Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Religion to Find its Way Back to Public Life! - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
Select Page

The secular academic theories have represented an intellectual map for the modern western mind and still represent a significant trend in the political, social, and religious sciences and the modern socio-political sciences.

Different proposals discussing this context have maintained their theorist’s strength through a group of philosophers, intellects, and political scientists who focused on secularism and political path of the religion in societies. Marcel Gauchet is considered among the most prominent contemporary philosophers who defended the empowerment of the knowledge-based theorizing of secularism; he joined the “disenchantment of the world” theory created by Max Weber.

Gauchet’s interest in the political and religious beliefs and the relation between both of them was the reason behind his major in philosophy and history. He began his research at the Centre de Recherches Politiques Raymond Aron by defending the thesis “The Disenchantment of the World: A Political History of Religion” in a book he released in 1985 and many other books till 2013.

The French philosopher mainly discusses religion in the contemporary world and its creation and impact on the future and dynamics of the religion. He considers that the era of Western modernism, particularly the European modernism is the time of separation from religion. In fact, Gauchet sees that secularism has had a Christian origin as, according to him, modernism is not an ideology that emerged from political modernism and not cosmopolitan representations a philosopher isolated from the European reality and its community’s developments in the era of fundamentalist conflicts and the return of religion to the same Western entourage.

No separation with faith

Therefore, Gauchet sees that the “The Disenchantment of the World” thesis and the marginalization of religion indicate the separation from the religion itself and not the breach of faith in God. According to him, along with the religious reform, the modern politics has appeared and created the concept of modern state over a whole century, which shows how a religious and political path can completely change the facts of faith.

Fundamentalists…and the world

This historical path of religion and ideologies should not be understood as the defeat of religion in the contemporary reality. The religious belief still draw its path without losing its implicit status in social interactions in the time of modernism and secular individuality. This status was emphasized through the emergence of many religious fundamentalists that differs from the traditional religion.

However, Guachet considers that the return of religion to the community of individualism today serve fundamentalisms, which succeed in attracting the young generation stuck between the belonging to oneself and the belonging to the group. On the social level, this confusion can explain the attraction of the French youth toward terrorism under the patronage of ISIS and based on concepts like the “Caliphate” and “Jihad”.

Youth and Terrorism

Therefore, efforts should focus on eradicating the phenomenon of terrorism amid youth, and that can be achieved through supporting the individual so it can prove him in a complicated society of different interactions.