Digest of terms
a label for various forms of extremism, both religious and secular, and always relative to a particular evaluative perspective. To the extent that this perspective is widely shared, and especially if it is held to be universal or absolute, judgments of fanaticism may be regarded as sound; otherwise they may be regarded, and rejected, as purely subjective and reflecting the bias or prejudice of a particular person or group. The term is frequently used in connection with religion, both peaceful (asceticism) and violent, but the latter connects to exclusively political instances, while moral fanaticism is also possible (altruism). In other areas the term tends to have less weighty connotations, e.g. with reference to sports or music fanatics, but in all cases the judgment is being implied that something is being prioritized that should be graded as less important and perhaps should be rejected altogether.