Postsecularism in Habermas: A Clear Distinction

October 13, 2013 § Leave a comment

I love and admire clear thinking…and I agree with Jurgen Habermas’s description of the post secular here from a recent interview:

the expression “postsecular” is not a genealogical but a sociological predicate. I use this expression to describe modern societies that have to reckon with the continuing existence of religious groups and the continuing relevance of the different religious traditions, even if the so- cieties themselves are largely secularized. Insofar as I describe as “postsecular,” not society it- self, but a corresponding change of consciousness in it, the predicate can also be used to refer to an altered self-understanding of the largely secularized societies of Western Europe, Canada, or Australia. This is the cause of your misunderstanding. In this case, “postsecular” refers, like “postmetaphysical,” to a caesura in the history of mentality. But the difference is that we use the sociological predicate as a description from the observer’s perspective, whereas we use the ge- nealogical predicate from the perspective of a one who shares in the goal of self-understanding.”

The full interview is available on The Immanent Frame:



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