Postmodern spirituality A dialogue in five parts Part I: The rise of a proto-spirituality in the late works of some leading postmodern thinkers Roland Benedikter integralworld.net
You should never forget that many of the main representatives of postmodernism are, as I said, not only of “Core European” (German or French), but also of Jewish-Arab origins, or are strongly influenced by them. And so, when they reach the borderline, when they come into the neighborhood of “essential” experience of “the other”, or spiritual experience, they feel always near to their origin of spiritual departure. So, being a mix of French (or German) and Jewish-Arabic, a certain mechanism comes into action.
Derrida, Cixous, and Levinas have this kind of sacred prohibition to make something representative out of the experience of “the other”. They don't have to create an image of “the other” and the “inaudible, silent presence”. Levinas and Derrida say it explicitly: When there is the experience of “the other” coming out of the productive void of the ego, when you have the possibility to observe your own thoughts in the very subjective-objective process of their genesis — when you become aware that “not you”, that “the other” is thinking this consciousness of yours, as Hegel said, in this very moment you have to take a step back, because you cannot create an image of “the other”. You can and should not give it a name. You don't have to think to represent all this in mental thoughts (cf., for example, Jean Francois Lyotard, Heidegger and “the Jews”, University of Minnesota Press 1990). This is a very strong, even in many cases pre-rational reason, why those thinkers have created “essentials” in their intellectual life, but declined to include them actively into their intellectual works. It is completely understandable, and maybe it is far better than re-creating mythical images of the “other” realms of reality, as some of the modernists were doing in their last years.
In my opinion, the postmodernists, in many cases, have a primitive - or over-intellectualized - conception not only of God, but also of Jewish religion. Jewish religion says much more, and is far more sophisticated, as they could grasp from their deconstructivistic - and often materialistic - standpoint. Therefore, there concept of Jewish heritage and religion is representative only for their own interests and intellectual possibilities, not for Jewish heritage and religion as such and as a whole. PART TWOTusar N Mohapatra Says: August 13th, 2006 at 12:42 am Randall Collins, in his Sociology of Philosophy, has already proposed a spiritualist bias in Phenomenology too, analogous to Benedikter’s batting for post-modernism. Although, Husserl’s Logical Investigations in 1900 was equally explosive as Freud's Interpretation of Dreams and Max Plank’s Quantum theory, which came out in the same year.