From 2021 to 2022

In 2021, I published some papers on the religion of human rights, on secular religions and the religious-secular divide, the myth of the secular state, and the proliferation of secular religions. The latter is also part of a special issue I edited with Ferenc Hörcher and contains many interesting contributions by such authors as William Cavanaugh, Hans Otto Seitschek, Phillip Blond, Valerio Severino, and Bogdan Szlachta.

As for conferences, I had the pleasure to attend two Central Slavic Conferences at Saint Louis University, first with a paper on the secular religion of “actually existing” socialism in March, and then with another on Bertrand Russell’s and Reinhold Niebuhr’s account of communism as a religious idea.

I also presented a paper on transhumanism’s prophetic future at the IPSA world congress, on patriotism as a political religion in Tartu, Estonia, and on the interconnections of secular religions in Warsaw. The last two will also appear in print next year. As well as a former paper of mine on conservative orators in Restoration France, Louis de Bonald and François-René de Chateaubriand.

I will also present a paper on the Christian just war tradition at the University of Helsinki in March, and on religious nationalism in the 19th century at the University of Oxford in April. I am also invited to write a contribution to the “Yearbook of Political Theology” (published by the University of Trento) about the concept of political religion.

2022 is also the year when I will hopefully complete my catalog of secular religions, which seems all the more urgent since the topic seems to be everywhere nowadays. But this should be obvious to anyone who has been following this blog so far.

Until then, a happy new year!

A non-secular age

Does it sound familiar?

“It’s part of something I’ve noticed more and more in the modern world, appearing in all sorts of newspaper rumours and conversational catchwords; something that’s arbitrary withouth being authoritative. People readily swallow the untested claims of this, that, or the other. It’s drowning all your old rationalism and scepticism, it’s coming in like a sea; and the name of it is superstition. (…) It’s the first effect of not believing in God that you lose your common sense, and can’t see things as they are. Anything that anybody talks about, and says there is a good deal in it, extends itself indefinitely like a vista in a nightmare (…) and all because you are frightened of four words: ‘He was made Man.’ “

Could be the motto of any meditations on non-secularization.