Barth and Habermas on the Changing Role of Religion in a Postnational Constellation
Rafael D. Pangilinan
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Currently, religion and globalization seem to be working towards opposite ends. As Mark Juergensmeyer, author of Religion in Global Civil Society,has noted, while religiously invoked terrorism fragments society, the Internet,cell phones and the media industry foster the formation of an increasingly global social fabric. But religion is not a single faceted phenomenon. As much as there are prophets of violence such as the Abu Sayyaf leaders, there are prophets of peace and reconciliation. This paper shall thus delve on how a civil society might be configured in relation to the inherent ambiguity surrounding religious traditions, and how might Christian traditions make a positive contribution to this context. To answer these questions I will articulate a dialogue between Jürgen Habermas’ theory of civil society and the politico-ethical theology of Karl Barth.

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