Liberalism or Spirituality?

Yoshie Furuhashi furuhashi.1 at SPAMosu.edu
Wed Jan 3 02:18:39 MST 2001


George wrote:

>  > >In a truly secular society, all spirituality would be private.
>>
>>  >Anyway, I certainly do indeed think that religion -- or the lack of
>>  >it -- is up to the individual.
>>
>>  >In a _truly, secular& socialist_ society,
>>  >sprituality&religion will be up to individuals.
>>
>>  And so on.
>>
>>  It seems to me that when posters speak positively of "spirituality"
>>  on this list, they simply mean an affirmation of liberalism
>>  (sovereign individualism of the inner consumer + "repressive
>  > tolerance"), nothing more.
>
>IS THIS WHAT SPIRITUALISM NECESSARILY MEANS?

By no means.  In fact, the opposite is the case.  The majority of the
religious & spiritual people in the world do not think that "religion
-- or the lack of it -- is up to the individual."  Frankly, I don't
think that those who speak positively of "spirituality" here really
understand the worldviews of the religious.

>  > In "a truly secular & socialist society" imagined by "spiritualist"
>>  posters here, human beings will apparently be born, Athena-like, as
>  > full-fledged "individuals" with Kantian autonomy as well....
>
>WHY WOULD THEY NECESSARILY BE FULLY-FLEDGED INDIVIDUALS? COULD THEY
>NOT BE DEVELOPING BEINGS?

That is exactly the question.  For children in the actually existing
world, whether to grow up in the environment where religion holds
sway, which religion should define their upbringing, etc. are not at
all up to them.

>WHAT ABOUT THE "SOCIAL INDIVIDUAL" THAT MARX DISCUSSED?WHAT ABOUT
>THE PUBLIC/PRIVATE DISTINCTION?

In the actually existing world, it is social individuals who have or
have not practiced religion.  Pace some posters' fancy, religion --
or the lack of it -- has & will never be simply up to an abstract
individual with Kantian autonomy.  It has & will be inescapably a
social & political (not abstractly individual & merely private)
question.

Yoshie





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