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Eminently readable and historically rich, this book acts as a corrective to a simplistic view of the German intellectual inheritance operative in Kant's work as merely "Leibnizian" or narrowly rationalistic.
Oakeshott used the term "ideology" to describe the attempted application of this rationalistic style to political activity.
The second part of his thesis, which was developed in the rest of the book, was that the idea of progress was essentially bound to the intellectual atmosphere of the modern world as one continuous rationalistic movement beginning with Francis Bacon and Rene Descartes in the seventeenth century.
Notice that Oakeshott, in resolutely eschewing the abstract, rationalistic ontological presuppositions underwriting the "lust for change" informing "the progressive" or future-centered orientation of "the innovator," is improvising on just those themes to which Burke first gave expression nearly two hundred years earlier.
More recently, the pessimistic secular interpretation, emanating from a once fashionable belief in a meaningless universe, has been equally rationalistic.
Traditionalist conservatives in the vein of Russell Kirk may or may not share that incredulity--depending on whether Kirk's belief that "society is a spiritual reality, possessing an eternal life" counts as a metanarrative--but they find rationalistic system building equally distasteful, fearing that it strips the mystery and feeling from life.
The whole process, he points out, "results in a massive, rationalistic devaluation of human life," while the populace is reduced to docility, and the belief that "state-funded science and medical research [can] render safe any degree of self-indulgence.
According to this narrative, the Barthian legacy was in many respects an overreaction to a rationalistic and modernized conception of natural law that was certainly not present at the dawn of the Reformation, and certainly not reflective of mainline Protestantism's potential not only to incorporate natural law theology, but even to make an original contribution.
One reason why mainstream historians tend to regard scholastic economics as "an afterthought" is to circumvent philosophical and historical counterexamples to the enlightenment redefinition of economics along secular, descriptive, and rationalistic lines.
The rationalistic god of the enlightenment keeps falling down of his own accord and, long before Richard Dawkins (and John Humphrys), Marx disposed of god as the"'opiate of the people" that kills the urge for justice, Freud disposed of god as the comfort blanket that keeps believers and seekers immature (I pray but nothing happens?
Shaw contextualizes the later, more rationalistic critique of miracle accounts by describing the previous popular accounts in some detail.
Some embrace a "Cartesian rationalistic current" (p.