By The Hedgehog Review, Spring & Summer 2006 Volume Eight Numbers One & Two

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As I show below, it can be explained by fundamental features of the latter sort of society. 1 All I can do here is offer a few illustrative facts, elaborate one part of the explanation, examine in some detail one alternative to the secularization paradigm, and request that the reader make the charitable assumption that I will have dealt with the obvious criticisms in other places. 1 See my books Religion in the Modern World: From Cathedrals to Cults (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1996); Choice and Religion: A Critique of Rational Choice (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999); and God is Dead: Secularization in the West (Oxford: Blackwell, 2002).

If it works for you, it is true. There is no legitimate basis for imposing on others or even arguing. This makes any sort of concerted activity remarkably difficult. If two people disagree, there is no basis for settling the dispute. This explains why, for all the talk of counter-cultural and alternative community, New Age spirituality has not produced its alternative schools and communes. 14 In one example, a primary school collapsed because parents could not agree on how or what they wanted their children taught.

They concluded that between one and two percent of the population are involved in the holistic milieu in a typical week. But it is worth looking more closely at the activities they survey. 9 40 7 Steve Bruce and Tony Glendinning, “Religious Beliefs and Differences,” Devolution—Scottish Answers to Scottish Questions, ed. Catherine Bromley, John Curtice, Kerstin Hinds, and Alison Park (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2003) 86–115. 8 Paul Heelas and Linda Woodhead, The Spiritual Revolution: Why Religion Is Giving Way to Spirituality (Oxford: Blackwell, 2005).

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