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Estrangement and Unity. Are Human Beings Estranged in Essence?. Is it possible to reconcile racial differences? Harmony and integration or uneasiness and suspicion? Individuality versus community Hobbes – psychological individualism – ontological separation as part of materialist philosophy

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Estrangement and unity l.jpg

Estrangement and Unity


Are human beings estranged in essence l.jpg

Are Human Beings Estranged in Essence?

  • Is it possible to reconcile racial differences? Harmony and integration or uneasiness and suspicion?

  • Individuality versus community

  • Hobbes – psychological individualism – ontological separation as part of materialist philosophy

  • Aristotle – man is a political animal and only a beast or a god can live outside the bounds of society


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If human beings are not estranged in essence, why are there so many divisions and conflicts among them?

  • St Augustine – Original Sin – human will – unbridgeable state without Grace - Conservative

  • Rousseau – Institutions of property and centralized power – humans can overcome this estrangement - Radical


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Can Estrangement Be Overcome through Reason?

  • “Come, let us reason together” – the motto of the West

  • Can reason subordinate the superior? – Callicles and Thrasymachus

  • Reason as the basis of community – Plato – the Stoics

  • Edmund Burke – Customs, prejudice and traditions are superior to reason – estrangement is overcome through adherence to ancient customs, traditions, and institutions


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Can Estrangement Be Overcome through Reason?

  • Moral absolutism versus moral relativism

  • Uniformity versus organic unity

  • Radicalism versus conservatism

  • Feminism embraces intuition above rationality – the specific versus the universal


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Is Religion in Some Form Needed for Overcoming Estrangement?

  • The power of humanism and the rejection of religion

  • Unity among human beings depends upon unity with the divine – Classical and Christian philosophy

  • Platonic-Stoic bridge with the divine relies on human initiative

  • Christianity – seeks God’s action to bridge a gap unbridgeable by human efforts


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Is Religion in Some Form Needed for Overcoming Estrangement?

  • Fyodor Dostoevsky contrasts man-god and God-man

  • The man-god will not be compassionate but will be perverse and destructive

  • The God-man/Christ – Divine companionship saves us from this dark abyss – rejection of Christ sends us to our doom


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Should All People’s Be United in a Single Global Society?

  • Small Is Beautiful – Athens – Rousseau

  • Universal Empire – Romans – Christians – Mongols

  • Nation- State – Modern Solution – GWF Hegel


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Should All Class Distinctions Be Abolished?

  • Radical – Marx

  • Conservative – Burke

  • Liberal – Roosevelt and Kennedy


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