One can always tell when there is a religion in place in two ways:
1) The person will declare what they are and what they believe through a Name. For examples; Christianity. But also, Realist. On one hand we have Baptist; and on the other hand we have Existentialism.
The second way you can tell if a religion or religious belief is in place is that they will deny that it is religious.
This is where we find “philosophy” becoming a kind of religious faith. Through not witnessing its own operations honestly. Through the contradiction involved with a particular manner of coming upon reality.
In general, philosophers wish to retain the title or the name “philosophy” to mean Deconstruction, which is to say, to indicate pure process as opposed to any set of dogmas. Philosophers as a contemporary or modern sense (in the least philosophical meaning possible) speak of this pure process as a way to decode what is otherwise dogma or what we have found in the past 40 or 50 (80?) years as ideology encoded into discourse, but as well a name for a particular type of thinking (let us philosophize about religion; and or, the philosophy of computer programming; etc…)
But I ask, where did we get these ideas about what philosophy is?
The answer of the latter ‘kind’ of thinking is just a label for The kind of thinking that moves more deeply into a subject matter.
Of the former, The typical answer would be a kind of historical library of authors’ works. … actually I’m not sure. And this is exactly what I mean to indicate so far as philosophy becoming a kind of religious faith: There is no reason why we are currently involved in a “post truth” situation – the reason is because that’s what the theorists say. And I’m going to say something that I’m sure will arouse immediate disclaimers, whether it be in the philosophers mind only, or whether people actually say something about it (I will bet it will only occur in peoples minds, because in the same way that Christians are confined to interpreting the Bible is specific ways, so it is with conventional philosophy; the faith involved with philosophy will not allow them to make a comment upon it; one can only dismiss it) —
The reason why we might be In a post truth situation of reality (or whatever) is because the ‘clergy’ of modern philosophy have told us how dogma is to be assembled in order to create a proper meaning for reality. Much as the Scholastic of the Medieval period did for Christianity.
Yet there is a problem with the method…
We find a bookend to this faith with what we know as postmodernism. The whole idea behind postmodernism is that it argues it self into perpetual opening. After postmodernism no one is allowed to identify that which is being identified.
But i’m just about to stick my fist up into that opening (screw the hammer!😝):
Typically, we use the term “post modern” to identify a particular set of authors, a particular psychological mode, a particular set of ideas, a particular period in intellectual time, amongst other ideas. But all of these post modern ideas function together so that no one can ever say that ” post modern” is a set of beliefs for method. They can be identified to individual discourses which loosely (arguably) fall under the rubric of PM, but never as the definition of how theory must function as a methodology.
It’s fundamental and contradictory premises are involved in the assertion of it being a critique of what is modern. But I would submit that regardless of such fictional postures, the postmodern is intimately intertwined with modernity and at that, to establish for us a set of instructions by which to know what is real. In fact, I would say if you read a few of the well-known postmodern authors, this is exactly what they’re saying .
Nevertheless, This is what philosophy has become; no longer can you identify philosophy along a particular agenda because the postmodern sense of philosophy will immediately disrupt that conceptual territory, to thereby throw off any assertions that it is indeed developing into a dogmatic religion. It’s exactly like if you are not Christian and you argue with a Christian about the meaning of the Bible; you can’t get anywhere because they already know what the Bible means, And will assert that meaning at every corner and claim that you are not understanding what the Bible really says and will assert that meaning at every corner and claim that you are not understanding what the Bible really says.
In my second book “the moment of decisive significance: A heresy”, I approach this dilemma.
We even use the definition of religion to keep philosophy from being labeled as a religion. In general we identify religion as a set of beliefs and a set of practices. And then somehow philosophy avoids being a set of practices accompanied by a specific set of beliefs.
And yet I have identified philosophy just now. For, what is a set of beliefs? It is ideas accompanied by behavior. And what are practices but things that we do that are accompanied by a set of ideas?
It seems to me that our definition of religion speaks for itself but we don’t want to admit, as philosophers, that philosophy indeed answers to this very criteria, this very definition of religion. Postmodern is a set of ideas which motivate as they support a set a practices: Philosophy upholds a certain set of ideas set down in “scriptural” canon which proscribe how not only the philosopher – as a cleric of the religion of the true – but how now everyone is supposed to see and behave in reality. It’s PM theology has come true!
But we can go even further. I would submit that there is a reason why continental philosophy is generally centered around French thinkers: Freedom.
It is the French, not the Americans, but the French who tore down previous aristocratic structures and have ever since been attempting to justify existence in the context of an absolute freedom. And this is the context and justification of (ontological) philosophy now: it poses as though it is saying something, but what it is talking about no one can say.
If that isn’t another way of describing an Absolute Ineffable God — I mean. Come on.
We find it able to be identified as a system of beliefs and practices due to the bookend that we call Postmodernism.
And, my upcoming book “the philosophical hack: the concluding unscientific postscript to event” goes even further:
It is not that PM is wrong or incorrect. It is not even to argue that religion is a bad or incorrect manner or function. To suggest that identifying Philosophy as a religious effort is not indicting it as wrong or as something that needs be corrected; such a suggestion would be merely to suggest we need a better religion. Rather, we are concerned with it’s opposite: By the ability invested of itself to define subjects to specific parameters, it allows for a definition where by a science of philosophy may be determined.
Thanks for listening.