Lecture 21 Mar 18 Politics and Religion-From Secularism to Post-Secularism

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9 Aug 2010
March 18th, 2008
Political Theology in Europe
public authority geared toward insuring private salvation
tension b/w political authority and catholic church (power was excommunication)
until 16th century, constant tension, was nevertheless expectation that they were on the side of God,
notion of Christendom
shattered reformation and rise of religious wars
before 16th century, the faith and politics was straight forward
secular leaders sought out the decision from religious leaders
after 1000 years, the power of church was the notion that here was Christendom
if they didn't obey the church, the church would put you outside of church, prosecution
if secular leaders no longer sought religious confirmation of their rule, then they were
protestant reformation, politically there was a great impact religious wars torn apart Europe
Argument for Toleration
1. Modus Vivendi: government should enforce true religion but everybody is winning
2. principled argument: freedom of conscience, governments have no business saving souls
3. scepticism: we don't know what the true religion was
z government should be involved in saving religious soul
z government shouldn't be involved in, give freedom
z we should tolerate each other because we don't know thus religion should be a private matter
separation of Church and State:
antidisestablishmentarianism: movement away from reserving space for church
initiated not to protect the state from the church, it was set up to protect churches from the state
Case of France and Lacite (product of political struggle)
after French revolution, catholic church sided with the monarchy, thus republic passed laws
to make sure church is separated from state
never actually complete: school and public rituals
but huge differences: separation of church and state not the same as separation of religion and
use of public time is still very much Christian: ie. Easter Sunday etc.
- most sociologist predict religion will go away: Marx and Weber
rationalization thesis: Weber
Entzauberung: Demystification
religion will first become a private matter, then will disappear form public discourse altogether as
people no longer believe it
Political thesis: religious/religion and political justification: states and power no longer need God
(Machiavelli, Hobbes, Locke)
modernization and differentiation: each pursuit governed by its own knowledge
how do you measure it?
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