Saturday, December 22, 2007

Secular Europe? Think twice

On 21st of Dember, Tony Blair converted to Catholicism: see here;

On the same day, Sarkozy held a speech in front of the Catholic bishops in Rome arguing that religion should play a more important role in the french public sphere: see here;

The time is high to engage in a more robust conversation on the place of religion in the european
public sphere.

A good place to start is The Immanent Frame, an SSRC blog that deals with issues of secularism, religion ant the public sphere


Patrick S. O'Donnell said...

I agree Lorenzo. There is already a number of very intelligent posts at this new blog. And Jurgen Habermas can be counted among a handful of European intellectuals (of course Habermas is a philosopher, a far smaller class than that of 'intellectuals') who have begun to deal with this topic in fresh ways.

Incidentally, the law blog PrawfsBlawg ( often has posts that treat religion in the public sphere, albeit often confined to the North American continent. Still, it's worth a look, as is, for legal news on religion, Howard Friedman's blog, Religion Clause:

Best wishes,

Anonymous said...

In this day and age converting to "catholocism" is no more profound than changing your overcoat.

Anonymous said...

Exoteric religionists and secularists share the same presumptions about Reality.

Namely that everything is objective to us, or that we are inherently separate from Reality (God), the world process altogether, and all other sentient (including human) beings.

A quote from the Brhadayanyaka Upanishad: "It is from the other that fear arises".

Meaning that the moment you presume separation from anything you are possessed by fear. And what is more, the thus objectified "other" is your enemy, and therefore you are always at war with the "other", seek to control the "other", and eventually to destroy the "other".

We thus have a fear saturated "culture".

So in our normal dreadful sanity we are always at war with the Divine Reality, the world altogether, and all other beings.

The entire western "cultural" project has ALWAYS been (and is now in a BIG TIME way) based on this triple fear saturated objectification process, and is thus based on the drive to total power and control.

And thus, inevitably, on the eventual destruction of everything.

Have you read the news?

ALL of the usual conversations about the "problem" are firmly embedded within this reductionist fear saturated paradigm---including whatever is posted at Immanent Frame.

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