Reason and Religion in Rawls: Voegelin’s Challenge

Philosophia 40 (2):237-252 (2012)
  Copy   BIBTEX


This article argues that we must abandon the still predominant view of modernity as based upon a separation between the secular and the religious - a “separation” which is allegedly now brought into question again in “postsecularity”. It is more meaningful to start from the premise that religion and politics have always co-existed in various fields of tension and will continue to do so. The question then concerns the natures and modalities of this tension, and how one can articulate a publically grounded reason with reference to it. It will first be argued that this question cannot be articulated, let alone fully answered, from the position developed by John Rawls. A different approach will then be developed, building on the writings of Eric Voegelin. This involves a much more serious engagement with the classical tradition in thought and philosophy than found in Rawls. It also implies much more than a “pragmatic” recognition of religion as a possible source for overlapping consensus, since for Voegelin a true, balanced rationality can only depart from an experientially grounded encounter with the transcendent.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 84,108

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles


Added to PP

53 (#243,987)

6 months
1 (#511,561)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

Political Liberalism.John Rawls - 1993 - Columbia University Press.
The law of peoples.John Rawls - 1999 - Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press. Edited by John Rawls.
Political Liberalism.J. Rawls - 1995 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 57 (3):596-598.
On the genealogy of morality.Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche - 2007 - New York: Cambridge University Press. Edited by Keith Ansell-Pearson & Carol Diethe.

View all 17 references / Add more references