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Secularism is to be distinguished from secularisation. The latter is a process postulated by sociologists and other social theorists, including most famously Karl Marx and Max Weber, according to which as a society becomes more affluent, develops science and technology, and engages in rational discussion so it moves away from religious belief. This cultural transition is particularly associated with the rise of modernity in the 16th century, and hence is more generally identified with modernisation. In brief as science and technology rise so religious belief declines and with that the sense of cosmic meaning and purpose gives way to mundane disenchantment. This theory is cited in explanation of various phenomena from the abandonment of religious practice to the rise of social anxiety. The main question then is whether it is true. Some critics argue that there are examples of scientific and technological advancement and material enrichment without decline in religion, as in sections of US society, in many Muslim countries and in south east Asia. Others insist that it is necessary to distinguish social and cultural phases from unidirectional long-term movements and that it is impossible to say which ‘modernisation’ really is. Yet others argue that the thesis of secularisation is in fact the expression of a wish that it be so and part of an attempt to persuade people to abandon religious belief and practice. Secularism itself stands for two related but distinct ideas. First, that there is a distinction between the roles of the state and the church, or more generally between political and religious functions, and that this should be observed by granting each autonomy. It is not for religious leader to dictate politics nor for politicians to control religion. Many religious believers themselves hold to secularism in this sense. Second, that there is no place for religion in the public sphere. Secularists in this sense are generally agnostics or atheists, sometimes appropriating the term ‘humanists’ hence secular humanism. Unsurprisingly, secularists of the second sort tend also to favour and promote the thesis of secularisation.

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    For the last fifty years, from the Second Vatican Council onward, it made sense to speak of an . . . .

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    Catholic Ideas Versus Catholic Realities?

    "America, Liberalism, and Catholicism" JPII Conference On April 15-16, 2021, the University of Dallas hosted a conference on “America, Liberalism, and Catholicism,” organized by the University's St. JPII Fellow in Social Thought, Ryan Anderson, and the American Public Philosophy Institute. This conference was co-sponsored by Liberal Learning for Life. ********** Liberal Learning for Life @ University of Dallas: https://udallas.edu/liberal-learning Twitter: https://twitter.com/Lib_learning_UD Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/liberallearningforlife/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/liberallearningforlife Podcast: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/liberal-learning-for-life-ud/id1516704526 Free video series at https://www.catholicfaithandculture.udallas.edu/landing-the-person-action-influence

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    Confronting Secularism Today Fr. Robert J. Spitzer, S.J., Ph.D. Introduction Secularism is rampant today, and according to John Finnis ("Secularism, Morality, a...

  • Secular Surge: A New Fault Line in American Politics

    American society is rapidly secularizing-a radical departure from its historically high level of religiosity-and politics is a big part of the reason. Just as, forty years ago, the Religious Right arose as a new political movement, today secularism is gaining traction as a distinct and politically energized identity. This book examines the political causes and political consequences of this secular surge, drawing on a wealth of original data. The authors show that secular identity is in part a reaction to the Religious Right. However, while the political impact of secularism is profound, there may not yet be a Secular Left to counterbalance the Religious Right. Secularism has introduced new tensions within the Democratic Party while adding oxygen to political polarization between Democrats and Republicans. Still there may be opportunities to reach common ground if politicians seek to forge coalitions that encompass both secular and religious Americans.

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    Church and State

    John Haldane distinguishes between secularism and secularisation.

  • Faith's Place: Democracy in a Religious World

    A Kapunda Press Title. "this important book examines the implications of significant societal changes for the vitality of civil society" PETER KURTI What is the future of democracy in a religious world? Over the next fifty years, Australia is predicted to become a less religious country, while the world at large will become more religious. This raises questions about what kind of society Australia will be as the positive and negative influences of religion fade, and liberalism and democracy struggle to adapt to a changing world. It also raises challenges for Australia's democratic leaders, who might struggle to comprehend the needs of the minority of religious Australians, and to balance these with the demands of the non-religious majority. In Faith's Place, eight essayists, including the Liberal Party's Dean Smith and the Labor Party's Luke Gosling, respond to Bryan Turner and Damien Freeman's critical assessments of the challenges for democracy and religion in Australia. The collection offers a number of Australian and international perspectives on what it means for democracy and religion to flourish in Australian society and politics today. "a timely consideration of church-state relations" MICHAEL SEXTON SC

  • A Crisis in Culture: How Secularism Is Becoming a Religion

    In this timely and penetrating book, Fr. George Rutler shows how the West's decades-long cultural assault against Christianity is finally reaching its inevitable conclusion: the self-destruction of our culture and society.Fr. Rutler sees the past thirty years as a moral “cold war” between Christians and those for whom personal behavior is of lesser concern than one's “good intentions.” He explains how relativism and its consequent dictatorship of feeling spun civilization on its head by denying the relevance — and the very existence — of God. Indeed, it seeped into the remotest corners of society and, over time, led our entire culture into a full-on rebellion against our Creator. The good news is that Fr. Rutler believes we can emerge from the rubble of civilization, but first there must be a battle between those who are inspired by God and those

  • What Can the Church Learn from Secular Culture? Vatican II

    Friends, even in the desert landscape of postmodernism, you can find many references to the sacred, to the good, to the holy. Now, these things won’t be right out of St. Thomas’ playbook; they will be in a somewhat twisted form. And this doesn’t mean we can’t be critical of the culture. But we cannot hate the culture, for you cannot effectively evangelize that which you despise. Watch future videos on the "Bishop Barron on Vatican II" playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLg6k5UmSDlchNTYXi95SfA_9-vFwhx19N Videos produced in cooperation with The Hildebrand Project: http://www.hildebrandproject.org ———VIDEO LINKS——— Bishop Barron on Proclaiming Christ to a Secular Culture: https://www.wordonfire.org/resources/lecture/proclaiming-christ-to-a-secular-culture/2386/ Bishop Barron on The Benedict Option and the Identity/Relevance Dilemma: https://www.wordonfire.org/resources/article/the-benedict-option-and-the-identity-relevance-dilemma/5442/ Bishop Barron on Caesar and Christ: https://www.wordonfire.org/resources/homily/caesar-and-christ/558/ Bishop Barron on the Buffered Self: https://www.wordonfire.org/resources/video/bishop-barron-on-the-buffered-self/5154/ Bishop Barron on Blasting Holes through the Buffered Self: https://www.wordonfire.org/resources/article/blasting-holes-through-the-buffered-self/19502/ Word on Fire Vatican II FAQs page: https://www.wordonfire.org/vatican-ii-faq/ Bishop Barron's Resources on the Second Vatican Council: https://www.wordonfire.org/vatican-ii/ ———WATCH——— Subscribe to this Channel: https://bit.ly/31LV1sn Word on Fire Institute Channel: https://bit.ly/2voBZMD Word on Fire en Español Channel: https://bit.ly/2uFowjl ———WORD ON FIRE——— Word on Fire: https://www.wordonfire.org/ Word on Fire Institute: https://wordonfire.institute/ FREE Daily Gospel Reflections (English or Español): https://dailycatholicgospel.com/ ———SOCIAL MEDIA——— Bishop Barron Instagram: https://bit.ly/2Sn2XgD Bishop Barron Facebook: https://bit.ly/2Sltef5 Bishop Barron Twitter: https://bit.ly/2Hkz6yQ Word on Fire Instagram: https://bit.ly/39sGNyZ Word on Fire Facebook: https://bit.ly/2HmpPpW Word on Fire Twitter: https://bit.ly/2UKO49h Word on Fire en Español Instagram: https://bit.ly/38mqofD Word on Fire en Español Facebook: https://bit.ly/2SlthaL Word on Fire en Español Twitter: https://bit.ly/38n3VPt ———SUPPORT WORD ON FIRE——— Donate: https://www.wordonfire.org/donate/ Word on Fire Store: https://store.wordonfire.org/ Pray: https://bit.ly/2vqU7Ft

  • The Enchantments of Mammon: How Capitalism Became the Religion of Modernity

    Far from displacing religions, as has been supposed, capitalism became one, with money as its deity. Eugene McCarraher reveals how mammon ensnared us and how we can find a more humane, sacramental way of being in the world.If socialists and Wall Street bankers can agree on anything, it is the extreme rationalism of capital. At least since Max Weber, capitalism has been understood as part of the "disenchantment" of the world, stripping material objects and social relationships of their mystery and sacredness. Ignoring the motive force of the spirit, capitalism rejects the awe-inspiring divine for the economics of supply and demand.Eugene McCarraher challenges this conventional view. Capitalism, he argues, is full of sacrament, whether or not it is acknowledged. Capitalist enchantment first flowered in the fields and factories of England and was brought to America by Puritans and evangelicals whose doctrine made ample room for industry and profit. Later, the corporation was mystically animated with human personhood, to preside over the Fordist endeavor to build a heavenly city of mechanized production and communion. By the twenty-first century, capitalism has become thoroughly enchanted by the neoliberal deification of "the market."Informed by cultural history and theology as well as economics, management theory, and marketing, The Enchantments of Mammon looks not to Marx and progressivism but to nineteenth-century Romantics for salvation. The Romantic imagination favors craft, the commons, and sensitivity to natural wonder. It promotes labor that, for the sake of the person, combines reason, creativity, and mutual aid. In this impassioned challenge, McCarraher makes the case that capitalism has hijacked and redirected our intrinsic longing for divinity--and urges us to break its hold on our souls.