people." And this has exceeded the divergence in religious belief.

Of the 1.3 billion people in China, over 100 million people believe in religions while the majority of people are not.

The party never considers religion an obstacle or a threat for achieving the target, because the mass religious followers have the same and reconcilable target with the ruling party and the majority atheist people of China to develop the country and improve the life of people.

"The stability of Chinese society needs to unite everyone with a common target, and the religious policy should conform to the inherent law of region's social phenomena."

Policy of religious freedom was established since the founding of CPC in 1921 and has never changed

Basic policies are consistent including the policy of religious belief freedom, which has been carried out since the founding of the CPC in 1921.

"No matter in the period of war or social construction, the Communist Party of China (CPC) must unite the 100 million religious people in order to gain the success of the undertakings of China. If the unification is needed, the policy of religious freedom must be carried out, for it is not only a necessity of the cause, but also a long-standing phenomenon in human society analyzed theoretically by the CPC," said by Zhu Weiqun.

He also pointed out that the party indeed made mistakes and didn't implement the religious policy effectively during the Great Cultural Revolution (1966-1976). "But as soon as the period was over, we continued to carry out the policy."

Formed in the long-time practice of the revolution and construction of the Communist Party of China (CPC), and shaped by generations of China's leaders led by Mao Zedong, Deng Xiaoping, Jiang Zemin, Hu Jintao and Xi Jinping respectively, "China's religious and ethnic policies will continue as they are, regardless of the change in leadership. The only change, if any, would be the strengthened support to the ethnic minority areas for their socio-economic development and improvement of people's life."

In response to the phenomena of some party members' attending Faungong and donating monasteries, Zhu said "if someone deviates from our ideological foundation and insists on religious belief, then he could choose to be a religious disciple other than a CPC party member." That also embodies the freedom of religion in China.

Yet, he also stressed that "FaLungong is an anti-social cult and banned by Chinese law. Some party members have participated in this religious activity for some faith reasons, which have violated the party constitution in my view. We should first correct their behavior through ideological education, and ask them to abide by the constitution."

[editor : ]
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