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Download A Catholic Modernity?: Charles Taylor's Marianist Award by James L. Heft PDF

By James L. Heft

This booklet deals a chain of reflections at the country of Christianity, and particularly Catholicism, on the earth at the present time. the center-piece of the amount is a lecture via the popular thinker Charles Taylor, from which the name of the ebook is taken. The lecture, brought at Dayton college in January of 1996, provided Taylor the chance to talk about the non secular dimensions of his highbrow commitment--dimensions left implicity in his philosophical writing. in reality, this is often the one position the place Taylor, a Roman Catholic, spells out his theological perspectives and his feel of the cultural placement of Catholicism, its historical past and trajectory. He makes use of the social gathering to argue opposed to the typical declare that hindrances to non secular trust in sleek tradition are epistemic--that they must do with the triumph of the clinical worldview. the true stumbling blocks, says Taylor, are ethical and religious, having to do with the old disasters of non secular institutions.

Four famous commentators on faith and society, Protestant, Catholic, have been invited to answer Taylor's lecture: William M. Shea, George Marsden, Jean Bethke Elshtain, and Rosemary Luling-Haughton. Their chapters provide quite a few astute reflections at the tensions among faith and modernity, and specifically at the function that Catholicism can and will play in modern society. the quantity concludes with Taylor's perceptive and considerate reaction to his interlocutors. A Catholic Modernity offers some of the most considerate conversations so far in regards to the position of the Catholic Church within the glossy global, and extra typically, in regards to the function of faith in democratic liberal societies.

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Extra resources for A Catholic Modernity?: Charles Taylor's Marianist Award Lecture, with responses by William M. Shea, Rosemary Luling Haughton, George Marsden, and Jean Bethke Elshtain

Example text

Exclusive humanism also carries great dangers, which remain very underexplored in modern thought. II I want to look at some of these dangers here. In doing so, I will be offering my own interpretation of modern life and sensibilities. CHARLES TAYLOR 19 All this is very much open to contestation, but we urgently need new perspectives in this domain—as it were, Ricci readings of modernity. The first danger that threatens an exclusive humanism, which wipes out the transcendent beyond life, is that it provokes as reaction an immanent negation of life.

Neo-Nietzscheans and secular humanists together condemn religion and reject any good beyond life. But neo-Nietzscheans and acknowledgers of transcendence are together in their absence of surprise at the continued disappointments of secular humanism, and together also in the sense that its vision of life lacks a dimension. In a third lineup, secular humanists and believers come together in defending an idea of the human good against the antihumanism of Nietzsche's heirs. A fourth party can be introduced to this field if we take account of the fact that the acknowledgers of transcendence are divided.

Notes 1. This is not to say that we cannot claim in certain areas to have gained certain insights and settled certain questions that still troubled our ancestors. For instance, we are able to see the Inquisition clearly for the unevangelical horror that it was. But this doesn't exclude our having a lot to learn from earlier ages as well, even from people who also made the mistake of supporting the Inquisition. 2. Henri Bremond, Histoire litteraire du sentient religieux en France depuis la fin des guerres de religion jusqu'a nos jours (Paris: A.

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