by Daniel Lattier
The common narrative we hear today is that the world is becoming increasingly secularized, and that traditional religion is becoming a relic of the past. But there’s a counter-narrative that’s gaining currency, namely, that secularism is in crisis, and that the world is on the cusp of becoming more religious.
The spiritual head of the Eastern Orthodox Church—Patriarch Bartholomew I—recently gave voice to this counter-narrative at an international peace conference held in Cairo. There he said:
“Paradoxically, instead of the modernistic expectation of a ‘post-religious secular age,’ our epoch is in fact becoming a ‘post-secular period’ or even one of ‘religious explosion.’ Religion appears as a central dimension of human life, both at the personal and social levels. It claims a public role, and it participates in all central contemporary discourses.”
Bartholomew then identified several reasons why secular modernity has been unsuccessful in its attempt to rid itself of religion.