The Future of Religion

My Barnes & Noble order came yesterday; I’m about halfway through The Future of Religion already. A few choice quotes…

Gianno Vattimo:

“The existential analytic… makes us aware that knowledge is always interpretation and nothing but this. Things appear to us in the world only because we are in their midst and always already oriented toward seeking a specific meaning for them. In other words, we possess a preunderstanding that makes us interested subjects rather than neutral screens for an objective overview.””…postmodern nihilism constitutes the actual truth of Christianity.”

“…the redemptive meaning of the Christian message makes its impact precisely by dissolving the claims of objectivity…”

“…no experience of truth can exist without some kind of participation in a community… truth comes about as the ongoing construction of communities that coincide in a ‘fusion of horizons’… truth does not consist in the correspondence between propositions and things. Even when we speak of correspondence, we have in mind propositions verfied in the context of paradigms, the truth of which consists above all in their being shared by a community.”

Richard Rorty:

“…the quest for truth and knowledge is no more and no less than the quest for intersubjective agreement. The epistemic arena is a public space, a space from which religion can and should retreat.”

Santiago Zabala:

“…truth does not occur at the level of facts but only at that of propositions.””To surpass metaphysics means, according to Rorty and Vattimo, to stop inquiring into what is real and what is not; it means recognizing that something is better understood the more one is able to say about it. Problems are resolved with irony, privately exercised vis-á-vis one’s own predecessors rather than vis-á-vis their relation to truth.”

“The space left open by metaphysics must not be filled up by new philosophies claiming to exhibit some foundation external to the ‘conversation.'”