29 May 2013

Handy freethought definitions

agnosticism - philosophical view that that the truth of certain ideas, such as the existence of deity, is unknown and/or unknowable
strict agnosticism holds the view that any ultimate reality (such as "God") is unknown and probably unknowable
empirical agnosticism holds the question to be unknown at present but not necessarily unknowable
apathetic agnosticism holds that the question is meaningless because there are no consequences either way
model agnosticism believes the question is not verifiable but that rational model can be achieved.

anticlericalism - opposition to involvment of clergy in other spheres of public life, especially politics; also, opposition to clerical authority within a religion by members of that religion, especially that of the hierarchy of the religion

antitheism - direct opposition to theism

apatheism - the position that the existence or nonexistence of god(s) is not important to one's daily life.

atheism - lack of belief in deity or deities, or disbelief in theism (by the strict definition of "theism").
implicit (weak, negative, soft, agnostic) atheism is the disbelief in the existence of deities.
explicit (strong, positive, hard, gnostic) atheism is the denial of any and all deity, or of one or more deities in particular.
agnostic atheism argues that the existence of deities is unknowable, that such knowledge is unimportant or irrelevant, and therefore refraining from making absolute claims of their existence of nonexistence is the best course.

deism - a system of thought advocating natural religion, emphasizing morality, and denying the interference of the Creator with the laws of the universe
pandeism - combines pantheism with a deistic view of the divine
panendeism - combines panentheism with a deistic view of the divine

disbelief - mental rejection of something as untrue; refusal or reluctance to believe

freethought - unorthodox attitudes or beliefs, specifically deism (18th century)

humanism - (1) devotion to the humanities; (2) humanitarianism; (3) a doctrine, attitude, or way of life centered on human interests or values; especially, a philosophy that usually rejects supernaturalism and stresses an individual's dignity and worth and capacity for self-realization through reason

ignosticism - the position that the existence or non-existence of a deity or deities is meaningless because it has no verifiable consequences and should therefore be ignored. Also called theological noncognitivism.

materialism - belief that physical matter is the only or fundamental reality and that all being and processes and phenomena can be explained as manifestations or results of matter, and that the only or the highest values or objectives lie in material well-being and in the furtherance of material progress.

naturalism - belief that scientific laws are adequate to account for all phenomena

nonbelief - lack, absence, or reverse of religious belief

nontheism - lack of belief in a personal deity

rationalism - reliance on reason as the basis for establishment of religious truth; a theory that reason is in itself a source of knowledge superior to and independent of sense perceptions; or a view that reason and experience rather than the nonrational are the fundamental criteria in the solution of problems

secular humanism - humanistic philosophy viewed as a nontheistic religion antagonistic to traditional religion

secularism - belief that religion and the state should be completely separate, with neither the state interferring in religion nor religion interferring in the state

skepticism - attitude of doubt or a disposition to incredulity either in general or toward a particular object; doctrine that true knowledge or knowledge in a particular area is uncertain; the method of suspended judgment, systematic doubt, or criticism characteristic of skeptics; or doubt concerning basic religious principles (as immortality, providence, and revelation)

theism - belief in the existence of a deity or deities, or, more strictly, belief in the existence of a deity or deities viewed as the creative source of man and the world who transcend(s) yet is/are immanent in the world
monotheism - belief in a single deity
eutheism - belief that the universe and its creator are both inherently good
dystheism - belief that the proponderance of evil in the universe makes eutheistic belief implausible
maltheism - belief that the universe and its creator are both inherently evil
monism - belief that everything is essentially one essence
dualism - belief that everything is essentially two opposing essences
pluralism - belief in many varied essences
dualism - a belief in a deity of good opposed by an equal or nearly equal deity of evil
polytheism - belief in many deities
monolatry - belief that there are several dieties but only one that should be worshipped
henotheism - belief in one supreme deity while recognizing the existence of other deities
kathenotheism - belief that there are several deities who alternate as the supreme being
panentheism - belief that deity contains the universe, and is also something greater
pantheism - belief that equates deity with the universe and everything in it; also, worship of all deities of different creeds, cults, or peoples indifferently; also, toleration of worship of all deities
transtheism - belief that deity trascends the universe yet is immanent within it

unbelief - incredulity or skepticism, especially in matters of religious faith; lack of faith or belief in religious matters (c. 11th century)

unitarianism - denial of the Christian doctrine of the trinity

universalism - doctrine that each person can, must, and will find their own way to salvation, liberation, enlightment, etc.


1 comment:

Samuel Maynes said...

If you are interested in some new ideas on religious pluralism, the Trinity, and the Supreme Being, please check out my website at www.religiouspluralism.ca. It previews my book, which has not been published yet and is still a “work-in-progress.” Your constructive criticism would be very much appreciated.

My thesis is that an abstract version of the Trinity could be Christianity’s answer to the world need for a framework of pluralistic theology.

In a constructive worldview: east, west, and far-east religions present a threefold understanding of One God manifest primarily in Muslim and Hebrew intuition of the Deity Absolute, Christian and Krishnan Hindu conception of the Universe Absolute Supreme Being; and Shaivite Hindu, Buddhist, Taoist apprehension of the Destroyer (meaning also Consummator), Unconditioned Absolute, or Spirit of All That Is and is not. Together with their variations and combinations in other major religions, these religious ideas reflect and express our collective understanding of God, in an expanded concept of the Holy Trinity.

The Trinity Absolute is portrayed in the logic of world religions, as follows:

1. Muslims and Jews may be said to worship only the first person of the Trinity, i.e. the existential Deity Absolute Creator, known as Allah or Yhwh, Abba or Father (as Jesus called him), Brahma, and other names; represented by Gabriel (Executive Archangel), Muhammad and Moses (mighty messenger prophets), and others.

2. Christians and Krishnan Hindus may be said to worship the first person through a second person, i.e. the experiential Universe or "Universal” Absolute Supreme Being (Allsoul or Supersoul), called Son/Christ or Vishnu/Krishna; represented by Michael (Supreme Archangel), Jesus (teacher and savior of souls), and others. The Allsoul is that gestalt of personal human consciousness, which we expect will be the "body of Christ" (Mahdi, Messiah, Kalki or Maitreya) in the second coming – personified in history by Muhammad, Jesus Christ, Buddha (9th incarnation of Vishnu), and others.

3. Shaivite Hindus, Buddhists, and Confucian-Taoists seem to venerate the synthesis of the first and second persons in a third person or appearance, ie. the Destiny Consummator of ultimate reality – unqualified Nirvana consciousness – associative Tao of All That Is – the absonite* Unconditioned Absolute Spirit “Synthesis of Source and Synthesis,”** who/which is logically expected to be Allah/Abba/Brahma glorified in and by union with the Supreme Being – represented in religions by Gabriel, Michael, and other Archangels, Mahadevas, Spiritpersons, etc., who may be included within the mysterious Holy Ghost.

Other strains of religion seem to be psychological variations on the third person, or possibly combinations and permutations of the members of the Trinity – all just different personality perspectives on the Same God. Taken together, the world’s major religions give us at least two insights into the first person of this thrice-personal One God, two perceptions of the second person, and at least three glimpses of the third.

* The ever-mysterious Holy Ghost or Unconditioned Spirit is neither absolutely infinite, nor absolutely finite, but absonite; meaning neither existential nor experiential, but their ultimate consummation; neither fully ideal nor totally real, but a middle path and grand synthesis of the superconscious and the conscious, in consciousness of the unconscious.

** This conception is so strong because somewhat as the Absonite Spirit is a synthesis of the spirit of the Absolute and the spirit of the Supreme, so it would seem that the evolving Supreme Being may himself also be a synthesis or “gestalt” of humanity with itself, in an Almighty Universe Allperson or Supersoul. Thus ultimately, the Absonite is their Unconditioned Absolute Coordinate Identity – the Spirit Synthesis of Source and Synthesis – the metaphysical Destiny Consummator of All That Is.

For more details, please see: www.religiouspluralism.ca

Samuel Stuart Maynes