What is the name of the philosopher who said something about our thoughts roaming over things sacred and profane without a care for the morality of said thought? Any context would be appreciated.

  • I may have used the wrong words (sacred and profane). The gist I got from the quote was that men's minds had no barriers unlike the real world . I don't remember anything religious but I could be wrong. New to philosophy. Mar 18, 2015 at 12:30

1 Answer 1


Émile Durkheim.

The sacred–profane dichotomy is an idea posited by French sociologist Émile Durkheim, who considered it to be the central characteristic of religion: "religion is a unified system of beliefs and practices relative to sacred things, that is to say, things set apart and forbidden."

From: Sacred–profane dichotomy on Wikipedia; the quote from Durkheim 1915, p. 47

  • If there's a worse idea online than allowing other people to actually alter the sense of something posted by someone else, I haven't seen it. Civility prevents me from fully expressing myself at this moment. @Keelan I formally request and frankly insist you refrain from altering my posts from now on until the end of time. Your edit went far beyond the bounds of fixing a typo. If I'm on math.stackexchange and somebody with 100k rep and professional competence in the topic alters my post, that's one thing. This wasn't that. You don't like my style, don't read my posts.
    – user4894
    Mar 14, 2015 at 0:13
  • I just realized its possible that you were being sincere and actually thought I would appreciate your edit. Let me correct you. I deliberately wrote a very abrupt answer because it took me no longer than five seconds to look up the information. The OP could have and most certainly should have done the same. Therefore I simply posted the direct answer to his question, along with the Wiki link and a minor self-deprecating joke as character filler. The fact that you totally misunderstood all of that is exactly why you are unsuited to edit my writing. You have knowledge but lack understanding.
    – user4894
    Mar 14, 2015 at 0:54
  • I edited your post to make it fit the standard. It was an edit or a flag. If you don't want to contribute more than a link, comment, don't answer. It's not about style, it's about quality and standards. I indeed hoped you would appreciate my edit. There's a reason for the length threshold. If you're under it, you should think if you're doing the right thing. I don't think you can ask me to stop editing your posts based on one incident in which I wasn't even wrong. Through votes I have been given the privilege to edit by the community. (but a suggested edit like this would've passed as well)
    – user2953
    Mar 14, 2015 at 7:43

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .