In an interview on The Immanent Frame, Jürgen Habermas discusses the postsecular condition, or the acknowledgement that we live in a world in which religions are to stay. At one point, he considers the current state of affairs.
It is also in connection with this widespread push toward reflection that we have to view the progressive disintegration of traditional, popular piety. Two specifically modern forms of religious consciousness emerged from this: one the one hand, a fundamentalism that either withdraws from the modern world or turns aggresively toward it; on the other, a reflective faith that relates itself to other religions and respects the fallible insights of the institutionalized sciences as well as human rights. This faith is still anchored in the life a congregation and should not be confused with the new, deinstitutionalized forms of a fickle religiosity that has withdrawn entirely into the subjective.
This strikes me as a critical stance of Habermas towards those contemporary forms of religiosity than can be grouped under headers as ’something-ism’ (in Dutch: ‘ietsisme’), progressive spirituality, pan(en)theism, or other kinds of non-institutionalized, personal forms of spirituality. I don’t know: I think it’s pretty easy to be condescending towards these forms of spirituality (to describe them as “fickle”, and “withdrawn into the subjective”), which nevertheless are adhered to by an increasing number of people in the West. I don’t see how, regarding unanswerable questions of the nature of the universe, consciousness, the existence of a god, and so on, “the life of a congregation” can help you, other than in prescribing norms and offering a safe haven. Of course the last is important, but primarily in a humanly, social way.
Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin didn’t cage her answer when pressed Sunday morning as to whether she would consider a run for president in 2012.
“I would, I would if I believe that is the right thing to do for our country and the Palin family. Certainly I would do so,” she told “Fox News Sunday,” in an interview that was taped before she addressed a Tea Party convention the night before. “I think that it would be absurd to not consider what it is that I could potentially do to help our country … . I won’t close a door that perhaps could be open for me in the future.”