(or the ultimate dialectic against theism) by Jersey Flight
Theism has a particular way. In every case it bears the burden of proof. Theism is something that attempts to disrupt life. This disruption is important to the dialectic against theism.
How does theism begin? It begins the same way. [Only those who are desperate seek out the platitudes of theism, hoping to find security in its mask of authority.] Theism approaches life; it seeks to strangle life by the vicissitudes of dogma, that is, to complicate life by confusing it with theology.
The dialectic of theism runs thus:
Breaking in on life, the theist has no choice but to ask the question we have never felt the need to ask ourselves: "Do you believe in God?"
This is the question which accounts for the beginning of the dialectic of theism, as well as the end of the dialectic of theism. With this question theism seeks to disrupt life.
And the reason theism must ask this question, is because no healthy man or woman would seek to complicate life with such a tedious and unnecessary ontology. The man who lives finds no place for God! God is the antithesis of life! [These are the conclusions of a healthy mind.]
It is precisely at the point, of this unnecessary question, that we have the power to destroy theism. [There is no need to directly interact with the question.] As we said, in every case theism bears the burden of proof. Thus we reply:
'Can you justify the act of pursuing this question? Why should I use my time to consider this?'
If the theist cannot answer this question, without resorting to special pleading, then we will have legitimately surmounted the dialectic of theism without having to directly engage the dialectic of theism. The theist bears the burden of proof, and if he cannot substantiate his claim, above that of every other arbitrary, wild claim... until the theist can justify (or warrant) a conversation on something as tedious and unnecessary as God, there is no reason to waste our time on his semantics. (Nothing could be more impractical to life than the question of God)!
The point is that we are already engaged in the act of living life when this question tries to break in on life. What this means is that we have no need of God. In this sense the question of God functions like a kind of red herring... it is literally something that pulls us away from life.
The argument that will be made by the theist, to counter the proficiency of our dialectic, is that we are somehow defective without a knowledge of God. The theist will try to instill a kind of subtle despair or insecurity. But how can his line of reasoning proceed when we are successful at life? Do we need God to be moral? (Keep in mind every notion of God is specific). Do we need God in order to obtain the necessities of life? When the theist fails to infect life with insecurity he will turn to the desperate tactic of eternity. He will claim that life goes on forever and that we need God for the advent of eternity. But again, in every case the theist bears the burden of proof. Now we are no longer having a conversation about God, now the question has to do with eternity and all the semantics that accompany eternity. [Even if the theist was a master, at this mysterious and abstract dialectic, the chances of him being able to fuse his idea of God, with his defense of eternity, is nearly impossible. Once again, he turns to despair.]
After we ask the question, of the relevance of the question of God, there are not many places the theist can turn. The reason for this is because our question, not only has its origin in life, but is directed back at life. The same cannot be said for theism: theism is directed away from life! What the theist ultimately seeks to do is subject life to an ideology which has nothing to do with life, in essence, the theist seeks to dominate life with his abstract ontology. This provides him with the delusion (sense of power) that he can control and explain life.
If the theist can get us to play his sophistical game, then in a very real sense, he has already won the exchange. The very fact that we are taking the time to probe something as abstract and arbitrary as God, proves that we are presupposing the importance of the question of God. But why should we assume that this question is important? This is the theist's burden to bear because it is the question he must ask as a proponent of theism, if he would put forth the relevance of theism, as he would seek to assault life with theism. And if he cannot justify the act of his sophistry, then we have every right to ignore his question. There are many questions in life, but none of them are as unnecessary and disruptive as that of theism.
I suspect the majority of this dialectic will prove to be too advanced for the common theist. In their minds this is the most important question a man could ever ask, but what they don't see is their special pleading. Anyone can make this claim, about any particular ontology, unicorns or smurfs, and thereby draw us into their web of sophistry. But life is too short to proceed this way! Let the theist first justify the act of pursuing this question, and then, and only then, will we proceed. (Keep in mind that this is only the beginning of the theist's problems; should he manage to warrant this question as a legitimate question of life, he would then be met with an onslaught of legitimate resistance). It is not our responsibility to warrant this question for the theist, and we are fools if we assume its validity.
My hope, is that in the future, I will have the chance to display the power of this dialectic in action.
Thursday, August 21, 2014
"That “religion is a private affair“ only compels us to be neutral and not to take part in religious questions, when these only refer to intimate convictions and to the conscience." Rosa Luxemburg
Religion is in a state of retreat; we have literally mopped-up the apologists; all the disciples flee to solitude. Not only is it hard to find an opponent to debate, but as time goes on, we find more and more reasons not to waste our time with such debate, what we might call, a sophistical frolic of words. (And this is not because we have lost the exchange, but because we hold the higher ground; we have literally gained the upper-hand). The only thing the contemporary theist knows how to do is posture.
It is now possible to refute theism by common sense. The analytical theist's fought ever so hard to avoid this conclusion, but no one was listening, no one cares for the absurdity of their pedantic ways. It would seem their analytical games are only good for elite scholars!
I cheer as the sheep run to their caves; such panic, such insecurity signifies the beginning of a new era. The church is going away, nay, it has already lost its influence. Every day the archaic foot-hold of superstition recedes. The religious view is not merely eccentric; not merely something society tolerates from the platform of enlightenment (though this is true), but something that is irrelevant to existence. Everyday we do without it, by god our whole lives we have been without it! The only person the theist can find, as a candidate to indoctrinate, are men and women of despair. It feeds on the terror men feel at the prospect of being alive; at not having some kind of mystical, metaphysical certainty.
Religion claims to speak for the conscience, to stand for morality, but this is no different from the time religion claimed to speak for the universe. To mock the religious believer has now become a legitimate form of refutation... what we are saying is that such tactics actually work, they have a pragmatic value. (Even twenty years ago this was not the case, but things have changed, my how they have changed!, the church has retreated to the shadows). Her scholars are afraid to discourse because they know the outcome of their thesis. The exchange is a total loss. What is left is mere formality; the church claims the to be the perfect sage of piety, to guide man's way, but make no mistake, this was not by choice! Her original song was that of truth, she was the mother of authority, but now she is the broken harlot that hides in the cliffs from the terror of the strong wind. She is ashamed of her own shadow.
The future of religion is religion as preference; religion as a man's subjective taste. But this is altogether destructive to the ontology of religion itself. It can no longer claim to speak in the name of God; it can no longer put forth the omniscient-view, it has lost its hold on truth, nay, it has lost its hold on man (it never had the truth)! And now it must compete as a kind of eccentric and outdated aesthetic (which we confidently surmise, will only lead to its further demise).
The honest man knows that it is not the ideas of religion that make him happy, but his joy has its origin in the experiences of life, not phantoms or groundless, authoritarian ideals. The wise man makes the most of the life he has, he does not waste his life living for the error of another.
I honestly wonder if there are any apologists left? What more does theism have to say? The evolving mass of mankind has grown weary of this ancient superstition, we are made nauseous by this psychology. It hurts one's head to play such needless games with such serious disciples (most specifically when the subject warrants jest)... but there is still an irony here... whenever we actually play with these contorted theist, they have no choice but to fall-back in full retreat. They have nothing to say; their noble dialectic has been shattered! The caves are occupied; the great defenders are nowhere to be found. Very slowly, but very surely the church retreats from the watching world. If a man would hear about God he must now go to the darkest cave.
Saturday, August 16, 2014
Is capitalism compatible with atheism? The question should be, 'how can capitalism be compatible with Atheism?'
An Atheistic view of the world is a materialist view of the world, and this means the conditions of society find their root in the material.
If Atheism is, in any sense, a Humanistic philosophy, then it must equally think in terms of Humanity. An Atheist eschatology is very distinct from a theistic one, that is to say, we know we must rely on ourselves to create a better world because there is no after-world; there is no God to make the world better for us.
Is our goal to live together in harmony? Is our goal to thrive as a species, then how in gods name, could we not be concerned with social theory?
There is a major weakness in Atheism/ which is the Atheist's obsession with the outdated, irrelevant propositions of theism. One cannot live in the negative (as the negative) without also wasting one's life. Fuck A-theism... where is the positive philosophy of Humanism? Where is the Atheist vision of society? Little minds say this is not important... but what are they doing aside from playing sophistical, theistic games? How much power these little, insecure minds feel when they respond, when they refute the ignorant theist! The Atheist is addicted to the act of crushing the theist, but is his sense of self so small that he needs such a petty and simple victory in order to feel that his life is fulfilled?
One must get to the point in Atheism where they grow past Atheism; where they are no longer merely responding to theists! Atheism is that which must be transcended! If not one will forever remain in the grip of theism, which is to say, theism will determine the nature of our discourse in that we will forever be the refuters of theism.
Our duty is to change the world, to impact the world, to strive towards the creation of a better world, and for this, whether we like it or not, we are forced in the direction of economics and social theory.
The stage after Atheism must be the study of a good society from the basis of materialism.
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world in various ways; the point is to change it." Marx, Theses on Feuerbach, 11, 1938 translation of Marx’s original.
---A LETTER TO MY FELLOW FREETHINKERS---
I say this because I care; because I want my fellow Atheists to be informed, to storm the world with beauty and intelligence; to strive for a comprehensive future and not just a negative critique of superstition.
(I change all the time because I am constantly learning, and nothing assists in this process more than other people). The people we meet (can) have a very profound impact on our life. My favorite thing is meeting new people, and not just meeting new people, but making new friends, true friends!
Some time back I had the privilege of coming into contact with a very learned individual. He was an autodidact (self education person, much like myself). We got around to speaking on the phone; we talked about everything from Deconstruction to Deconversion... but the really important thing is that he inspired my focus toward social theory. [Now at first this might not seem very profound, altogether insignificant, but allow me to give you the context.]
He did a series of lectures on Atheism and Humanism; there was one line that struck me with a certain kind of force: "the failure of Atheism is that it does not have a grasp or consciousness of social theory, and this will limit its place and effectiveness in the world." I realized that this was true. We cannot hope to change society if we have not thought about what it takes to make a good society. It will not be enough to merely critique theism; Humanism has a positive connotation and seeks to move in (or at least it should) a practical direction!
Since that time my friends, I have not simply been concerned with the negative critique of theism, but even more importantly, with the positive attributes of society. If we are thinkers; if we believe in harmony, unity and peace, enlightenment, how can it be any other way?
A full and robust Atheism must be more than a critique of theism; it must reach toward the goals of Humanism in trying to create a good society. And we, above the failure and hatred of all the world's religions, are just the people to do it!