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Life Arts    H1'ed 4/23/14

The Theocons Are Coming! The Theocons Are Coming!

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But this strikes me as a very cumbersome expression. It seems to suggest that we have entered a post-Protestant era. But there are still many Protestants in the United States today. Does Bottum actually think that American Protestants are going to rally around the idea of a post-Protestant ethic? But how about a post-Catholic ethic?


In a sense, Nietzsche's Beyond Good and Evil represents a possible post-Protestant ethic, or at least one possible version of a post-Protestant ethic.


A Jungian approach to a post-Protestant ethic can be found in Erich Neumann's book Depth Psychology and a New Ethic (1969). Neumann's new ethic is the ethic that emerges in people after they have dealt with their own personal shadow. (Jung, like Nietzsche, was the son of a Protestant pastor. But Neumann was a Jew who lived in Israel.)


But I am reasonably certain that Bottum has not dealt with his own personal shadow. For this reason, he should not be taken seriously -- just as the Roman Catholic bishops should not be taken seriously for the same reason.


The Roman Catholic bishops and the practicing Catholics today who follow their dictates represent the spirit of the Old World. But we Americans today live in the New World. As a result, we Americans should work diligently to avoid being infected with the spirit of the Old World embodied in the Roman Catholic Church today and its outworn Tradition of thought.

(Article changed on April 24, 2014 at 14:02)

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Thomas James Farrell is professor emeritus of writing studies at the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD). He started teaching at UMD in Fall 1987, and he retired from UMD at the end of May 2009. He was born in 1944. He holds three degrees from Saint Louis University (SLU): B.A. in English, 1966; M.A.(T) in English 1968; higher education, 1974. On May 16, 1969, the editors of the SLU student newspaper named him Man of the Year, an honor customarily conferred on an administrator or a faculty member, not on a graduate student -- nor on a woman up to that time. He is the proud author of the book (more...)

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