November 25, 2007
Posted by therationalgod under Pantheism
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Christian Science and Pantheism
During my surfing hours the other day I came across what to me is a little known organisation called Christian Science which was founded by Mary Baker Eddy towards the end of the 19th century. She wrote an article called Christian Science and Pantheism which was aimed at damning pantheism and promoting Christian Science.
What is Christian Science? Well it has a sufficient following to warrant an entry in Webster’s. I am not fond of definitions from dictionaries. The definition of a word is always dependent on the context of the sentence in which it is used, and it is this context and usage which leads to the definition in a dictionary. Too many people run to the dictionary for the definition as if it is somehow the dictionary compilers who have invented the words and thus is how any word must be used. Dictionary definitions change as the usage of a word changes, not the other way round. To understand the meaning of a word we need to know how it was intended to be used by the speaker or writer of that word. However, in this article, I shall use the Webster’s definition because it is the first entry on the Christian Science webpage. In this case the context is perfect.
Christian Science is ”a religion and a system of healing founded by Mary Baker Eddy c. 1866, based on an interpretation of the Scriptures asserting that disease, sin, and death may be overcome by understanding and applying the divine principles of Christian teachings.”
Now clearly, even on Mary Bakers own terms her religious beliefs have proved to be a failure. I may be wrong. Maybe Mary Baker is alive and well and has managed to overcome death by the application of Christian teaching. However, I am sure that I would be aware of her continued existence if it were the case that she is still alive. Having not heard to the contrary I can only assume that her teachings proved false.
There is more Christian Science and Pantheism, Click here
October 24, 2007
Posted by therationalgod under Atheism
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I had intended to move on from atheism and theism and look at pantheism but I came across an article about atheism symbols and became intrigued.
I touched upon the definition of religion in an earlier post. Religion is not just having a belief in God but extends to include purpose and worship of artefacts, places or even symbols. Proudly displaying a symbol is a basic sign of religious behaviour and it seems the atheist community are scrambling around in an attempt to come to some agreement as to what that symbol might be.
An atheism symbol certainly takes atheists one step closer to becoming a religion. Whatever next? Soon we will see organised groups of atheists taking a pilgrimage to the Galapagos Islands in tribute to their founder. Will Galapagos become the New Jerusalem? An atheist location as a place of ultimate worship, hmm, another criterion ticked for what it is that defines a religious group.
There is more Atheism Symbol here
October 20, 2007
Compare Theism and Atheism
There are a number of ways that we can compare theism and atheism. In a debate that is increasingly politicised, in the USA at least, it is important to understand the objective or emotion of any person who is engaged in such a debate. This post is a brief look at the charge levelled against atheists that they too are expressing religiousness.
The simple view would be that to compare theism and atheism is trivial as one side (theism) offers a position of belief, whilst the other (atheism) counters with the negation or rejection of that belief. However, there are a number of different ways we can make a comparison particularly when we see either side stray from the real notion of what they are in fact supporting or denying.
Emphasised in earlier posts has been the point that theism is the assertion that there is a God who exists separately from the universe that he has created. Atheism is the denial of this claim. This is the “in a nutshell” definition of what theism and atheism entails.
There is more Compare Theism and Atheism here