Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Sacred Web:Interesting view of fundamentalism as reductionism - by M. Ali Lakhani

From this it can be seen that “fundamentalism”, as the term is defined here, is a form of reductionism—the “spirit” reduced to the “letter”, multiple expressions of Truth reduced to one. But, it may be objected, surely all orthodox doctrines are reductionist by virtue of their very orthodoxy. And here it becomes important to distinguish between “orthodoxy”—or “right thinking” according to the doctrines and principles of traditional metaphysics—and “fundamentalism”. Where fundamentalism isolates or ignores aspects of reality, mistaking the part for the whole, orthodoxy, by contrast—though it may emphasize a particular part—views reality as a whole, embracing all its aspects. These aspects, though they may appear to be opposed, are reconciled and accommodated within the traditional “principle of complementarity”, which regards reality as a synthesis of polarities, a coincidentia oppositorum. To claim that orthodoxy amounts to reductionism is to fail to perceive any distinction between dogma (the necessary component of doctrine—necessary as a corollary of transcendence) and dogmatism (the fallacy of doctrine, deriving from its reductionist tendency). This is one of the errors of post-modernist deconstructionism.

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