Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1739244
 
 

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Religious Truth, Pluralism, and Secularization: The Shaking Foundations of American Religious Liberty


Daniel O. Conkle


Indiana University Maurer School of Law

2011

Cardozo Law Review, Vol. 32, 2011
Indiana Legal Studies Research Paper No. 221

Abstract:     
In this Essay, I recount John Locke’s 1689 Letter Concerning Toleration and explain how religious liberty continues to rest on Lockean and related justifications. These various justifications depend in part on religious-moral reasoning (both Christian and non-Christian) and in part on political-pragmatic considerations. I then discuss recent and ongoing developments in the American religious landscape, including a radical increase in religious diversity, the modernization of traditional faiths, the individualization or "spiritualization" of religion, and the increasing secularization of individual belief structures. I suggest that these developments, over time, may seriously threaten the underlying religious-moral and political-pragmatic foundations of religious liberty and therefore America’s commitment to religious liberty as a fundamental value. If I am correct, the long-term future of American religious liberty may be in peril.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 27

Keywords: Constitutional Law, Constitutional Interpretation, Religious Liberty, First Amendment, Free Exercise Clause, John Locke, Religious Perspectives on Religious Liberty

JEL Classification: K08, K18, K19, K38, K39

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Date posted: January 13, 2011 ; Last revised: July 12, 2013

Suggested Citation

Conkle, Daniel O., Religious Truth, Pluralism, and Secularization: The Shaking Foundations of American Religious Liberty (2011). Cardozo Law Review, Vol. 32, 2011; Indiana Legal Studies Research Paper No. 221. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1739244

Contact Information

Daniel O. Conkle (Contact Author)
Indiana University Maurer School of Law ( email )
211 S. Indiana Avenue
Bloomington, IN 47405
United States
(812) 855-4331 (Phone)
(812) 855-0555 (Fax)
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