Islamic factors in the socio-political life of post-Soviet Russia.
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For Russia, religion is one factor that fostered its formation and assisted in the development of all facets of its culture. A current analysis of the relations between the Russian state and Islam is, therefore, the foundation of this study. The changes that took place in the religious and cultural life of Muslims over recent decades and ways in which the content of Islamic education can be changed were also analyzed in this study. The study further examined the relations between religion and state in Russia and how Islam, through novel parties and movements, has participated in the politics of the country. Three politics-related problems associated with Islam were identified: political Islamism, extremism and terrorism. The main objective of this research was to analyze the influence of the Islamic factor on the development of the socio-political situation in Russia, and to identify certain peculiarities of the Islamic revival within the Russian Federation. To facilitate this aim, the research analyzed the relations between Islam and the Russian state; examined the socio-political prerequisites that brought about the Russian Islam; studied the sources, both internal and external, influencing the Muslim community in Russia; and analyzed the interconnection between the three politics-related problems associated with Islam. The research seeks to provide a conceptual and ideological analysis of the present situation: based on a concrete-historical and functional analysis of the role of Islam in Russian, past and present. This approach will retrace the actual temporal sequence of past events and changes in the political and social lives of the vast majority of Muslims in Russia. This study also identified the main reasons Islamist activism became more pronounced as availability in the country of a multi-million Muslim community; awareness of their specific interests; conflicts in Muslim regions and in Islamic-Christian socio cultural borders; and influences of the various foreign countries. An analysis of the socio-political situation and study of the main tendencies of influence of the Islamic factors in Russia show that Islam is a foundation for self-identification and a means of self-preservation for a certain part of the nation.