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quietism Line breaks: quiet|ism
Pronunciation: /ˈkwʌɪɪtɪz(ə)m/

Definition of quietism in English:


[mass noun]
1(In the Christian faith) devotional contemplation and abandonment of the will as a form of religious mysticism.
Example sentences
  • The interaction between Buddhism and Taoism gave rise to the Ch'an school of contemplative quietism which developed into Japanese Zen.
  • Critics of Keswick spirituality alleged that through its emphasis on the inner life, it taught a quietism that discouraged practical expressions of Christian living and a mysticism that was foreign to evangelical theology.
  • However, the real meaning of Taoist wu-wei is not quietism at all, but rather, activity in harmony with the ever-changing, ever-unchanging Way of all life.
2Calm acceptance of things as they are without attempts to resist or change them: political quietism
More example sentences
  • Those who believe that all affairs of state will shortly come to an end are, for obvious reasons, inclined to political quietism.
  • Rather than challenging this quietism and posing a political alternative, the radical critique of the global theorists, in fact, reflects and reproduces this sense of incapacity.
  • As a result, the next generation was to tend towards political quietism and, worst of all, a crass materialism.


Pronunciation: /ˈkwʌɪɪtɪst/
noun& adjective
Example sentences
  • These four are political quietists and do not think that clergymen should enter politics directly.
  • A quietist, he rejected involvement in politics and rejected Khomeini's theory of clerical rule.
  • He is not an advocate of clerical activism, preferring the traditional quietist approach to politics.
Pronunciation: /kwʌɪɪˈtɪstɪk/
Example sentences
  • Here situatedness determined ideas: moderate practice led to quietistic theory, while heightened class struggle produced theoretical radicalism.
  • One suspects he would deplore any such retreat into quietistic bliss, and would instead admonish us with the title of another of his books: Think.
  • Words regarding the necessity to change the souls of human beings to effect real change in the world should not be interpreted to mean that black religious leaders were adopting a quietistic approach to civil rights.


Late 17th century (denoting the religious mysticism based on the teachings of the Spanish priest Miguel de Molinos (circa1640–97)): from Italian quietismo, based on Latin quies, quiet- 'quiet'.

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