October 13, 2015

Rousseau, Coleridge, Maritain, and Monnet › ... › World › Religious › Religion, Politics & StateThe Stillborn God: Religion, Politics, and the Modern West [Mark Lilla] on A brilliant account of religion's role ... The History of the Great Separation By Rob Hardy on November 28, 2007

Lilla nominates 17th century English philosopher Thomas Hobbes as the most important questioner of the issue. He insisted that questions about God could more practically be viewed as questions about human behavior, and that if there were any religious revelation, it had to be filtered by the human mind, perceptions, and passions, including the search for power. The intellectual separation of politics and religion had begun. John Locke and David Hume took Hobbes's ideas and built many of the concepts on which liberal democracies are founded, including that the power of government be limited and shared, and government be unable to interfere or advocate religious ideas or practice. There was reaction against this sort of thinking from Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Hegel, and Kant. › ... › Regional & Cultural › European › British & Minding the Modern: Human Agency, Intellectual Traditions, and Responsible Knowledge (9780268038441): Thomas Pfau: Books.
In this brilliant study, Thomas Pfau argues that the loss of foundational concepts in classical and medieval Aristotelian philosophy caused a fateful separation between reason and will in European thought. Pfau traces the evolution and eventual deterioration of key concepts of human agency—will, person, judgment, action—from antiquity through Scholasticism and on to eighteenth-century moral theory and its critical revision in the works of Samuel Taylor Coleridge. 

By Ronald Osborn on September 22, 2015
It was only in 1937 with the drafting of the Irish Constitution, Moyn claims, that “the discourse reached the heights of Christianity.” Before “this period ‘human rights’ had always been identified with the French Revolution and its promise of secular emancipation.” It would take another three decades, he asserts (both in this book and in his earlier work, The Last Utopia), before “human rights” proper could finally “take off” as secular leftists wrested the idea from the lexicon of reactionary (albeit in some ways noble) Cold War and largely Catholic Christian conservatives, transforming its meaning into a truly progressive and transnational defense of individual liberties.

As Moyn explicitly affirms, Maritain is a “pivotal player” in the narrative reconstructed in thismore recent piece. Indeed, an impression one could get from reading Moyn’s article is that Maritain succeeded—almost singlehandedly—in extrapolating the concept of the human “person” from its roots in the Catholic anti-modernism of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and reinterpreting it in a way that offered the basis for the positive justification of human rights contained in his 1942 pamphlet entitled The Rights of Man and Natural Law. In this sense, Maritain is presented both as a “stepping stone” and a “model” for the broader process Moyn describes as a “conversion” of Catholicism to human rights.

My contention is that this reading exaggerates the extent of Maritain’s rupture with the anti-modernism of traditional Catholic political thought, while at the same time underplaying a tension that remains unresolved between the conception of human rights Maritain ultimately endorsed and another he consistently rejected. In order to substantiate these points, it may be useful to return in more detail to the content of the argument advanced by Maritain in his 1942 pamphlet: a complete reconstruction of which is surprisingly lacking from Moyn’s text, despite its centrality for his narrative.

2 Responses to “Cosmology and the environment”
Joseph Gainza says: September 14, 2015 at 6:54 pm
I agree with the statement that science takes things apart to describe them; religion puts things together to say what they mean. The new cosmologies do a wonderful job of describing the birth and evolution of the universe; they do not provide a narration of meaning. Humans need both accurate descriptions and modes of meaning-making.

I think Bron draws an unnecessary dualism between benevolent science and fundamentalist religion. The so-called wonder of science has also produced all of our modern capitalist economy, nuclear warheads, fighter jets, bombs, etc. To suggest there is something essential about religion that CAUSES wrongdoing is simply not true. Religion is always embedded in the social and political currents of its time, just like science.

Wikipedia - Jean Omer Marie Gabriel Monnet (French: [ʒɑ̃ mɔnɛ]; 9 November 1888 – 16 March 1979) was a French political economist and diplomat. He is regarded by many as the chief architect of European unity [1] and the founding father of the European Union. He was the first leader of a European executive body, as President of the High Authority of the European Coal and Steel Community, and thus he is known as the "Father of Europe".[2] Never elected to public office, Monnet worked behind the scenes of American and European governments as a well-connected pragmatic internationalist.[3] He was named patron of the 1980–1981 academic year at the College of Europe, in honour of his accomplishments.

This particular monograph pays homage to a hero of our times, a Frenchman named Jean Monnet. He is mainly known for his role in the creation of what was to ...

Jun 26, 2015 - by Christine Devin & Kireet Joshi
This monograph presents the life and accomplishments of a man little known in India, Jean Monnet. He is considered as "the founding father of Europe", but in reality Monnet has been much more than that. He has been an instrument at the service of a vision. That vision was a world that would not be divided by borders. From the first World War to the creation of Europe, his life was entirely dedicated to uniting men. Value-oriented Education Series. ... Homer and the Iliad, Sri Aurobindo and Ilion.

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