The Disappearance of Rituals: A Reflection on Modern Society and Technology

Classified in Philosophy and ethics

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In "The Disappearance of Rituals" by Byung-Chul Han, Han argues that modern society is characterized by a loss of traditional rituals and a resulting lack of meaning and direction in people's lives. He claims that rituals, which he defines as "repetitive, symbolic actions that are carried out collectively," serve to create a sense of community and provide individuals with a sense of purpose and belonging. However, Han contends that the rise of individualism and technology has led to a decline in the importance of rituals, as people increasingly seek to define their identities on their own terms and through digital means. As a result, Han suggests that modern society has become fragmented and lacking in a shared sense of values and purpose. Han's book raises important questions about the role of ritual in contemporary life and the impact of technology on our social and cultural practices.


His work evidenced a conflict between religion and science in Western Society. He presented experimental evidence of his findings and published the results. Whoever wanted to could repeat his experiments. His findings opposed the authority of Aristotle and the Bible. For example, he found that the Earth was not at the center of the Universe. Before Galileo, we thought that humans were super special. Galileo was the 1st to prove that we are not the center.


In the second half of the nineteenth century, Darwin put forward a scientific hypothesis for human origins. The Theory of Evolution supports the view that older forms of life evolved into later ones through a process of natural selection, whereby organisms that could adapt to their surroundings better survived and reproduced. And those that could not adapt well disappeared. The Darwinian Model is the continued progress of growth and adaptation in the struggle between competing organisms and claims that Man Evolved from Animals.

6/ Ian Wilmut/CREATURE of GOD= Known principally for being the leader of a group of researchers who cloned an animal from an adult cell for the first time in 1996. A Finn Dorset Lamb who was baptized as Dolly the Sheep, this was a big ethical shock.

7/ FM-2030/NATURAL PERFECTION= Transhumanism is an international, intellectual, cultural movement whose final objective is to transform the human condition through the development and fabrication of technologies that improve human capabilities at the physical, psychological, and intellectual level. It studies the beneficial possibilities and dangers of new technologies that can help overcome fundamental human limitations and seeks to find an adequate ethics for the development and use of these technologies.


Marx's theories about society, economy, and politics sustain that all societies advance through the dialectic struggle between classes. His focus and praxis are materialistic. He was very critical of his contemporaneous socioeconomic form of capitalism. He thought capitalism had developed means of production that favored the governing classes. Why important: the ideas we have do not come from the outside world, they come from before.


Tried to frame the concept of the unconscious mind scientifically based on his conception of "unconsciousness," "unconscious desires," and "repression." He proposed a divided mind, whereby different levels or parts of the mind struggled in a way to dominate, where a primitive will existed beyond the conscious sphere. Invented psychoanalysis, which means that we do not have souls, that we are the product of our dreams.

5/ Friedrich Nietzsche/Slavish Morality =

Nietzsche sustained the point of view that there were two types of fundamental moral systems born of the Christian tradition: the morality of love, which values pride, strength, and nobility, and the morality of slaves, which values kindness, humility, and compassion.

Nihilism is a philosophical belief that life and existence have no inherent meaning, purpose, or value. Nihilists reject religious, moral, and social values and consider them to be human inventions without any objective reality or authority. It's a rejection of any moral code because "morals" simply do not exist. It is also a rejection of "truth." Nihilism can be seen as an extreme form of skepticism, in which all beliefs and values are subject to doubt and questioning. Nihilists often view the world as meaningless, absurd, and indifferent to human concerns, and they may feel a sense of despair, apathy, or detachment. There are different types of nihilism, including metaphysical nihilism, which denies the existence of any objective reality, and moral nihilism, which denies the existence of any objective moral values. Some forms of nihilism, such as existential nihilism, focus on the absence of inherent meaning in human existence, while others, such as political nihilism, reject the legitimacy of political systems and institutions. Nihilism has been explored by many philosophers and writers throughout history, including Friedrich Nietzsche, who famously declared that "God is dead" and advocated for a form of nihilism that would lead to the creation of new values and the affirmation of life. However, nihilism is generally seen as a controversial and challenging philosophy, as it challenges many commonly held beliefs and values.

Humanism is a philosophical and ethical stance that emphasizes the value and agency of human beings, individually and collectively, and generally prefers critical thinking and evidence over acceptance of dogma or superstition.

Humanism is a worldview that focuses on human beings, their values, dignity, and capacity for self-determination. It emphasizes reason, science, and rational inquiry as the best ways to understand the world and solve problems, rather than relying on faith, authority, or tradition. Humanists generally believe that individuals should be free to think and act as they choose, so long as their actions do not harm others.

Humanism has its roots in ancient Greek philosophy, but it emerged as a distinct movement during the Renaissance in Europe, which emphasized human creativity and achievement. Humanism has since evolved and has been influenced by various intellectual, social, and cultural movements.

In modern times, humanism has become associated with a number of related movements, including secularism, atheism, and agnosticism. Some of the key principles of humanism include respect for human dignity, human rights, equality, freedom, and social justice.

Posthumanism and transhumanism are philosophical currents that both focus on the changes that technology and science are generating in the human condition. Posthumanism focuses on overcoming the biological limitations of the human being. Transhumanism seeks the radical transformation of the human species through technology. Humanism today is dying because we are living posthumanism and transhumanism. Transhumanism has a positive view of robots and artificial intelligence, while posthumanism has a negative view, related to nihilism and relativism.

Posthumanism arises as a response to technological and scientific advances that have allowed the manipulation of the human body and the creation of artificial beings. Posthumanism proposes a redefinition of what it means to be human. Posthumanism raises the possibility of a fusion between the human being and technology, which would allow the creation of hybrid beings with superhuman abilities. This futuristic vision also raises ethical and moral questions about the role of technology in our society and how it will affect our sense of identity and community.

In his work, Byung-Chul Han argues that digital culture has generated a hyperactive and neurotic society. For Han, post-humanism is a form of alienation that seeks the elimination of human fragility and mortality. Instead of accepting our finite condition, post-humanism invites us to seek immortality and perfection through technology.

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