Iran: Land of peaceful existence for Zoroastrianism, Islam, Christianity and Judaism
An Iranian Jew looks at the Star of David at the entrance of a synagogue in Tehran

Iran’s official religion is Islam and the majority of the country’s citizens are professing Shi'a Islam, one of the two mainstream sects that exist in the Islamic world.

“The official religion of Iran is Islam and the Twelver Ja‘fari school of [shi‘ī] religion,” reads Article 12 of the first Chapter of the Iranian Constitution, approved in a referendum on 2 and 3 December 1979, several months after the landmark revolution.

Other religious minorities such as Sunnis, which make up the remaining portion of the country’s Muslim population, are free in their convictions, practices as well as religious education, all of which have been consecrated in the Iranian Constitution.

“Other Islamic schools of thought, such as the Hanafi, Shafi‘i, Maliki, Hanbali, and Zaydi, are deserving of total respect and their followers are free to perform their own religious practices, religious education, and personal matters,” according to the same article.

The Iranian Constitution enshrines all of their rights and even they can be recognized in courts of law. “The dispute over these matters is recognized in the courts,” it ascertains.

Apart from Muslim minorities, other non-Muslim practitioners have their rights preserved in the Iranian charter. Zoroastrians, Christians, and Jews are all entitled to worship in their own fire temple, churches or synagogues without any restriction.

Chak Chak, a Zoroastrian place of worship in the central Iranian Province of Yazd

“Zoroastrian, Jewish, and Christian Iranians are considered the only recognized religious minorities. They may exercise their religious ceremonies within the limits of the law. They are free to exercise matters of personal status and religious education and they follow their own rituals,” as stated in Article 14 of the Constitution.

Iran however doesn’t recognize Bahai faith, arguing that it’s not been propagated by a true prophet. Despite this fact, several courts of law have recently issued verdicts in favour of indicted Bahais.  


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