Chapter

Starting on the Path to Secularity

Richard K. Fenn

in Beyond Idols

Published in print July 2001 | ISBN: 9780195143690
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199834174 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0195143698.003.0003
Starting on the Path to Secularity

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Secularization has democratized the legitimate interpretation of personal experience and strengthened the authority of the individual over and against the church and the state. Since the thirteenth century, the church has been losing its monopoly on the interpretation of spiritual experience in dreams and visions and in encounters with the dead. A highly complex and secularized society has multiple and open channels for encounters between the living and the dead. Democratic politics and natural science have their origins in movements to demystify and popularize discourse about the dead and about the unconscious.

Keywords: church; dead; dreams; politics; sacred; secular; society; state; unconscious; visions

Chapter.  8388 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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