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Sense in the broad sense

12/3/2008 - The Nature of Religion I. Forgivingness as a speech act: theological or psychological concept?

Although the title of this post might seem to implicate a boring academic topic, I am sure that this type of question is most relevant nowadays. When Samuel Huntington described our era in his work 'The Clash of Civilizations' in terms of oppositions between religious communities, he was part of the beginnings of a lively academic and political debate which centers around the crucial question: What is religion? Although everyone seems to have a certain opinion in this discours, whether about a particular religion (Geert Wilders and the Islam, for example) or about religion as a phenomenon, the question about the nature of religion seems to stay unanswered and, even worse, undiscussed - a surprising conclusion in a time of great religious temperament and even violence.
On my weblog I will post several articles on this topic, which might inspire you to form a more truthful impression of the problems underlying the current debate. The first article, here beforehand, will be about a concept which is claimed by most christians as being typically christian: forgiving.
In short, I will 1) argue that forgiving is a so-called speech act, by summarizing the theory of speech acts and relating it to this concept. Herewith, I want to try to make the concept of forgiving as clear as possible. I will try to elucidate it in various aspects, among which the ethical en the sociological. 2) determinate whether forgiving is a unique christian concept in contrast with other religions and 3) pose the question whether forgiving should be, or is, a psychological concept (and thus, is inherent in modernity, although it might stem from more ancient resources) or if it exclusively belongs to the domain of the theologians and therefore, christians.
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About Me

On this weblog I will post some short articles regularly. As a dutch philosophy student with a specialization in religion, music, literature and politics I try to make some sense out of the world - in the broad sense. I intend not to write only about the meaning of life and all that sort of floating abstractions, although some writing on this topic will prove unavoidable. Evidently, it's one of the most annoying diseases of our times. As a method, I will try to make sense of events, shifts and other actualities which are current today. For example, in world politics, art and science. My reflections will be deep and shallow, thorough and airy, artistic and academic, abstract and concrete. There will be analysis, poems, stories, speculations, columns and essays. For short: I just write. If you like to read it, read it; if you don't, don't.

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