Culture wars against religion and a gathering of triangulated responses to them

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Ralph G. O'Sullivan


This article brings together four triangulated sets of core values and beliefs as tools that religious adherents, or believers, can use when faced with culture wars or social attacks against them. The principles contained in the sets of ideas can transcend faiths and denominations, but they were developed within Roman Catholicism and Anglicanism, and are credited to St. Benedict's rules of monasticism, the individual teachings of Anglican theologians Richard Hooker and C.E. Raven, and the modern cursillo movement within the Roman Catholic and Episcopal denominations. While the expression "culture wars" is considered to be a modern phenomenon, social attacks against religions are not, and can be considered as elements of social conflict with one notable exception. Traditional
social conflict theories make ample use of such expressions as groups, parties, and coalitions, suggesting united memberships, united beliefs, and coordinated efforts. Modern culture wars against religion, however, seem to be waged by amorphous bodies of critics without uniform beliefs between them, trying to discredit an equally unshaped body of believers with diverse theological, liturgical, and canonical traditions.

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