Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Traditional Values in a Modern World

I've recently been reading Fundamentalism: A Very Short Introduction, Malise Ruthven, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2004, 2007. You should read this book, whether you are a believer, a traditionalist, a humanist - this book has a message for you.

Ruthven's main thesis is that Fundamentalism is an expression of traditional religious reactive experience to a modern, multicultural world. It's a world that's full of new, unimagined choices, and it's a very different world than that described and prescribed by tradtional belief and practice.

Ruthven describes the ingredients of Fundamental psychology and behavior that encompass Islam, Judaism, and Christianity, and also Hinduism and Bhuddism. He points out the similarities between Protestant Biblical inerrancy and Roman Catholic integralism. He packs a lot of information and analysis into 136 pages.