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Religion, secularity, totalities, totalitarians, etc.

I’ve added arguments and responses made in a discussion of the issue elsewhere to my recent entry on faith and reason. For convenience’s sake I’ve added them in the form of comments.

The discussion has clarified for me why modern secularists and antimodern traditionalists view each other as crazed tyrants. Each inhabits in thought a world system that’s complete enough to live by. The MS tries to extract his out of a few clear principles, the AR lets his grow out of whatever seems sensible and true. The result is that the MS thinks the AR is forcing unfounded beliefs into a nice neat minimal picture of the world, while the AR thinks the MS is forcing a world that is bigger and richer than we can know into a bed of Procrustes. In political matters each will appear to the other as a dangerous irrationalist making arbitrary demands that have nothing to do with the way the world really is.

To see how an example of how the dispute plays out, see my exchanges with Alice here and here. Oddly, it seems natural to each of us to accuse the other of “totalizing,” which evidently can be defining either as “adding arbitrary stuff to create a totality” or “extending insufficient principles beyond their limits to create a totality.”