I see it the other way around, religions have a lot to do with what people intuitively experience. I personally have found that materialism and philosophy is acutely lacking for human beings, who experience themselves in a threefold manner: as Body, Soul and Spirit.
Now we're getting somewhere, B.
The two most important questions for your statement, the two that just might be the turning point in your reasoning, the only
Setting aside the possibility that Materialism is "right" or "wrong," which is irrelevent in this question, what is it that Materialism is
lacking in, and is this "lack" a justification for the belief that Materialism is wrong? Simple asked, is it wrong because "it is wrong," or because "you don't like it?"
There are two possible simple logical fallacies that you might note. The post hominum and the straw man.
Because of these, I am deducing that Materialism is wrong because:
1. It yields unfavorable consequences and creates personal prejudices which affect your judgement. (post hominum)
2. It is "psychologically," or "spiritually," or "soulfully" lacking, and any theory that is "right" is not lacking for those things.(straw man)
I think there are a few more fallacies as well, but hey, I'm no Logician, so I'll leave it to Marshall or Raf to suddenly post any examples and/or give web links related there to.
Here's the problem, Bob. I don't want to discard Materialism for those reasons only
I also don't feel very stable with the idea of three types of ontological being, as I am having trouble even now accepting two. In matters of science, material monism is the most popular view held because it is the most efficient and simple model for the "universe." I am willing to go the philosophical distance and split this monism into two items, but that is only because I feel that experience
, and giving that its own genus, would not be harmful to science. Obviously I admit that scientific theory is often undisclosed and incomplete, but this doesn't give me permission to freak out and believe anything I want to. "Philosophy" does, unfortunately, need boundaries if it is to get away with even the simplest dualisms.
The dualism I am willing to acknowledge, the bit about "experience" and how I will set that aside as its own, is still as critical as a science. The maximum length I will go is accepting that human "consciousness" is essentially a "free" agent in the sense that it has a different kind of causal existence than physical entities in space. This doesn't mean that it gets to be its own determination or is outside of the system, but only that it can be regarded as a kind of epiphenomena which can be separated from empirical phenomena and working by its own particular "laws," I guess. Still it remains essentially materialistic because it admits that physical being must constitute the existence of the epiphenomena, not the other way around: the mind comes from the world, not the world from the mind. This is ontology, which is philosophy, not science. And it is the easiest explaination, so even as a philosophy it tends to take the form of a science, which, obviously, should be intended. Otherwise, why stop with the "spirit" and "soul?" Why not add a fourth or fifth dimension to the scheme. By now its "no holds barred" because we've already refused to accept that its all meat and potatos. We call ourselves "philosophers" and make up our own rules, right?
Yep, in the existential abyss, anything goes. I see it all the time. Because we "don't know" what's going on we think that we can conceive of any possible possibility, and that it is equally likely to be possible since there is the experience of being ignorant to what could possibly be anyway
This is awesome. Only a human being could do that.
[there is a moment of silence]
Many people want to find a solution for the hole that is at the core of their being - that is where Religion comes from.
Precisely, Bob. Please refer to my "portable de'trop" pseudo-manuscript in the essays thread and read the part about the "psychological motive" of religion.
That's just it! Right there, man. Religion is a solution
. For there to be a solution, there must be a problem. How unfortunate it is that man's highest aspirations, his belief in gods, can be equated with going to the pharmacy to get a pain-killer perscription because "life sucks." Hey, wait a minute, pal. I
didn't say life sucked, I said that when a belief comes about that has its origins as a compensation for a loss
, and does nothing but act as a justification for that loss, it has, no, it must have, negative value. It is a contingency plan.
When you see people in celebration over their "gods," declaring that life is good and dancing around singing hymns, this is after the fact that first this god had to represent a solution for the elementary problems and anxiety the we experience at the start. If this god promises an excuse
for our existence, an award for our tribulations, maybe even an eternal life(in one form or another: reincarnated cow, disembodied spirit, whatever your taste), we will be more likely to dance around the fire in praise. Why can't we just accept that we all die, destroy the earth, and war against each other for no appearant reason, and that this is how God wants it?
Never thought about it that way, eh?
There's something fishy going on here, Bob. Look at those Baptists with poisonous snakes around their necks! Dancing around chanting. Its cool because God has already promised redemption from an otherwise miserable life. "I once was a drinkin' man, but now I found da Lord," (a few anonymous "AMEN's!" can be heard over the audience), as the crippled, exploited Vietnam vet turns his wheel-chair around and rolls off the stage, going back to the mental ward where he plays checkers all day with the other nuts.
Life is good at planet earth.
The fact is that all over the world, people experience a phenomenon that equates to the experience of others, it causes a common frame of mind which changes the people in a similar way, independent of cultural background. That is what Mysticism is all about
This is all approximations, Bob. Mysticism accounts for your famous "inexplicable phenomena," and as such it remains obscure. If there are similiar experiences being experienced by other people throughout the world, that is acceptable. If you are trying to say that this involves a study other than what science(or our epiphenomena) can provide, that it is a "mysticism," then you have to distinguish mysticism from science and philosophy and show me the tenents and why they are different. Remember, I am willing to go as far as Descartes(excepting his ontology and belief in God), and will allow for "consciousness" to have its own study. But this doesn't mean that we can go crazy with mysticism and posit consciousness as independent of the material world. Which is usually the medium between mysticism and religion: the concept of "spirit." This is in the cultural background of most all theistic religions...they all have that in common and rely on the gray area to even exist.
Something fishy is going on,Bob.
I don't feel the need to respond to the rest of your post because I know one thing here and now. Whatever you say cannot rely on any "scripture" to be true. Unless, of course, you are narrating stories and proverbs. You have a lot of good ideas, but you don't know that I know that these ideas do not depend on scripture, that these ideas exist without it, and that it would be possible for you to have these ideas in the event that you never found the scriptures in the first place.
I DON'T CARE WHAT THE SCRIPTURES SAY.
I care what Bob says, unless he begins writing scriptures.