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Fundamentalism or TraditionChristianity after Secularism$
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Aristotle Papanikolaou and George E. Demacopoulos

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780823285792

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823285792.001.0001

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Fundamentalists, Rigorists, and Traditionalists: An Unorthodox Trinity

Fundamentalists, Rigorists, and Traditionalists: An Unorthodox Trinity

(p.165) Fundamentalists, Rigorists, and Traditionalists: An Unorthodox Trinity
Fundamentalism or Tradition

R. Scott Appleby

Fordham University Press

Living with paradox and uncertainty is inevitable for those who are ordered and mastered by the God who is Absolute Mystery. Fundamentalism is not a traditional religious way of being, nor is it an orthodox mode of religiosity. Educated and formed epistemologically under the banner of techno-scientific modernity, fundamentalist actors approach religion with a rational and instrumental view. In response to their modern anxiety, they turn to absolutism, dualism, and millennialism to persuade their secular and religious peers of the urgency of the situation for religion in the world. Indeed, the fundamentalist mode of religiosity in the twenty-first century is critically engaged with secularism. The antidote to fundamentalism, then, is stubborn, principled and creative fidelity to the religious tradition in all its mystery, complexity, nuance, fluidity, and richness. Therefore, the retrospective emphasis on tradition of Orthodox and Catholic Christians makes “fundamentalism” a non-starter. Instead, Appleby argues that we may more accurately speak of “rigorists” and “traditionalists” among the Orthodox, which movements have been marked by their rejection of modernity and not just selective use or rejection of modern ideas and technologies.

Keywords:   dualism, fundamentalism, millennialism, mystery, Orthodoxy, rigorism, tradition, Westoxication

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