A neoplatonic dialogue in two parts
Part I: The search for a new spirituality for the global civil society
Abstract: The Paper gives, in form of a didactic-critical dialogue, a first summary of 15 years of international research and teaching of the author about this subject. The main focus is on investigating the tendencies in the late works of main postmodern thinkers like Jacques Derrida, Jean Francois Lyotard, Helene Cixous, Gilles Deleuze, Felix Guattari, Michel Foucault, Paul Feyerabend and others, to re-spiritualize their basic thoughts, searching for the â€œabsolute secret that cannot be broght into language, but must be protected from languageâ€? (Derrida) going back into traditional religious bindings, or searching for the dimension of the â€œNot-Iâ€? (Lyotard) and the â€œinaudible presenceâ€? (Lyotard) through the experience of â€œthe black ecstasy of the voidâ€? (Lyotard). The dialogue, in platonic style, tries first to describe and understand these tendencies, including their hidden perspectives, desires and fears, citing the authors and their main thoughts; it than gives and outline of a positive perspective, how the tendencies of late postmodern thinkers may form a necessary basis for the developement of a truly rational, scientific spirituality for the enlightend (aufgeklÃ¤rt) global civil society, in a progressive, not regressive way. Central for the argumentation are two main points: first, the concept of â€œvoidâ€? that stay at the center of all late postmodern thinkers as critical-productive dimension of spirituality, a dimension, that opens up only after deconstruction is fully and radically done; second, the difference between the mainly regressive spirituality of the global renaissance of religions after 1989-91 on one hand, and the mainly progressive rational spirituality of late postmodernity at the other hand. Finally, the dialogue offers perspectives for the developement of the second kind of contemporary spirituality, which tries to depart from the mainly negative, deconstructive and proto-spiritual bases of late postmodernity, to make one step further – not to go back behind the achievements of postmodernity like some tendencies in the framework of the world wide renaissance of confessional religions.