Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Of course Hegel has something to do with it: it is called the cunning of reason. French militant secularism can be treated as a component of a Hegelian view of Europe, since French secular values are secularized Christian values. Hegel, and I following him, are neither in favor of secularism nor of a strict separation of church and state, so I have no problems with the CSU on those grounds. (In Europe, unlike America, even reactionaries can be correct on some issues. This is because European societies are organic. The U.S. on the other hand is an artificial construct, the product of social engineering. So since reactionaries here have no authentic tradition to fall back upon, they have nothing to help them to get it right at least some of the time.) We don't need to be in favor of secularism, since reality is secular. So we can afford to give religion some space in society. This isn't possible in America, since reality isn't allowed to enter into the debate. This is because the notion of reality implies that there is an objective reality, binding on everyone: but that contradicts that prime American principle, that everyone has a right to their opinion. If the creed is everyone has a right to their opinion (without the qualification that it must be a well-justified opinion, and able to withstand criticism by others, which the creed does not include), then reality has no privileged place in America. It is just another perspective, one among many others.

I don't know what you're thinking about when you say that in the Federal Republic, religion has "rail[ed] against civil law". I'd be grateful if you could tell me what it is you have in mind. But I should point out that the German Enlightenment, unlike the French and Scottish enlightenments, never adopted a hostile position against religion. In essence, in Germany, philosophers and theologians just agreed to work together. That is why about the only modern society you have Christian fundamentalism is America: it is virtually unheard of in Germany. (But there is significant anti-abortion sentiment in Germany, which I find puzzling. My guess is that that is an instance of the contemporary German drive to over-compensate for the crimes of the Nazi period.)

A bomb, H bomb, Minuteman / The names get more attractive / The decisions are made by NATO / The press call it British opinion -- The Three Johns

by Alexander on Wed Jan 17th, 2007 at 03:05:44 AM EST
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