Friday, November 6, 2009

Religion is not about belief

This is a great article on the nature of belief in religion and how the idea of Faith did not, until the modern day, have anything to do with the sort of blind belief that it does today.

Great stuff

http://www.religiondispatches.org/archive/rdbook/1930/religion_is_not_about_belief:_karen_armstrong’s_the_case_for_god/

3 comments:

Apuleius Platonicus said...

Armstrong is an apologist for monotheism and for Islam in particular.

"Belief" is not the issue at all. The issue is specific religions, Christianity and Islam in particular, that require belief in something that doesn't exist: one and only one "God".

Human beings by our very nature are hardwired to experience the Divine everywhere and in everything. Our experience of the Divine is inherently "multiple" and varied. It is also necessarily different from one person to the next and from one "culture" to the next, precisely because the experience is so direct, immediate and intimate.

Armstrong entire mission is to paper over the intrinsic irrationality and intolerance of monotheism by promoting a narrative according to which all of the "great" religions are just one big happy family.

It is also worth mentioning that she is not in any meaningful sense of the word a "scholar", although she is inevitably depicted as such. She is a writer of books for a wide audience, an occupation that rewards simplistic thinking. She started off writing insipid "inspirational" books based on her own self-involved angst over her personal failures as a Christian nun and as a wannabe literary scholar. Her publishers and handlers have managed to promote her as a great intellectual. Bah.

Suecae Sounds said...

I appriciate where Armstrong are coming from, but I can understand your points Apuleius Platonicus.

Nevertheless - the case for God is on my list of books to be read.

Oein said...

As you said - great stuff!!