Political Leadership and Religion
Political Leadership and Religion
Since the beginning, human beings have been transforming the world to ensure that they live in the best conditions ever. As a result, sometimes the efforts have led to disasters like a world war, disease outbreaks affecting the whole world, and the extinction of some species like dinosaurs. Natural disasters like disease and climate change have also affected the way human beings exist and behave, even though it is evident that man has contributed to some of these natural disasters. The purpose of the existence of human beings has been met with a lot of criticism by existential philosophers like Jean-Paul Sartre of France and Soren Kierkegaard of Denmark. Both were great existential philosophers; in my work, I will give more attention to Jean-Paul Sartre of France because I like his trail of thought. Existentialism philosophy argues that the existence of everyone is specific and personal and that reality is the origin of the problem of existence itself; human beings, therefore, have been tried overtime to find the meaning of being. In searching for existence, the human person must choose and commit to something that gives sense to their presence. There are many options, and one can easily exist without purpose or reason. Existentialism does not any form of doctrine that portrays human beings as absolute and hence opposes idealisms like Reason, Idea or Oversoul, or Spirit; besides, it is also opposed to objectivism or scientism, all of which emphasize the coarse reality of external facts.
Existentialism takes a comprehensive and contrasting view and insists on the transcendence of being about existence, and asserts that the origin of existence is transcendence. Jean-Paul Sartre’s argument is based on a phenomenological approach and advocates for the unbiased explanation of the concept of conscious experience, something he adopted from another German philosopher, Edmund Husserl. Sartre, in his book, “Being and Nothingness,” puts human consciousness against being or nothingness and points out that nothingness cannot be just a subjective mistake but an experienced reality. Nothingness in man is not merely a state of mind which indicates negative judgment; the nature of inquiry of human beings pushes consciousness away from our world since every question leaves room for a negative answer. For instance, once someone knocks on the door and the question by the one inside the house is, “who is it” that leaves room for a negative response, but one says, “come in or welcome,” there is no room for any answer.
In the context above, it is evident that in the current world, the concepts explained can be used in political leadership by viewing it from a religious perspective. In chapter 2: “Bad faith.” In his book, Jean-Paul Sartre (Sartre) argues that self-denial exists in two forms; one where human being falsely believes in what is not true and another where people conceive themselves as objects. For instance, convincing yourself that you are identical to a particular political position and forgoing the ability to experience and think otherwise. Sartre further explains that there is a greater understanding that nothingness as a state of mind gives us a chance a become anything we desire. Political leaders seek special prayers from religious leaders to cement their belief that they ought to be elected to certain positions of power. By accepting to experience nothingness, the individuals would make good choices and hence appreciate their existence, which Sartre calls, the “Great Human Stream.” In his book.
Human beings tend to pretend about what they are not in public; For instance, Sartre highlights a situation of a homosexual individual who cannot openly reveal his behavior. For him, the attitude is right based on fundamental human reality but he also says that it would be okay if the individual openly acknowledged his behavior. He concludes by saying that human’s reality cannot be defined by a pattern of conduct, political leadership would really change my perception on leaders if they allowed me to see them for who they really are and not who they pretend to be in public and the society in that case would be great in all aspects. I will emulate a career of a leader who is known to be real in his existence as Sartre argues but not one who hides his reality and does not reveal his true existence for fear of being judged negatively.
My friends in several occasions tell me that I sometimes speak a lot unnecessarily when I am excited about something good in my life, it may be argued that it is in my nature to be that way, but I have never held it back at any given period. Sartre advices that we ought to realize that we are beings who exist and not social or historical presumptions in order to do away with bad faith in us, he also advocates for a balance in our roles, existence and nothingness so that we become authentic beings. Looking into my future in reference to political leadership from the perspective of religion I would say that it is going be impossible for me to take politician as role model in a society just because they engage with religious leaders for pollical gains like prayers favors aimed at just getting the Christian following.
In my profession too, I will strive to be real in my work as a professional, one of the effects of bad faith is lack of traditional ethics and Sartre recommends that we allow the will in other people to alter our actions. A profession that is built on good faith and authentic personality, free from ego, gives purpose of existence and of being. Most of the political leaders have great professions before getting in politics, and once elected they use their qualifications to make plans and deals which lead to misusing public resources, for instance, an actuary coming up with a medical insurance plan which ends up misusing funds meant for the poor by disguising it as the best medical insurance wherein actual sense he is siphoning public funds to his pocket.
Church leaders and political leaders often align towards each other where the latter finances the former with resources meant for the public, and in return, the former ensures that their followers align themselves with the intentions of the latter. Sartre uses the approach of two people once in love one does things for the other due to the bond that they both feel towards each other, the same is witnessed in church and political leaders, he argues that the lovers deprive themselves experiencing subjectivity. The result is conflict with oneself to maintain the bond, that is how churches have been reduced to political podiums by politicians who act in bad faith, as discussed earlier in the text.
In conclusion the Existentialism philosophy has many contradicting accounts and scholars and a perfect model of understanding is one which can be criticized to improve but for existentialism a critical attack makes it absurd. for example, Sartre arguments of reducing existence to nothingness may lead to combining existence with being, in my view politics from the perspective of religion captures the true nature of existentialism philosophy in many ways since the politicians often go to church during politics, the approach of existence is an experience comes out clearly. For each individual philosopher who engages in existentialism including Jean-Pual Sartre have some parts of their works where they cannot be understood fully due to absurdity and lack of concrete flow of ideas and thought process. The approach that every person has a clear control of their existence and are reliable their being leaves a gap in the thought trail which open to criticism. The argument touches lightly on religion as most of the philosophers are not Christianity even though the thought process can help people to be authentic in their existence by evaluating themselves following the teachings of philosophers.