On cascades in opinions and other non-sequiturs

“Madmen in authority, who hear voices in the air, are distilling their frenzy from some academic scribbler of a few years back.” [1]

While reminiscing on some occasions when my views concerning certain matters changed, it seemed apparent that the process at times involved me adopting other ancillary views prior to (or even in lieu of) their formal demonstration.  In my case, that phenomenon seems particularly pervasive concerning religious questions.

For instance, both my apostasy from Rome and my repentance in Sydney were partly occasioned by viewing my previous convictions as to some extent historically contingent (in the first case discrediting my then-understanding of natural theology and in the second case discrediting some confidence I held concerning my remaining rationality.)  Moreover, while some apparent implications of each shift in my views did seem distasteful at the time, acquiring a stiff upper-lip seemed desirable.  Over time, a number of those respective challenges appeared easier to bear as new “bonds of affection” gradually entwined me.

While my views on religious matters have undergone considerable flux, my political views hitherto have seemingly remained fairly stable.  I wonder whether those whose political views seem frequently in flux, by way of compensation, might tend to hold fast their views on religious subjects.

—————-
[1] John Maynard Keynes, The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money (London: Longmans, Green, 1936), Chapter 12, p. 134.

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