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指导英国社会学essay:Are we seeing the emergence of a ‘post-secular

论文价格: 免费 时间:2019-08-16 10:49:53 来源:www.ukassignment.org 作者:留学作业网
1.0 Introduction介绍
不同的学者对世界世俗化进程有不同的看法。同一学派的学者认为,世界是高度世俗的,宗教影响很小(呋喃,2015:1)。即使在某些地区和国家有宗教复兴现象,它们也是个别现象(布鲁斯,2011:54)。然而,其他一些学者认为,宗教复兴的趋势是全球性的。例如,福音主义和伊斯兰教在世界上的影响继续扩大。这些宗教复兴现象不仅存在于第三世界,也存在于发达国家。以美国为例,作为世界上科学技术最先进、社会分化和合理化程度最高、宪政民主最完善的国家之一,其宗教影响应当降低。但事实并非如此。事实上,美国的宗教形势是宗派发展蓬勃。这使得一些以前的学者,或多或少是世俗主义者无法解释。这一现象使这些学者提出了当今世界存在着一种“退”的趋势(伯杰,1999:23;2005:405)。因此,对于当今社会出现的世俗或非世俗社会存在着诸多争议,哈贝马斯(2008a:98;2008b:58)否认了这两种观点。他认为,后世俗社会正在兴起,要证明这一观点的正确性,对于认识当今世界发生的宗教复兴现象,解决由此带来的暴力事件等问题,具有积极的意义。本文旨在分析和理解这一观点的内容,以分析和判断这一观点的正确性。本文首先从三个方面分析后世俗化的特征,然后从三个方面探讨后世俗化特征产生的原因和表现形式。根据分析结果,可以判断哈贝马斯(2008)关于“后世俗社会”出现的观点是否正确。
Different scholars gave different opinions about the secularization process of the world. Scholars of a same school believe that the world is highly secular and religious influence is very small (Furani, 2015:1). Even if there are religious revival phenomena in some regions and countries, they are individual phenomena (Bruce, 2011:54). However, some other scholars believe that there is a global trend towards a revival of religion. For example, the influence of evangelicalism and Islam in the world continues to expand. These phenomena of religious revival not only exist in the third world, but also in developed countries. Taking the United States as an example, as one of the countries in the world with the most advanced science and technology, the highest degree of social differentiation and rationalization, and the most perfect constitutional democracy, the influence of its religion should be reduced. But that is not the case. In fact, the religious situation in the United States is that the sectarian development is flourishing. This made it impossible for some former scholars who were more or less secularists unable to explain. The phenomena make these scholars put forward the assertion that there is a trend of desecularization in the world today (Berger, 1999:23; 2005:405). Therefore, there is much controversy about the emergence of a secular or non-secular society in today’s society, and Habermas (2008a:98; 2008b:58) denies both opinions. He believes that a post-secular society is emerging currently, to prove the correctness of this viewpoint has a positive meaning to recognize the phenomenon of religious revival that has occurred in the current world and to resolve the problems, such as violence incidents, that this brings. This essay aims to analyze and understand the content of this point of view to analyze and judge the correctness of this point of view. This article first analyzes the characteristics of a post-secular from three aspects, and then it explores the reasons and manifestations of these characteristics from three aspects. Based on the analysis results, it can judge whether Habermas’s (2008) view on the emergence of a ‘post-secular society’ is correct.
2.0 Analysis of the Characteristics of a Post-Secular Society后世俗社会特征分析
后世俗社会首先为人们提供了当前生活状况的图片。这种生活方式与世俗主义所描绘的生活方式截然不同。后世俗社会包括三个方面的特征:世俗化进程的延续、宗教公众影响力的持续和多元文化与多元宗教信仰共存的现状。
A post-secular society first provides people with a picture of the current life situation. This situation of living is very different from the situation of life depicted by secularism. A post-secular society includes characteristics of three aspects: the continuation of the secularization process, the persistence of religious public influence, and the current state of coexistence of pluralistic cultures and multiple religious beliefs.
2.1 The continued secularization process持续的世俗化进程
从全球化的角度来看,哈贝马斯(2008a:116;2008b:67)认为,世俗化作为一个社会和历史进程仍在继续。这一进程的继续伴随着西方现代化进程在世界其他地区的展开。对于一个在传统社会中不断发生的世俗化过程,可以从社会结构、社会意识和个体三个层面进行分析。社会结构层面的世俗化表现为一些传统社会结构的解体和新的社会子系统的形成。这些子系统逐渐摆脱了以往传统结构的控制。社会结构世俗化的继续逐渐导致宗教机构与世俗权力的分离。世俗化进程在社会意识层面上也具有全球性的意义,是一种传统的世界观和价值观,它不断受到起源于西方社会的世俗意识的影响。对于这些传统的世界观或宗教信仰,西方世俗意识的影响是外部的。这种外部冲击使原本自给自足、稳定的世界观或宗教信仰逐渐相对化,并最终趋于瓦解(哈贝马斯,2008a:110)。个人层面的世俗化反映在传统世界的绝对性。由于世俗世界观和价值取向的影响,宗教信仰逐渐相对化。人们有越来越多的主观意识和自由意识(哈贝马斯,2008a:109;2008b:61)。
From the perspective of globalization, Habermas (2008a:116; 2008b:67) believes that secularization as a social and historical process still continues. The continuation of this process is accompanied by the unfolding of Western modernization processes in other parts of the world. For a continuous secularization process that takes place in a traditional society, it can be analyzed from three levels: social structure, social consciousness, and individual aspects. The secularization at the level of social structure is manifested as the disintegration of some traditional social structures and the formation of new social sub-systems. These sub-systems gradually get rid of the control of the previous traditional structure. The continuation of the secularization of social structures gradually leads to the separation of religious institutions from secular power. The secularization process at the level of social consciousness also has a global significance, a traditional world outlook and values, it is constantly impacted by the secular consciousness that originated in Western society. For these traditional worldviews or religious beliefs, the impact of secular consciousness from the West is external. This external shock makes the previously self-contained and stable worldview or religious belief gradually relativized, and may eventually tend to disintegrate (Habermas, 2008a:110).The secularization on the individual level is reflected in the fact that the absoluteness of the traditional worldview or religious belief is gradually relativized due to the impact of secular worldview and value orientation. People have more and more subjective awareness and freedom consciousness (Habermas, 2008a:109; 2008b:61).
2.2 Continuity of religious public influence
The second feature of a post-secular society is the persistence of religious public influence. The continuous secularization process on a global scale does not lead to the conclusion of secularism. Instead, along with the secularization process, religious traditions and religious societies continue to exist even in a sense of “rejuvenation” (Habermas, 2008a:102). The continued existence of religious traditions and religious societies in post-secular societies does not mean that they merely linger as pre-modern relics. On the contrary, the existence of religion in a post-secular society actually means that religious beliefs, religious traditions, and religious societies still play an important public influence in modern society and bear indispensable social roles (Habermas, 2003:105). Of course, this public influence and social role of religion manifests itself in both positive and negative forms. In any case, this means that religion has an active vitality in modern society. The phenomena of revival of these religious include not only the revival of certain Protestant sects, the revival of Roman Catholicism, but also the revival of Islam and other traditional religions. These religious revival phenomena seem to go hand in hand with the current secularization process (Habermas, 2008a:113; 2008b:64). This situation is both meaningful and embarrassing for those who have more or less secularistic trend. On the one hand, the society continues to be secular; on the other hand, people have not seen the decline and even disappearance of religions in a society that has continued to be secular. Although the defenders of secularization theory question the nature of phenomena of these religious revival, Berger (1999: 6) reminds people of the following phenomena: the international religious situation is that conservative, orthodox or traditionalist movements are on the rise; on the contrary, those modern religious movements and religious organizations are in decline (Berger, 1999: 6). Although there are still great differences in the interpretation of the phenomenon of religious revival in modern society, religion has not completely withdrawn from the historical stage with the modernization and secularization of a society, this is a social fact. This fact makes people have to admit the fact that in a post-secular society, religion still has important public influence. This makes us have to rethink the complexity of the secularization process and the limitations of various classical secularization theories and new secularization theories (Habermas, 2008a:111; 2008b:59).#p#分页标题#e#
2.3 Diversification
The third feature of a post-secular society is the pluralism of religious beliefs, cultures, and world views. The first two characteristics of a post-secular society, namely the continuation of a secularization process and the persistence of religious public influence, have determined that in a post-secular society, there will inevitably be a diversity of religious beliefs, cultures and worldviews (Bruce, 2011: 47; McLennan, 2015:126). From a geographical point of view, the diversified facts can be understood from the following two aspects. On the one hand, citizens with different cultures and religious traditions inevitably get together in a same political community. In a modern society, there is hardly a country with a single culture or religious belief. On the other hand, at the international and global levels, collisions, conflicts, and exchanges are inevitable between different cultures and religious beliefs. As the secularization process continues, the problem becomes more complicated. For traditional cultures or religious beliefs, the fact of pluralism means that a certain religious tradition has to face other divergent religious traditions, and it also means that they have to face various secular worldviews and cognitive methods (Bruce, 2011: 47; McLennan, 2015:140).
Diversified facts can be explained not only from a geographical point of view, but also from the institutional, social, and individual levels. From an institutional and social perspective, the coexistence of diverse cultures and religious beliefs has made the relationship between secular countries and religions critical. This is because it is directly related to the issue of the source of national solidarity and integration of a political community (Habermas, 2008b: 136). From an individual perspective, the fact of pluralism means that for individuals, diversification of world views and beliefs gives individuals the freedom to choose, practice, and even change their beliefs. The fact of pluralism draws us to notice that there is more than one way to absolute truth. Personally, the fact of pluralism does not only exist between different religious beliefs, but also between religious beliefs and various secular worldviews (Habermas, 2008b: 136).
With regard to the pluralism of culture and religious beliefs, it must also be noted that this diversified fact does not exist in the entire social sphere. Instead, they exist only at certain levels in a society. As far as the social structure and system are concerned, modern Western societies are basically in a similar situation, that is, in the economic field, it is based on money, and in the political field, it takes power as the guide line. Behind these areas is the support of intrinsic, instrumental, functionalist and practical secular rationality (Habermas, 2008b: 136).
3.0 Analysis
The above content analyses the three characteristics of a post-secular society. The following will analyze the reasons and manifestations of the above three characteristics from three aspects, so as to determine whether a post-secular society has come.
3.1 The secularization characteristics of a post-secular society
The reason for why a post-secular society as a living situation is a secular society lies in that religious beliefs have lost their former status and influence to varying degrees, both at the institutional level and at the social and individual level. Not only in developed European and American countries, but also in the third world countries, this assertion has its rationality (Loobuyck and Rummens, 2010: 55). Taking Europe as an example to elaborate, judging from the institutional level, church and secular countries in modern European society have been separated by different external forms, and they have maintained relative independence from each other. One of the consequences of this is that the church can no longer spread and maintain its own beliefs and worldview through institutional institutions. This means that traditional institutional religions will inevitably lose their previous social foundations and benefit safeguard in various degrees in the secular modern society. In this way, church has gradually evolved from a basic social system and organization in the Middle Ages to a sub-system in a modern society (Bruce, 2013:369).
Not only at the institutional level, religion is in a secular context, it is even more so in terms of social awareness and individual level. Bruce (2011:23) came to a basic conclusion after invoking and analyzing statistics from various social surveys that a trend (the decline of Western religions) lasted for a century will continue (Bruce, 2011:23). Bruce's trend of decline in religion refers to that both in western European and in Eastern European societies. Bruce cited a great deal of sociology statistical data to draw the conclusions that, on the one hand, European church attendance has been on a downward trend, while at the same time, the rate of self-believers is on the rise (Bruce, 2011); on the other hand, European Christian church itself (whether it is the Catholic church or the Protestant church) is also undergoing changes. Changes themselves are complex and they can be summarized as internal secularization (Bruce, 2011: 13). On the social level, in the European context, it can be thought as being in a secular society.
3.2 Deficiency of secularization theory
The development of modern science and technology and the strengthening of modern society's rationalization have not completely eliminated religions. On the contrary, in modern society, the influence of religions cannot be ignored. This particular phenomenon makes people have to rethink the problems contained in the secularization theory, especially the narrowness and arbitraryness of secularism (Loobuyck and Rummens, 2010: 55; McLennan, 2010:138). This makes the theoretical basis and internal logic of secularism gradually clarified and criticized. The focus of criticism mainly focuses on the following aspects. First, secularists ignore the special context and the complexity of motivation that arises from the secularization process. Second, secularism simply equates secularization with modernization and then simply contrasts religion with modern society. Finally, on the political level, secularism completely separates the modern democratic political order from religion and ignores the internal connection between the two. In addition, one of the main logics of secularism is that the relationship between reason and faith is a “zero-sum game,” and it is also the main object of questioning and criticism McLennan, 2010:137). The development of this logic is that secularism sets religion as the irrational, superstitious and arbitrary, and sets the secular as the rational, scientific, and democratic McLennan, 2010:129). Because of the above distinction and opposition, secularism will not see the religious factors in the modern society and cultural origin, let alone the positive role played by religion in the process of the formation of modernity. In addition, secularism underestimates the rational factors contained in the major religions of the world. Taking Christianity as an example, the history of the development of Christian theology and teaching is basically the history of apologetics and debate. In this process, on the one hand, Christianity uses rational discourse to debate with heresy and paganism; on the other hand, Christianity also engages in dialogue with the secular society itself. In the process of dialogue and debate, Christianity inevitably has to reflect on its own problems and actively make changes or even reforms. If this aspect is neglected, it will be difficult to understand and explain the history of the Grand Duke Conference, various apologetics, Protestant reforms, and Catholic anti-religious reforms (Casanova, 1994: 78).
 
3.3 Reciprocal learning and critique between rationality and religious belief
Ratzinger (2006: 77-78) pointed out that the process of Western society is a process of mutual critique and mutual absorption between the Christian tradition and the Greek philosophical tradition, and because in history, both rationality and belief constantly show their own limitations and pathologies, so both need to purify each other. This is why reason must also be warned to remain within its proper limits, and reason must learn to listen to the great religious traditions of mankind. If rationality itself is totally refusing to learn this connection, then rationality will become destructive (Loobuyck and Rummens, 2010: 55). In the view of Habermas’, a post-secular society is the living environment in which people exist in and must face, and he proposed, there is a need to learn from each other and critique each other between reason and religious beliefs.
Since the reformation and the enlightenment movement, religions have made changes in the face of the challenges brought about by changes in their living conditions. These changes are mainly manifested in the following aspects. Religious citizens must understand the relationship between doctrine beliefs and secular knowledge from the perspective of their religions. That is, autonomous development of secular knowledge can not conflict with the teachings of their faith. They embed modern natural law and morality in the context of their entire teachings in a convincing manner (Casanova, 1994:93). Religious citizens must take a more rational understanding of other religious worldviews, modern science, positive law and secular morality in the face of challenges. Through reflection, religious citizens recognize that their own religious worldview is only an interpretation of the world, not the world itself. In this way, religious citizens will not regard their own religious worldview as the only correct doctrine, and then regard other worldviews and religious beliefs as mistakes and reject them (McLennan, 2015:138; McLennan, 2010:3).#p#分页标题#e#
The intrinsic relationship between belief and reason, religion, and philosophy makes it impossible for secular citizens to abandon the factors of belief to understand reason itself, because both are intertwined in Western history. Concepts such as autonomy and individuality in Greece or the concept of emancipation and solidarity in Rome have long had the meaning of Christian origin (Cahill, 2001: 236). More and more secular citizens recognize that Christianity in Western modern culture is also a stage and achievement of Western social modernization process, which means that secular citizens cannot view religion from only a certain perspective, such as only recognizing the roles of religion and belief in maintaining social orders while ignoring the connotation of truth and the epistemological status it contains (Cahill, 2001: 236).
3.4 Summary
At present, both at the institutional level and at the social and individual level, religious beliefs have lost their status and influence which they possessed in the past. Not only in the developed countries, but also in the third world countries, this assertion has its rationality. This confirms Habermas’s (2008a:110; 2008b:121) first description of the characteristics of a post-secular society that the secularization process continues in a post-secular society.
Deficiencies in secularization process and theories make religions not disappear but revived in some respects in the course of deepening modern social modernization. This confirms the second description of the characteristics of a post-secular society provided by Habermas (2008a:115; 2008b:128). That is, the persistence of religious public influence. Because both rationality and belief constantly display their own limitations and pathologies, during the current secularization and modernization process, social consensus is formed that secularization is a process of mutual critique and mutual absorption of religion and secular spirit. This social consensus provides the foundation for the diversification of religious beliefs, cultures, and worldviews, which is in line with Habermas’ (2008a:110; 2008b:133) third description of the characteristics of post-secular societies.
5.0 Conclusion
Habermas (2008a:113; 2008b:129) believes the emergence of a ‘post-secular society’, which is also accepted by the author of this study. A post-secular society includes characteristics of three aspects: the continuation of the secularization process, the persistence of religious public influence, and the current state of coexistence of pluralistic cultures and multiple religious beliefs. The author has affirmed the existence of the three characteristics of a post-secular society from three aspects: the lost former status and influence of religious beliefs to varying degrees, deficiencies of secularization processes and theories, secularization is the process of mutual critique and mutual absorption of religion and secular spirit. Thus the author agrees with the view of seeing the emergence of a ‘post-secular society’.
 
References
Berger, P. (1999) Desecularization of the World: A Global Overview, In The Desecularization of  the World: Resurgent Religion and world Politics, Washington, D. C.: Ethics and Policy Center, 23-45.
Berger, P. (2005) The Non-Secularization of the World: Revival of Religion and Global Politics, Shanghai: Ancient Books Publishing House, 405-421.
Bruce, S. (2011) Secularization: In Defense of an Unfashionable Theory. Oxford and Newyork: Oxford University Press, 54-87.
Bruce, S. (2013) ‘Post-Secularity and Religion in Britain: An Empirical Assessment’, Journal of Contemporary Religion, 28:3, 369-384.
Cahill, T. (2001) God Chose Jews -- How a Nomadic People Changed the World, World Knowledge Press, 220-236.
Casanova, J. (1994) Public Religions in the Modern World. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 78-93.
Furani, K. (2015) ‘Is There a Postsecular?’ Journal of the American Academy of Religion, 3(83): 1-26.
Habermas, J. (2003) Faith and Knowledge, In The Future of Human Nature. Cambridge: Polity  Press, 105-121.
Habermas, J. (2008a) ‘Notes on Post-Secular Society’, New Perspectives Quarterly, 25(4): 98-116.
Habermas, J. (2008b) Religion in the Public Sphere, In Between Naturalism and Religion. Cam-
bridge: Polity Press, 58-136.
Loobuyck, P. and Stefan, R. (2010) Beyond Secularization? Notes on Habermas's Account of the Postsecular Society, In Discouring the Post-Secular: Essays on the Habermasian Post-secular Turn, edited by Peter Losonczi and Aakash Singh, Krotenthallergasse and Berlin: LIT, 58-72.
McLennan, G. (2015) ‘Is secularism history?’ Thesis Eleven, 128(1):126-140.
McLennan, G. (2010) ‘The Postsecular Turn’, Theory, Culture & Society, 27(4): 3-20.
Ratzinger, J. C. (2006) That Which Holds the World Together-the Pre-political Moral Foundations of a Free State, In Dialectics of Secularization: on Reason and Religion, edited by Florian Schuller. C. R. V. San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 77-78.
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