Original Research

Postsecular spirituality, engaged hermeneutics, and Charles Taylor’s notion of hypergoods

Andries G. Van Aarde
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 65, No 1 | a166 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v65i1.166 | © 2009 Andries G. Van Aarde | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 18 April 2009 | Published: 07 August 2009

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Andries G. Van Aarde, University of Pretoria, South Africa

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This essay sets out to argue that postsecular spirituality is about the quest for hypergoods within today’s mass populist- and consumerist-oriented world. It shows that people who consider themselves to be spiritual not only have many values in their lives, but rank some values higher than others, with some being ranked as being of supreme importance, the so-called hypergoods. Such ethics has an interpersonal character, and in Christian circles this reopens the issue of biblical hermeneutics, especially the phenomenon of conflicting interpretations. Against the background of the various options of being religious in the secular age, the essay focuses on Charles Taylor’s view of the discovery of spirituality in a posttheistic world and his emphasis on the love of God and the ethics of justice as hypergoods.


religious orientation and spirituality; morality and the ethics of justice; Charles Taylor’s theo-philosophy; secularisation; neoorthodoxy


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