Religion and Ethics
Online ISSN : 1346-8219
ISSN-L : 1346-8219
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  • Towards the Critique of Science and Technology from the Viewpoint of Religious Ethics
    Katsuhiro Kohara
    2016 Volume 2016 Issue 16 Pages 3-17
    Published: 2016
    Released: January 29, 2020
    Since the March 11 disaster, the relation between religion and publicness has received greater focus from scholars of religion in Japan. The main question asked relates to how religion itself can contribute to the process of reconstruction of the disaster-affected area, while great importance is also placed on the question of whether or not religion can criticize science and technology, especially nuclear power generation, from its own ethical perspective. In modern nations, it has been assumed that publicness brings maximum benefits to "humans" of the "current generation" with science and technology regarded as a tool to this end. If we are to criticize such a modern framework and present an alternative ethical standard that is not too human-centric or current-generation-centric, we need to be able to engage in dialogue with the dead and embrace a sense of responsibility toward future generations. By remembering those gone in the past and envisioning those to come in the future, we, as those living now, are reminded of our specific ethical responsibility. This paper refers to this idea as "Ethics of the Absent" and theorizes it, not by considering how we can position religion in publicness, but by attempting to release publicness that has been confined to religion. In so doing, I will not only discuss the possibility of religion in general, but also focus on Christianity by way of presenting the gist of religious-ethical criticism against science and technology.
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