Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Collected Tweets From Timothy Shah's American Democracy Lecture at Messiah College

Learn more about the lecture here.

  1. Shah: Religious freedom was more than a modern, Enlightened, Protestant, or Christian idea.
  2. Shah: Who is real symbol of religious freedom? Is it the founding father Jefferson or the African church father Tertullian?
  3. Shah: How much influence did Tertullian's idea of religious freedom have during his day?
  4. Shah:Tertullian thought religious freedom was dangerous.. It contributed to a sense of identity higher than the state.
  5. Shah: Tertullian believed that it was something akin to committing "civic suicide" to not allow religious freedom
  6. Shah: Language of religious freedom and individual rights Tertullian introduced is evident in Edict of Milan in 4th century
  7. Shah: Tertiullian defended the "modern" notion of the individual consicence and connected it to religious freedom
  8. Shah: Tertullian argued that religious freedom preserves the common good and protects people from the state.
  9. Shah: Tertullian believed religious freedom is essential to respecting human reason and judgment.
  10. Shah: Tertullian believed religious freedom honored our basic sense of human dignity
  11. Shah: Tertullian argued Roman persecution of Christians is universally wrong. Freedom is a condition of religious devotion
  12. Shah is now unpaclking Tertullian's view of religious freedom. He uses the word "religious liberty." Perhaps 1st known use
  13. Shah: How do you explain the similarities between Jefferson and Tertullian on religious freedom.? Tertullian was a dogmatist
  14. Shah: Tertullian articulated an idea of religious freedom almost identical to Jefferson's later idea of religious freedom
  15. Shah: Why would Jefferson cite Tertullian, a premodern authority, to support a modern idea like religious freedom
  16. Shah: Jefferson references Tertullian, the Latin church father, in *Notes on State of VA* when he discusses religious freedom
  17. Shah: Jefferson's idea of religious freedom is individual, normative, and universal rooted in human dignity
  18. Shah: Is religious freedom universal or is it modern, Enlightenment, Protestant, latitudinarian, parochial, Jeffersonian?
  19. Shah: Pew Research shows that 75% of the world's people live in countries with religious persecution and no religious freedom
  20. Shah: Is religious freedom a Western idea that America is trying to impose on the world or it is a universal idea?
  21. Shah: The Left thinks religious freedom is an American construction that should not be transported to the rest of the world
  22. Shah: Religious freedom is both universal and exceptional.
  23. Shah:American values are both universal and exceptional  

    Shah: Both Roger Williams and William Penn read Tertullian on religious freedom


johnshaw4blog said...

Professor Fea - great tweets! I look forward to reading some of Shah's work on Tertullian.

Another good source not listed is:
Justifying Religious Freedom: The Western Tradition by E. Gregory Wallace

On p, 504 Wallace concludes: “While Tertullian was the first to articulate a general principle of
religious freedom, his arguments were not well developed and had a
somewhat limited effect, being addressed to his Roman persecutors and not to fellow-Christians who were in disagreement with other Christians. His writings on toleration, however, are the most important Christian source for Lactantius, who “draws on Tertullian for his idea that religion requires liberty” and in so doing provides Constantine with the basis for a remarkably progressive policy of religious freedom.”

http://pennstatelawreview.org/articles/114%20Penn%20St.%20L.%20Rev.%20485.pdf 114 Penn St. L. Rev. 485

John Fea said...

Interesting, John. Thanks for reading.