De-Polarization in Religion and Ethics

Pushing towards the extreme pole can exalt, make us feel unique and pioneering, singular and
solitary, members of an elite; it can bind us to the thirst for the new and for discovery; it can
feed on the tension generated between extremes. But the polar extremity can also isolate,
make us lose our bearings, inebriate us in a race in which we forget everything except the
apex, the peak, the summit. Explorers of the extreme are not lacking in the religious and
ethical sphere, from the height of holiness to the excess of fundamentalism, from the
enthusiasm of the revolutionary to the radicalism of the ideologue. With the contexts,
languages and techniques, the polarities of the religious also change and are ignited by new
sparks, today increasingly digital and connected with new technologies and artificial
intelligence. But new sensitivities of "de-polarization" are also emerging and spreading, even in the technological sphere, looking at the path rather than the goal, at the community rather
than the hero, at the human contradiction of tensions rather than the superhuman purity of
the poles. Polarization and de-polarization are two pivotal movements in the religion and
ethics of our time. The IRS-FBK seminar explores this space, fraught with tensions, and begins
a reasoned cartography of it, through the voices of its researchers, through collaboration with
other FBK research groups, and through interventions by collaborators and guest experts.