Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Discuss philosophical questions regarding theism (and atheism), and discuss religion as it relates to philosophy. This includes any philosophical discussions that happen to be about god, gods, or a 'higher power' or the belief of them. This also generally includes philosophical topics about organized or ritualistic mysticism or about organized, common or ritualistic beliefs in the existence of supernatural phenomenon.
Dlaw
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Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by Dlaw » January 15th, 2018, 2:32 pm

Hi All,

In the new American spirit of bipartisanship [cough], I would like to solve all our problems.

If you, like me, are a real Atheist - not an Atheist who feels a need to argue for Atheism particularly and not an Atheist who dislikes a religious text any more than he dislikes Shakespeare or Tagore (deliberately using a great but culturally obscure author) because they are the same thing - literature - then perhaps you can see your way clear to something new:

Religious Atheism.

Here's a redux:

Christian Atheism: God did foresake Jesus on the Cross - by not existing when he was supposed to.

Muslim Atheism: There is no God, but God - those are one statement AND two statements.

Jewish Atheism: We are the Chosen people of the Covenant with a God who is not there.

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LuckyR
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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by LuckyR » January 16th, 2018, 4:32 am

Do you have a question?
"As usual... it depends."

Dlaw
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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by Dlaw » January 16th, 2018, 5:06 pm

LuckyR wrote:
January 16th, 2018, 4:32 am
Do you have a question?
Yes: Is it possible to have Religious Atheism?

Would the adoption of this position provide a middle ground between Atheists and religious people?

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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by Spectrum » January 17th, 2018, 12:44 am

Christian-Atheism, Muslim-Atheism are oxymorons.
Non-theistic religions like Buddhism or Jainism - yes.
Not-a-theist. Religion is a critical necessity for humanity now, but not the FUTURE.

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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by LuckyR » January 17th, 2018, 1:59 am

Dlaw wrote:
January 16th, 2018, 5:06 pm
LuckyR wrote:
January 16th, 2018, 4:32 am
Do you have a question?
Yes: Is it possible to have Religious Atheism?

Would the adoption of this position provide a middle ground between Atheists and religious people?
I prefer Spectrum's idea of nontheistic religions as a more useful middle ground.
"As usual... it depends."

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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by Judaka » January 17th, 2018, 9:22 am

Religious Atheism is only attainable by being a "real atheist", Dlaw you are constantly overcoming my expectations.

Dlaw
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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by Dlaw » January 17th, 2018, 2:01 pm

Spectrum wrote:
January 17th, 2018, 12:44 am
Christian-Atheism, Muslim-Atheism are oxymorons.
Non-theistic religions like Buddhism or Jainism - yes.
I dunno. It's always worked for me.

If you've just never believed that there's anything like an anthropomorphized God, religion is not offensive to you. It's like reading a more-inspiring version of Beowulf or something. Of course you know one of the characters isn't real, but that's not the point. You know the role that the character is meant to play and you take the narrative on its own terms.

Take the common Muslim prayer: "There is no God, but God". What does it mean? It means whatever your image of God, you have to understand that that image is a human-created shadow of the reality, at best. If you truly take seriously and literally the idea that God is unknowable then it puts the rest of the religion in a new light.

In Buddhism (and please excuse my napkin-back theology here), one has to accept that the desire to live and "clinging" to existence are diametrically opposed desires, which must both be accepted as reality before they can be understood as a unified concept of a Middle Way. My understanding of all religion is informed by this Buddhist way of looking at religion because without it, Jesus made no sense to me and I love Jesus.

So I had to decide that Jesus represented a Middle Way. I think - think, mind you - that this is possible with most religions.

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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by Spectrum » January 18th, 2018, 3:39 am

Dlaw wrote:
January 17th, 2018, 2:01 pm
Take the common Muslim prayer: "There is no God, but God". What does it mean? It means whatever your image of God, you have to understand that that image is a human-created shadow of the reality, at best. If you truly take seriously and literally the idea that God is unknowable then it puts the rest of the religion in a new light.
For the months I have researched in the Quran I believe I has sufficient understanding of the religion of peace.
"There is no God, but God" meant there is no other true gods except Allah as claimed in the Quran. All other gods are false gods not the true God. The Quran claims the original intended God of the Christians was the true God but the Christian's God in the current NT is a false god as a real God cannot 'give birth' to have a son. The Christians will claim that is a misunderstanding but the Muslims don't care and believe the God in the NT is a false god.

The Quran's "There is no God, but God" is a very arrogant claim and regard all other gods as false gods.
In Buddhism (and please excuse my napkin-back theology here), one has to accept that the desire to live and "clinging" to existence are diametrically opposed desires, which must both be accepted as reality before they can be understood as a unified concept of a Middle Way. My understanding of all religion is informed by this Buddhist way of looking at religion because without it, Jesus made no sense to me and I love Jesus.
I have no issue with the way you accept Jesus. I agree the Middle-Way can be applied within all religions in many aspects of life.

But within the central doctrine, Jesus' Christianity is not totally reconcilable with Buddhism's Middle-Way since the belief in Jesus's Father [one extreme] is uncompromisable and absolute.
So I had to decide that Jesus represented a Middle Way. I think - think, mind you - that this is possible with most religions.
It may be possible with non-theistic religions but not theistic religions since is theism in general is uncompromisable and absolute.

In the Buddhist perspective, if the idea of God is brought in, then a Buddhist will adopt the two truths, 'God Exists' and 'God Do Not Exists' interchangeably relative to contexts.
In some sect of Buddhism they take it that a God exists in one sense but God do not exists in the ultimate sense. This view is relative and not absolute like theistic religions, thus the Middle-Way.
Not-a-theist. Religion is a critical necessity for humanity now, but not the FUTURE.

Dlaw
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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by Dlaw » January 18th, 2018, 1:00 pm

Spectrum wrote:
January 18th, 2018, 3:39 am
Dlaw wrote:
January 17th, 2018, 2:01 pm
Take the common Muslim prayer: "There is no God, but God". What does it mean? It means whatever your image of God, you have to understand that that image is a human-created shadow of the reality, at best. If you truly take seriously and literally the idea that God is unknowable then it puts the rest of the religion in a new light.
For the months I have researched in the Quran I believe I has sufficient understanding of the religion of peace.
"There is no God, but God" meant there is no other true gods except Allah as claimed in the Quran. All other gods are false gods not the true God. The Quran claims the original intended God of the Christians was the true God but the Christian's God in the current NT is a false god as a real God cannot 'give birth' to have a son. The Christians will claim that is a misunderstanding but the Muslims don't care and believe the God in the NT is a false god.

The Quran's "There is no God, but God" is a very arrogant claim and regard all other gods as false gods.
In Buddhism (and please excuse my napkin-back theology here), one has to accept that the desire to live and "clinging" to existence are diametrically opposed desires, which must both be accepted as reality before they can be understood as a unified concept of a Middle Way. My understanding of all religion is informed by this Buddhist way of looking at religion because without it, Jesus made no sense to me and I love Jesus.
I have no issue with the way you accept Jesus. I agree the Middle-Way can be applied within all religions in many aspects of life.

But within the central doctrine, Jesus' Christianity is not totally reconcilable with Buddhism's Middle-Way since the belief in Jesus's Father [one extreme] is uncompromisable and absolute.
So I had to decide that Jesus represented a Middle Way. I think - think, mind you - that this is possible with most religions.
It may be possible with non-theistic religions but not theistic religions since is theism in general is uncompromisable and absolute.

In the Buddhist perspective, if the idea of God is brought in, then a Buddhist will adopt the two truths, 'God Exists' and 'God Do Not Exists' interchangeably relative to contexts.
In some sect of Buddhism they take it that a God exists in one sense but God do not exists in the ultimate sense. This view is relative and not absolute like theistic religions, thus the Middle-Way.
OH, there's no question that you have to bend the textual meanings here.

The point is that the thinking exists or is possible.

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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by Hereandnow » January 19th, 2018, 1:06 am

Your problem Dlaw is that you seem lacking, that is, there is no evidence in your thoughts here, an exposure to philosophy on the matter of religion. Kierkegaard, Buber, Levinas, Otto, to name just a few. Puzzling that these would be ignored in a matter that is precisely up their alley.

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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by 3uGH7D4MLj » January 21st, 2018, 9:48 pm

I like Kierkegaard's Leap of Faith idea, and in the same breath he mentions absurdity. This is tantalizing, makes me want to do a stronger reading.

But he seems enamored of the afterlife, and so loses a bit of traction with me. I think that's a poor reason for believing in anything. mmm?
fair to say

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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by Hereandnow » January 21st, 2018, 10:36 pm

3uGH7D4MLj:
I like Kierkegaard's Leap of Faith idea, and in the same breath he mentions absurdity. This is tantalizing, makes me want to do a stronger reading.

But he seems enamored of the afterlife, and so loses a bit of traction with me. I think that's a poor reason for believing in anything. mmm?
I get a bit annoyed by this too. I remember his devotion to Christianity and I couldn't understand how someone so brilliant could be so naive. I read his Purity of the Heart is to Will One Thing and noted it was saturated with Christian pathos.Then I read elsewhere. His religious faith is an odd thing. It doesn't really matter the content of faith so much; it is, rather, the way faith opens doors of inner authenticity. What i like about Kierkegaard is this: He finds the only meaningful Real within, that is, in subjectivity. This is where the human drama lies, not in some objective theory. K. was anti rationalist, anti objectivist. There is nothing that can replace the profound sense of the inner world, where the concrete matter of being here at all has its basis. I think he's right. K. was a Cartesian of sorts: the cogito is the ontological center of the world; his Knight of faith has a mission, which is eternal happiness. To understand this, one has to disregard, that is, suspend empirical (scientific) theory about what the world is, and look only at the inner self, where existential themes loom large: finitude and infinity; dread and happiness; death of the soul and salvation. Here is where he wins me: If we suspend presuppositions grounded in science (and remember thomas Kuhn here: science is not a finished vocabulary, so to speak. It is not God's hand on a stone tablet. Far, far from it. It will never settle on some final body of theory) and everydayness, then what we have before us is this dramatic world of suffering and joy in a finite world embedded in eternity. One has to, to follow K., look deeply into this as it is apart from those presuppositions.

Of course, you have to give up the popular view that takes a human being as an empirical object. later existentialists put a great deal of meat on these bones. But K. understood that a human being is not reducible to objective standards, as if you were measuring a distance to some star or carbon dating rock strata. A human being has latent subjectivity that is utterly profound. Again, I think he's right.

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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by Dlaw » January 22nd, 2018, 2:48 am

Hereandnow wrote:
January 19th, 2018, 1:06 am
Your problem Dlaw is that you seem lacking, that is, there is no evidence in your thoughts here
Really. Well, that is alarming.

What "evidence" would you suggest is dispositive here and what is your position?

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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by Dlaw » January 22nd, 2018, 2:53 am

Hereandnow wrote:
January 21st, 2018, 10:36 pm

Of course, you have to give up the popular view that takes a human being as an empirical object. later existentialists put a great deal of meat on these bones. But K. understood that a human being is not reducible to objective standards, as if you were measuring a distance to some star or carbon dating rock strata. A human being has latent subjectivity that is utterly profound. Again, I think he's right.

What would the physical difference be between something that has "latent subjectivity" and something that doesn't?

If we constructed an S-Zombie - which we defined as exactly like a human in every respect but WITHOUT subjectivity, how would we tell the S-Zombie from a real human?

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Re: Christian Atheism, Muslim Atheism, Religious Atheism Generally - Possible?

Post by Hereandnow » January 22nd, 2018, 1:14 pm

Dlaw:
What would the physical difference be between something that has "latent subjectivity" and something that doesn't?

If we constructed an S-Zombie - which we defined as exactly like a human in every respect but WITHOUT subjectivity, how would we tell the S-Zombie from a real human?
First, I don't know what you mean by 'physical'. It is a fiction, materialism, that is. A useful term and I may use it in many contexts, but not philosophically. If it is brought up philosophically, it needs a lot of explaining.

What also needs explaining is subjectivity. I am tempted to say that defining a human without subjectivity is like defining, say, defining a room with out extension. A room IS extension. All the things you would mention always already are subjectivity; even those scientific pronouncements have their origin in the meanings laid forth by a structured subjectivity.

But I think you have in mind phenomena. Never mind that we may live "in mind" and all we see are ideational content, what if among these, there were no subjective core, like a soul or a transcendental ego? The question is, what if there were no transcendental ego would there be a
discernible difference?

Depends on how you define the such an ego. If positing it is justified, then there is something there in the world that does the justifying and would be missing, and the difference you seek would be found in the absence of this. So, is the positing of a transcendental ego justified? The subjective end of things we do in conscious awareness, in judging, in feeling, in thinking, in questioning, and so forth, needs to be determined in such a way that the judging what it is without such a positing.

Kierkegaard would say the evidence you seek reveals itself by taking your inquiring self off the matter at hand, the theoretical searching for a transcendental ego, and attending to the dynamic of what presents itself when foundational issues, for him , the passionate pursuit eternal happiness through faith that delivers the soul into its true actuality, rise to awareness. Were you to put the question to K. he would probably your say thoughts are about words, like the word 'soul' while the real issue before you is passionate engagement. This engagement IS the soul (see his Sickness Unto Death). No proof is needed beyond putting one in the midst of this powerful dread of realizing the life you live in the everyday world is not really who you are. You discern this by being a real Christian, which is being in an existential crisis.

K. is called a father of existentialism because he brilliantly tried to bring matters of philosophy to a level beneath, if you will, science to what is at the Real core of our being here. Kant tried to do this with transcendental arguments and for him the structural features of consciousness were rational. For K. they are the whole person's world, filled with need and fear and passion. That is the real human being. What is missing in the above question, once the soul is taken out of the picture is this.
To me it's a bit like the Touring test in which people are on one side and computers and other people are on the other and the former listen to the latter respond to questions. If the people responders can be distinguished from the computers then is there a difference? K. would laugh at this silliness. If the computer is capable of an existential crisis per above, then let's talk.

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