I was thinking today about two disturbing trends in our world, i.e., the rise of secularism with the concomitant rise in religious fundamentalism. The two seem so unrelated, at least at first glance, but the more I think about it, the more it seems true that one gives rise to the other.
I’m not going to call one the chicken and the other the egg. I don’t know if there is a precendential relationship in time. What seems evident though is the concurrent rise of both of these errors.
Maybe it would be advantageous for all the tried and true secularists, who adhere to a philosophy rooted in phenomenology and subjectivity, to consider that they are fueling the fire of fundamentalism. I suspect they wouldn’t accept that consideration, but I encourage them nonetheless to open their minds some to the possibility.
Likewise, all those fiery fundamentalists (for whom black is always black and white is always white and whose god seems to be dogma rather than the rule of loving law) may do themselves a favor by wondering if they accomplish little other than instill fear and dread in those who listen to them.
Isn’t it true that Jesus was neither a secularist nor a fundamentalist? He railed against both, and died living out love. He knew the presence of sin and the wrongness of relativism. He died at the hands of the secularists of his time, the Romans. He had some very hard words for the fundamentalists of his faith.
Jesus was a religious man in the real sense of that term. Jesus was the Divine Son who revealed to us the truth of human nature and society.