An Essay Against Secular Order

Journal of Religious Ethics 15 (2):199 - 224 (1987)
Abstract
Salvation is neither "individual" nor "social" but concerns insertion into an ecclesial narrative. This conclusion invites a series of metanarrative considerations by which, in turn, the "narrative ecclesiology" of Henri de Lubac is shown to be too apolitical in comparison with that of Augustine, Augustine's too resigned to the permanence of two cities compared with that of Hegel, and He- gel's too suppressive of the salvific viability of a non-coercive order compared with that of PierreSimon Ballanche. In a corrected form, Augustine's philoso- phy of history outlines the basic narrative conditions for salvation, and this, rather than the metanarratives of enlightenment, gives the true possibility of social critique.
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