Jonas E. Alexis graduated from Avon Park High School, studied mathematics and philosophy as an undergraduate at Palm Beach Atlantic University, and has a master's degree in education from Grand Canyon University.

Some of his main interests include the history of Christianity, U.S. foreign policy, the history of the Israel/Palestine conflict, and the history of ideas. He is the author of the new book ,Christianity & Rabbinic Judaism: A History of Conflict Between Christianity and Rabbinic Judaism from the first Century to the Twenty-first Century.

He is currently teaching mathematics in South Korea. He plays soccer and basketball in his spare time. He is also a cyclist. He is currently writing a book tentatively titled Zionism and the West.

Alexis welcomes comments, letters, and queries in order to advance, explain, and expound rational and logical discussion on issues such as the Israel/Palestine conflict, the history of Christianity, and the history of ideas.

In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, Alexis asks that all queries be appropriately respectful and maintain a level of civility. As the saying goes, “iron sharpens iron,” and the best way to sharpen one’s mind is through constructive criticism, good and bad.

However, Alexis has no patience with name-calling and ad hominem attack. He has deliberately ignored many queries and irrational individuals in the past for this specific reason—and he will continue to abide by this policy.


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God and the Intellectuals (Part I)

 

“For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pull himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.”—Agnostic Astronomer Robert Jastrow[1]

 

…by Jonas E. Alexis

 

During the early part of the twentieth century, one popular movement among philosophers was logical positivism, which limited truth to what could be empirically verified by the five senses or experience.

At its core, the movement sought to deconstruct revelation—chiefly theological assertions—or anything else that appeared to be beyond the five senses.[2] If something cannot be verified by the five senses, logical positivists dismissed them as meaningless.

Over the course of more than a decade, logical positivists launched their ideas with great energy and passion, willing to crush anyone who stood in their way.

Yet the movement could not gain much intellectual ground because its founding principle was self-defeating.

After all, can the proposition “any statement that cannot be empirically verified is meaningless” itself be empirically verified? No. It is an axiomatic proposition—nothing less, nothing more. In the end, logical positivism ceased to carry any intellectual weight and quietly slipped out of academia, although it continued to impact many people.

Of course, the verification principle was later modified by people like Sir A. J. Ayer in Language, Truth, and Logic, but that modification itself was fraught with logical inconsistency.

Ayer, who was largely responsible for spreading the gospel of logical positivism in England,[3] asserted in 1936 that “a proposition is said to be verifiable, in the strong sense of the term, if, and only if, its truth could be conclusively established by experience.”[4]

Yet this bold proposition fails to pass its own test. Ayer seems to have foreseen the implication of the statement, and moves on to declare that “if we adopt conclusive verifiability as our criterion of significance, as some positivists have proposed, our argument will prove too much.”[5]

Ayer was, in the words of Paul Johnson, a “passionate disciple” of Bertrand Russell,[6] who was also a logical positivist.

Johnson was a close friend of both Russell and Ayer and discussed deep issues with them frequently.

Bertrand Russell

By the 1970s, logical positivism was almost universally derided for its lack of intellectual rigor and obvious inability to cope with the experiential and scientific world.[7] Even Karl Popper, a noted Jewish philosopher of science, argued that at its eventual root, logical positivism would undermine the nature of the scientific enquiry.[8]

Popper was right, for the scientific enterprise is based on assumptions and presuppositions, and many conclusions are drawn using inference to the best explanations.[9]

The fact is that science itself is based on fundamental assumptions that cannot be proven by the scientific method—assumptions like the universe is rational, that it obeys mathematical and scientific laws, and that the rationality of the universe can be understood and can correspond to the rational human mind.

These assumptions are essential to science and yet they have not been proven by the scientific method. Moreover, these assumptions are perfectly congruent with the Christian and Muslim understanding.[10]

It was not just the sciences that are at stake, however, but ethical values and inferences, as well as history, because it by nature includes so many assumptions, many of which will be examined in the next two articles. For this reason, logical positivism was largely abandoned.

Even Ayer—the man who brought the movement to England—suddenly abandoned his atheist/agnostic stance after a near-death experience. He privately told his physician, Jeremy George, “I saw a Divine Being. I’m afraid I’m going to have to revise all my various books and opinions.”[11]

Yet in order to maintain his prestige as a philosopher, Ayer never mentioned this to anyone—not even his wife or son. George later wrote,

“He was confiding in me, and I think he was slightly embarrassed because it was unsettling for him as an atheist. He spoke in a very confidential manner. I think he felt he had come face to face with God, or his maker, or what one might say was God. Later, when I read his article, I was surprised to see he had left out all mention of it. I was simply amused. I wasn’t very familiar with his philosophy at the time of the incident, so the significance wasn’t immediately obvious.”[12]

 

David Hume

Clearly Ayer was more interested in promoting his intellectual image than coming to grips with the afterlife. As he said in the essay written after his experience, “I trust that my remaining an atheist will allay the anxieties of my fellow supporters of the Humanist Association, the Rationalist Press, and the South Place Ethical Society.”[13]

As philosopher of science James Ladyman shows, logical positivism, though it appears to be quite young, actually had its inception in the eighteenth century in David Hume’s empiricism.[14]

Hume set a principle in his Inquiry Concerning Human Understanding that later proved self-destructive to his critique of theology (mainly Christian theology). He wrote,

“If we take in our hand any volume; of divinity or school metaphysics, for instance; let us ask, Does it contain any abstract reasoning concerning quantity or number? No. Does it contain any experimental reasoning concerning matter of fact and existence? No. Commit it then to the flames: for it can contain nothing but sophistry and illusion.”[15]

As some writers later proved, Hume’s bold declaration should have been dismissed with little thought or mental exercise, for it is neither mathematical nor scientific.[16] Moreover, Hume’s famous claims against miracles have also been proved completely erroneous.[17] He knew virtually nothing about the probability calculus that was later developed by mathematicians which seems to suggest that there is more to theological assertions than meets the eye and ear.

But—illogic notwithstanding—Hume’s dictum got refined and sharpened in the early 1920s among a group of mathematicians, scientists and philosophers called the Vienna Circle. Ladyman declares,

“Many of the Vienna Circle were Jewish and/or socialists. The rise of fascism in Nazi Germany led to their dispersal to America and elsewhere, where the ideas and personalities of logical positivism had a great influence on the development of both science and philosophy.”[18]

The philosophical idea of logical positivism was closely linked to naturalism, which simply says that nature is all that exists. Both ideas discount the existence of anything outside of what can be verified by our senses.

However, as attractive as this result was (and is) to many, logical positivism proved to be less than logical and had to be discarded.

The modern incarnation of logical positivism is relativism. Relativism in its metaphysical and categorical forms is neither logical nor coherent, and therefore cannot possibly be true.

Consider for example the person who utters the phrase, “There is no such thing as absolute truth.” This statement is either absolutely true or absolutely false. If it is true, then the statement logically self destructs, for it is nonsensical to assert absolutely that absolute truth doesn’t exist. On the other hand, if it is false, then we have no reason to believe anything the person says.

Let’s move this argument into a moral arena so that we get an accurate description of what is at stake here. If truth is simply based on cultural bias, individual preference, majority vote, or any other subjective criteria, we cannot say that the actions of Joseph Stalin or Mao Zedong were morally wrong.

Making any kind of moral statement proves that, at some level, human beings all act as though truth is absolute, no matter what we say we believe.

In the real world, moral truth must exist. If it does not, then we have no foundation from which to judge the numerous crimes against humanity that have been committed in the last century alone and prevent future human rights violations.

 Moral truth must also be objective—bigger than humanity itself. It cannot be based on mere social contract, as Jean-Jacques Rousseau would argue,[19] or on “the community of individuals,” as Bertrand Russell[20] would say, or even on what you and I agree is right. Otherwise moral truth will constantly be redefined to fit the inclinations and ambitions of selfish men and women.

This was illustrated by Mao Zedong. Mao did not consult the laws of major nations to define basic human rights. Instead, he defined morality in terms of what he liked and disliked.

Mao Zedong

“Morality does not have to be defined in relation to others,” he said unapologetically. “Some say one has a responsibility for history. I don’t believe it. I am only concerned about developing myself…I have my desire and act on it. I am responsible to no one.”[21]

Mao’s subjective morality was eventually responsible for taking the lives of more than forty million people, according to historian Frank Dikotter of the University of Hong Kong, who has written a book about Mao based on documents from the Chinese archives.[22]

The fact is that history has proven time and again that mere agreement between those in power is not enough to safeguard against atrocity. Even if we grant relativists the premise that objective morality is based on the “pressure of the community on the individual,”[23] they still must face the ultimate question of why they are accepting the moral values of the community, since they believe that in the end everything will collapse.

Russell, after pondering the ultimate end of human existence, declared that humanity’s achievements will “inevitably be buried beneath the debris of a universe in ruins—all these things, if not quite beyond dispute, are yet so nearly certain, that no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand.”[24]

Russell follows this with a conclusion based solely on his atheistic worldview: “Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul’s habitation henceforth be safely built.”[25]

With such a cheerful outlook, it is no wonder why a reputable mathematician and philosopher like Bertrand Russell lived a life of despair, while his daughter, Katherine Tait, was able to make peace with the Christianity that Russell had attacked so vigorously.[26] And don’t forget that Russell was a logical positivist.

 If communal agreement is proven not to be a valid foundation for morality, many turn to a biological explanation. Philosopher of science and atheist Michael Ruse of Florida State University (who has become progressively more honest in recent years[27]) wrote back in 1989 that the best that can be said about morality is that it is a biological adaptation.

Michael Ruse

“I appreciate when somebody says ‘Love thy neighbor as thyself,’ they think they are referring above and beyond themselves…Nevertheless, to a Darwinian evolutionist it can be seen that such reference is truly without foundation. Morality is just an aid to survival and reproduction…an ephemeral product of the evolutionary process, just as are other adaptations. It has no existence or being beyond this, and any deeper meaning is illusory.”[28]

Bertrand Russell likewise noted in Why I Am Not a Christian that “outside human desire there is no moral standard.”[29] (By the way, after I became a Christian, I was hoping that Russell’s Why I Am Not a Christian would disprove the tenets of Christianity. I was very disappointed after I’ve read it. The book is fraught with circular arguments, illogical leaps, and indefensible conclusions. More on that on a specific article.)

Although this view of morality is extremely prevalent (to the point of becoming axiomatic), it categorically fails to correspond to the real world as we know it, for we constantly refer to universal moral laws either directly or indirectly.

To return to real-world illustrations, objective moral truth simply states that Stalin was wrong irrespective of what he and the Bolsheviks believed, and Mao was wrong despite his evolutionary belief that those who could not adapt to his ethical codes had to vanish.

Michael Ruse’s definition certainly suffers badly here. Who are we to say that these leaders were wrong if in fact they were simply following relativistic principles to their logical conclusions?

Yet everyone feels in his or her soul that the atrocities against humanity these leaders carried out are in fact wrong.

Yet although many lack a firm foundation for their denial of absolute truth, they remain adamantly opposed to it.

Richard Dawkins demonstrated some years ago where his atheistic worldview is taking him in his widely read book River Out of Eden: A Darwinian View of Life.

 “In a universe of blind physical forces and genetic replication, some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won’t find any rhyme or reason in it, nor any justice. The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil, and no good, nothing but blind pitiless indifference… DNA neither knows nor cares. DNA just is. And we just dance to its music.”[30]

On a philosophical level, Dawkins is quick to assert that there is no good or evil. However, on a practical level, he lives by the principle that good and evil do exist. Otherwise, how can he logically write The God Delusion?

If Dawkins truly believes that there is no rhyme or reason to the universe, then why is he so angry at both the Old and the New Testament? On what grounds can he rationally condemn Stalin? Wasn’t he just dancing to the music of his DNA?

On the eve of his intellectual fame, Dawkins was asked the following question:

 “Suppose some lads break into an old man’s house and kill him.  Suppose they say: ‘Well, we accept the evolutionist worldview. He was old and sick, and he didn’t contribute anything to society.’ How would you show them that what they had done was wrong?”

Listen to Dawkins’ response very carefully:

“If somebody used my views to justify a completely self-centered lifestyle, which involved trampling all over other people in any way they chose, roughly what, I suppose, at a sociological level Darwinists did, I think I would be fairly hard put to it to argue on purely intellectual grounds. I think it would be more: ‘This is not a society in which I wish to live. Without having a rational reason for it, necessarily, I’m going to do whatever I can to stop you doing this.’”

The brilliant interviewer then pressed the question forward. “They’ll say, ‘This is the society we want to live in.’”

Dawkins replied,

“I couldn’t, ultimately, argue intellectually against somebody who did something I found obnoxious. I think I could finally only say, ‘Well, in this society you can’t get away with it’ and call the police. I realize this is very weak, and I’ve said I don’t feel equipped to produce moral arguments in the way I feel equipped to produce arguments of a cosmological and biological kind.”[31]

Morality, as defined from within a purely atheistic worldview, is merely a social construct. In a widely viewed debate between philosopher William Lane Craig and Massimo Pigliucci (evolutionary biologist and Chair of the Department of Philosophy at the University of New York), Pigliucci unambiguously stated,

 “There is no such thing as objective morality. We got that straightened out. Morality in human cultures has evolved and is still evolving, and what is moral for you might not be moral for the guy next door and certainly is not moral for the guy across the ocean.”[32]

G. K. Chesterton

There is certainly an obvious contradiction among atheists in this area. G. K. Chesterton points out the futility of their thinking this way:

“The new rebel is a Skeptic, and will not entirely trust anything. He has no loyalty…and the fact that he doubts everything really gets in his way when he wants to denounce anything. For all denunciation implies a moral doctrine of some kind; and the modern revolutionist doubts not only the institution he denounces, but the doctrine by which he denounces it…

“As a politician, he will cry out that war is a waste of life, and then, as a philosopher, that all life is a waste of time. A Russian pessimist will denounce a policeman for killing a peasant, and then prove by the highest philosophical principles that the peasant ought to have killed himself. A man denounces marriage as a lie, and then denounces aristocratic profligates for treating it as a lie.

“He calls a flag a bauble, and then blames the oppressors of Poland or Ireland because they take away that bauble. The man of this school goes first to a political meeting, where he complains that savages are treated as if they were beasts; then he takes his hat and umbrella and goes to a scientific meeting, where he proves that they practically are beasts.

“In short, the modern revolutionist, being an infinite skeptic, is always engaged in undermining his own mines. In his book on politics he attacks men for trampling on morality; in his book on ethics he attacks morality for trampling on men. Therefore the modern man in revolt has become practically useless for all purposes of revolt. By rebelling against everything, he has lost his right to rebel against anything.”[33]

Chesterton certainly nails it. If there is no such thing as good and evil, it would be a perfectly legitimate parallel argument to say that there are no real differences between a Richard Dawkins or a psychopath, a Sam Harris or a serial killer, a Daniel Dennett or a suicide bomber.

Without an objective moral reference, the world becomes neutral grey, with no idea or action ranked better or worse than anything else. No one can ever claim they have been wronged, no one can rely on unalienable human rights, and no one can expect justice or fairness.

Dawkins and others simply cannot have it both ways, and their contradictory beliefs and behaviors prove just why relativism does not work in the real world.

 Let me make it clear here that I am not arguing for an epistemological foundation of objective moral values, but rather for an ontological foundation of objective moral values.

In other words, I am not saying that an atheist does not or cannot make reference to an objective moral value, or that moral values are the sole province of religious people. Neither the atheist nor the theist needs God to recognize morality. It is ingrained in human nature.

Emmanuel Kant

For example, if a sexual predator rapes a twelve-year-old child, both the theist and the atheist would say that this act is morally wrong.

Some have called this the law of human nature.[34] Even Emmanuel Kant, one of the toughest philosophers during the end of the eighteenth century, made this stunning statement in his Critique of Practical Reason:

“Two things fill the mind with ever new and increasing admiration and awe, the more oftener and the more steadily we reflect upon them: the starry heavens above me and the moral law within me.”[35]

Kant made it clear that ethical values are completely independent of our happiness.[36] If they are independent of our happiness, then ethical values lie somewhere else. Therefore, Kant, whether he liked it or not, was arguing from an implicitly Christian viewpoint. Pure reason, ultimately, leads to the Logos.

Pure reason, like mathematics or physics, is non-negotiable and is completely compatible with the Christian worldview.

So let’s break it down into simple terms. All people can agree that it is wrong to steal, covet another man’s wife, or torture and rape little children. The question is where did that objective moral judgment come from? We know that it is not from Darwinism (a topic I will go into in more details in future articles).

Let me be crystal clear before we move on—I am not claiming that atheists cannot live moral lives or appeal to moral objectivity. To a large degree, both theists and atheists appeal to objective moral values and truths.

Sam Harris agrees with the premise that objective moral values do exist.[37] What he disagrees with, however, is that such values cannot exist without God; for him, objective moral values can be explained through the emergence of the scientific enterprise.

Yet not one Darwinian principle suggests that objective moral values are independent of what you and I think. Therefore, the core issue is not whether objective moral values exist, but whether objective (ontological) moral values can exist without God. One well-known philosopher who clearly understood that there were no morals without God is Friedrich Nietzsche.

Friedrich Nietzsche

Nietzsche took that principle to its logical, bitter end,[38] something that Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins and others have not been willing to do.

Not only does Harris fail to give us a rigorous scientific rubric by which to examine the thesis that “science can determine human values,” but he moves on to tell us that moral responsibility “is a social construct that can make more or less sense given certain facts about a person’s brain.”[39]

With nowhere else to turn, Harris jumps to determinism. Citing neuroscientist Michael Gazzaniga, he agrees that “in neuroscientific terms, no person is more or less responsible than any other for actions.”[40]

We will return to this premise in a future article. For now, though, let’s continue our discussion of objective values in the cultural realm of relativism.

Relativism also does not work within the world’s major religions, for all religions make exclusive claims that simply cannot be reconciled. Islam teaches that Christ did not die on the cross, Rabbinic Judaism is still looking for its Messiah, and Christianity declares that Christ has already appeared, died, and rose again.

 Buddha, the figurehead for Hindu beliefs, rejected both the Vedas and the caste system, which are fundamentally essential to Hinduism.[41] He even rejected the existence of the supernatural altogether,[42] while other religions affirm it.[43]

Given this widespread dichotomy, it is nonsensical to say that all these religions teach the same things or that they lead to the same conclusions. While they may share many themes in common here and there, ultimately they make exclusive claims that are vital to their continued existence.

Moreover, it is completely irrational to say that all these religions lead to the same God. Oprah Winfrey, one of the most influential women in America, says,

“I’m a Christian who believes that there are certainly many more paths to God other than Christianity.”[44]

Although many paths claim to lead to what one might call god, it contradicts logic to say that all those religions lead to the same God or gods. As Ravi Zacharias, an expert on world religions, points out,

“All religions are not the same. All religions do not point to God. All religions do not say that all religions are the same. At the heart of every religion is an uncompromising commitment to a particular way of defining who God is or is not and, accordingly, of defining life’s purpose.”[45]

Jesus declares, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6). Can we honestly say that Jesus and other religions are equally right—when they clearly contradict each other—and still remain reasonable?

More importantly, what are the features that enable an individual to be “inclusive” or “exclusive” and still remain rational?

It is not illogical to be exclusive, since rationality demands it.[46] It is much more rational to be exclusive when all the religions are contradictory.

The fact is that Jesus is not being irrational when He proclaims that there is only one way to get to God. His claim is perfectly within the realm of the reasonable. In that context, the rational human response is to discover where the rational and irrational exist in the major religions and to discern whether exclusivity is based on truth or not.

It is not narrow-minded to reject contradictions, nor is it irrational to argue that one religion might be telling the truth, wherever that religion may lead. According to the basic principles of logical consistency, contradictory religious claims cannot all be right at the same time and in the same respect.

As a corollary, there is an often ignored but vital principle that must be clearly emphasized here:

Philosophically, the denial of the only way is another only way. Rejecting any religion on the grounds of exclusivity means setting up an opposing but equally exclusive belief system.

Once a person states that “Christ is not the only way—there are more ways to God,” he has made an implicit “only-way” claim. If the person protests that he is not making an “only-way” claim, but merely accepting other views into his equation, then logically he has to accept the possibility that Christ could be right, which would negate his stated claim.

Either his process of logical reasoning is flawed or he is grasping at straws in order to justify his claim.

Finally, it is irrational for anyone to claim that because all religions, at bottom, contradict each other, therefore none of them is telling the truth. If I cannot find an answer to a math problem, or happen to arrive at an answer that contradicts what my friends come up with, it does not necessarily follow that the answer cannot be found or that there simply is no answer at all.

It must be said that truth sometimes does not bring good news. For example, if a doctor finds out that one of his patients has terminal cancer, he is obligated to tell the man the truth about his condition. It would be morally irresponsible for the doctor to say, “Don’t worry, my friend. Everything is all right. Just take this pill or that medicine and your pain will be gone forever.”

Although it would be much easier to lie and spare the patient worry—and although it would be compatible with the relativistic premises we have just discussed—the doctor would put his credibility at stake for lying to the patient. He would not be a doctor for long, once the truth came out.

More importantly, the patient would not want his doctor to behave as a relativist, since going to the doctor implies that he believes truth about his condition exists and that he wants to be told that truth.

However idealistic someone’s opinions may be concerning relativistic ideology, he or she will live as if truth matters when it comes to going to the doctor, buying a car, or paying taxes and bills—the simple truth is that you won’t have running water or electricity if you don’t pay your bills. Although it may be painful to accept the truth, in the end it will be worth it, for only truth has the ability to liberate us from falsehood and intellectual bondage.


[1] Robert Jastrow, God and the Astronomers (New York: Readers Library Inc., 1992), 107.

[2]See James Ladyman, Understanding Philosophy of Science (New York: Routledge, 2002),  147-150.

[3] Ibid., 149.

[4]A. J. Ayers, Language, Truth and Logic (New York: Dover Publications, 1952), 37.

[5] Ibid.

[6]Paul Johnson, The Quest for God (New York: HarperCollins, 1996), 21.

[7]See Ladyman, Understanding Philosophy of Science, 154.

[8]See Karl Popper, The Logic of Scientific Discovery.

[9]For a technical study, see Peter Lipton, Inference to the Best Explanation (New York: Routledge, 1991).

[10]For further study, see John D. Barrow, Impossibility: The Limits of Science and the Science of Limits (New York: Oxford University Press, 1998); Muzaffar Iqbal, Science & Islam (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2007); Ahmad Y Hassan and Donald Routledge Hill, Islamic Technology: An Illustrated History (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1986); George Saliba, A History of Arabic Astronomy: Planetary Theories During the Golden Age of Islam (New York: New York University Press, 1994).

[11] Peter Foges, “An Atheist Meets the Masters of the Universe,” Lapham’s Quarterly, March 8, 2010.

[12]Ibid. Ayer cannot be the only atheist to admit this when faced with his own mortality.

[13] A. J. Ayer, “What I Saw When I Was Dead” (available at http://commonsenseatheism.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/Ayer-What-I-Saw-When-I-Was-Dead.pdf.

[14]Ladyman, Understanding Philosophy of Science, 148.

[15]David Hume, An Inquiry Concerning Human Understanding and Other Essays (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2007), 144.

[16]See Ravi Zacharias, Jesus Among Other Gods.

[17] For a technical study, see John Earman, Hume’s Abject Failure: The Argument Against Miracle (New York: Oxford University Press); Francis Beckwith, David Hume’s Argument Against Miracles (Lanham: University Press, of America, 1989).

[18]Ladyman, Understanding Philosophy of Science, 148-149.

[19]See Jean-Jacques Rousseau, The Social Contract (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1997).

[20]See Bertrand Russell, Human Society in Ethics and Politics (New York: Routledge, 2010).

[21]Jung Chang and Jon Halliday, Mao: The Unknown Story (New York: Knopf, 2005), 13.

[22]Frank Dikotter, Mao’s Great Famine (New York: Walking Publishing, 2010).

[23]Russell, Human Society, 113.

[24]Bertrand Russell, Mysticism and Logic & Other Essays (New York: Cornell University Press, 1918), 48.

[25] Ibid.

[26]See Katherine Tait, My Father, Bertrand Russell (New York: Harcourt, Brace, 1975).

[27] See Michael Ruse, “Accomodationism in the Religion-Science Debate: Why It’s Incomplete,” Huffington Post, November 6, 2010; Michael Ruse, Science and Spirituality: Making Room for Faith in the Age of Science (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010).

[28]Michael Ruse, The Darwinian Paradigm: Essays on its History, Philosophy, and Religious Implications (New York: Routledge, 1989), 268-269.

[29]Bertrand Russell, Why I Am Not a Christian and Other Essays (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1957), 62.

[30]Richard Dawkins, River Out of Eden: A Darwinian View of Life (New York: Basic Books, 1995), 133.

[31] Nick Pollard, “The Simple Answer,” Third Way, April 1995, 16-19 (archived at www.ThirdWayMagazine.co.uk).

[32]For a transcript of the debate, visit William Lane Craig’s website, ReasonableFaith.org.

[33]G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy (London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1996), 52-53.

[34]C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity (New York: HarperCollins, 1980), chapter 1.

[35]Emmanuel Kant, Critique of Practical Reason (New York: Classic Books Intl., 2010), 163.

[36]For an analysis, see Ravi Zacharias, Can Man Live Without God?, 37-40, 201-203.

[37]Sam Harris, The Moral Landscape: How Science Can Determine Human Values (New York:  Free Press, 2010), 46.

[38] See for example Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra and Beyond Good and Evil.

[39]Harris, The Moral Landscape, 217.

[40] Ibid.

[41] See Zacharias, Jesus Among Other Gods.

[42]Rodney Stark, One True God: Historical Consequences of Monotheism (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2001), 11-12.

[43] This is why atheists like Sam Harris prefer Buddhism as a replacement for other religions. “The Buddhist tradition…represents the richest source of contemplative wisdom that any civilization has produced. In a world that has long been terrorized by fratricidal Sky-God religions, the ascendance of Buddhism would surely be a welcome development.” (Sam Harris, “Killing the Buddha,” Shambhala Sun, July 2009.)

[44]Erwin Lutzer, Oprah, Miracles, and the New Earth, 14.

[45]Ravi Zacharias, Jesus Among Other Gods, 7.

[46]For a sociological perspective, see Rodney Stark, One True God: Historical Consequences of Monotheism (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2001) and Discovering God: The Origins of the Great Religions and the Evolution of Belief (New York: HarperOne, 2007).

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39 Responses to "God and the Intellectuals (Part I)"

  1. Excalibur  July 13, 2013 at 5:47 pm

    I have always thought it so strange that those who do not believe in God should become so heated and frantic in denouncing God Himself – and in belittling those who do believe in Him. Why all the vitriol? Perhaps those people should consider whether they are actually being used themselves – or programmed by their ‘education’ to go on the attack with such gusto?

    Christianity is not a supremacist sect. It offers a religion that promotes you to love God with all your heart – and to love your neighbour as your self. Should this offend anyone else? It does not demand that anyone believes in it – and it does not call for any physical punishment for those that abuse or leave the Church. Genuine Christian communities in the countryside are generally pleasant places to live – and they are often the places that atheists head out to as refugees in order to escape living in the horror of large Godless towns; (where lets face it – life is not so pleasant).

    Wrongdoers that happen to be Christian are not therefore acting on behalf of the Church! They are acting in contravention of it with what is referred to as sin – transgressions against Christianity.

    I can understand when some atheists might object to a religious or Christian standpoint if they have not yet found their Faith. I cannot, however, understand why they become so intense and irate about something in which they do not even believe.

  2. Not Clueless  July 12, 2013 at 9:03 pm

    @John
    Well, you pretty much nailed it! One problem – the same evildoers responsible for the long list of atrocities of your rant are also in control of “science and logic”. Let me break it down for you:

    EVERYTHING YOU EVER BELIEVED WAS TRUE – IS A LIE!

    All you really need to know. Oh, about that science thing – ever check out the extremely long list of dead microbiologists? Funny how so very many of them died before their time and in such mysterious ways!

  3. Not Clueless  July 12, 2013 at 8:43 pm

    If God is the ONE – the ALL – why would anyone think he only possesses positive characteristics? If there is white, there must be black; up/down; left/right; good/evil; positive/negative. God is EVERYTHING – He is in us and we are in Him. Apparently, it was God’s desire to experience his creation that has resulted in what we are experiencing now, in the past, and in other dimensions/densities/universes – simultaneously! (Bet that blows your mind!) The “universe” is a school for us to “learn our lessons”. We begin at the bottom as 1st density – the lowest form of conciousness and work our way up. 1/2/3D are all purely physical densities. 4th is part physical/part etheral. 5th is what we would considered “heaven” or the contemplation level. 6th is completely etheral – enitities are “unified thought forms”:

    “This term is used by the Cassiopaea and Ra channeled sources to denote their ‘native’ state of being. Also the inspiration for the Bringers of the Dawn book is according to these same sources from 6th density. Most crop circles are, according to the Cassiopaeans, produced by entities of 6th density. Many so called wanderers are souls whose home density is the sixth but who have taken incarnation in human form for a specific mission.

    We cannot say much that is concrete or verifiable about this subject. Still, since the subject of sixth density relates to much of the inspiration of the present work, we must attempt to place this in some context. The archangels or solar world of the Gurdjieffian cosmology may refer to sixth density. The dhyanic beings or solar beings of Steiner’s cosmology may refer to sixth density. The Absolute II of Mouravieff, i.e. the world of all stars and the Christ may be in some relation to sixth density. The comparisons are tentative and we can hardly produce contradiction free or definite descriptions of this level.

    The sixth density or 6D is a level of non-material existence where souls have outgrown the need to incarnate in any density. Souls of 1st through 4th densities go through incarnations, with a contemplation period as non-material forms in fifth density in between. 6D is the last stage before union with the One, or seventh density. Seventh density would correspond to the one source of all creation, God the Father of Mouravieff or the Sun Absolute of Gurdjieff.

    As with 4D, there is still a concept of individual entities forming social memory complexes, i.e. communities where entities all share the same database of experience and understandings. The esoteric level of human development where understandings are unified through practice of objectivity and where integrity does not allow mismatch of action and understanding would be a precursor of the social memory complex of 4-6D.”

    Read more at _http://glossary.cassiopaea.com/glossary.php?id=79

    It’s about balance – earth and humanity are extremely out of balance to the negative polarity at this point. Lies and deception and belief in lies generate a negative charge and invite/will bring about cosmic destruction/correction. Holding onto lies ensures your demise!

  4. Not Clueless  July 12, 2013 at 8:14 pm

    @Gerry Kraut

    I will attempt to answer your inquiry as briefly as I can because if I get too long-winded, I get a chastising email! I would again like to reiterate that I’m not an expert and that there is really no way to know with absolute certainty what the TRUTH actually is – all we can do is keep seeking it, attempt to find good, solid sources, and maybe trust our guts (they are our 2nd brains after all)! Do realize that the hyperdimensionals have been tricking humankind for centuries – very likely that some of the prominent religious visions were their doing. Just think how convincing something like that would be! If you haven’t read books by John Keel, I highly recommend them.

    Don’t know if you’ve ever checked out any of the Freeman stuff or Vigilant Citizen. All these secret societies (well, just the fact they are secret speaks volumes) I believe are part of the “Hidden Hand” – at least those at the top. I think the lower ranks just believe they are actually doing charitable good works and don’t have a problem with all the bizarre rituals they have to comply with to join and move up – go figure! Plus, there is the symbol aspect of Freemasonry. Freeman has done a great deal to expose that part of the organization; he should know – both parents were members and his dad in particular was a very high ranking Freemason. If I remember correctly, his dad worked on one of the nuclear subs connected w/ (Pres) Jimmy Carter? Freeman’s expose of corporate logos is something to behold! Now that I’ve seen the Symbols of an Alien Sky and the Thunderbolts of the gods videos, it all makes a lot more sense now. These symbols must have some power over humans in that we must have encoded memories of ancient times and calamities – perhaps in our “junk” DNA? The PTB know and understand this and continue to saturate our environment with these symbols and symbolic numbers. At least, that’s what I think at this point.

    My understanding is that the hyperdimensionals are 4th density STS entities and their sustenance is negatively charged emotional vibes (for lack of a better word) that is generated by extreme pain/anguish/suffering – i.e. “loosh” – a word I picked up from a different source than Robert A. Monroe. Tortured men/women/children and those that are burned (all those innocent women declared witches and burned at the stake are a part of this) especially purposely and as horribly as possible creates the most and best “food” for them. Burnt offerings and blood sacrifices – human history is rife with both.

    Very briefly looked at Robert Monroe’s wiki and I certainly can say that frequencies and consciousness are a big part (if the not the whole enchilada) to our reality. An enormous subject and I can tell you that I’m into my 4th yr of almost full-time reading and research re what’s really going on and what really IS the truth! My entire outlook has completely changed as a result of the knowledge I’ve become aware of – and I’m just an ordinary average person, but with a compelling drive to seek and find TRUTH. When I became disenchanted with the Bible and religion, Jesus’s insistence that he was TRUTH kept me in – I disregarded the OT, but held onto the principles Jesus affirmed. Still, realizing the divine son of god/immaculate birth/crucifixion narrative were fabrications was quite the shock – my extreme love for Christmas took quite a hit as well. That Zeitgeist vid was such an eye opener! So much we have all been kept in the dark about and grandly/maliciously deceived!

    I think the politicians and such are more of the upper middle layer of deceiver controllers – I seriously doubt we would recognize either the faces or names of the “people” at the very top of the pyramid. These human collaborators are psychopaths and I feel that a great many are aware of the game being played, know exactly what’s coming, and believe they have earned a boarding pass on the “Rapture Express”, so to speak. But that’s the thing about psychopaths – it is IMPOSSIBLE for them to conceive that their grand plans could ever go wrong! Plus, once their usefulness to the 4D controllers is over, they will be “toast” as much as the rest of us!

    4D STO & 6D STO are actively involved – they lost the round that resulted in “the Fall”. They’re not going to lose this time. Doesn’t mean a lot of humanity won’t die in the process, but if you’re a person who truly cares for the well-being of humanity, you want the evil that’s been inflicted for centuries to be ended. We can never hope to be happy and truly free until it is. And although there’s no doubt in my mind of life after death & reincarnation, humanity’s very souls are threatened with destruction at this point. More the reason to STOP BELIEVING LIES – believing, advocating, and affirming TRUTH raises our frequency, a key to humanity’s survival as something other than a biorobotic slave!

    Last but not least – the only way to win is to NOT play the game! Believing THEIR lies is PLAYING THEIR GAME!!!

  5. Jonas E. Alexis  July 12, 2013 at 10:54 am

    Hey Stephen,

    Great question. We will address the problem of evil probably in the third article of the series. It is perhaps the greatest challenge to Christianity, but from an intellectual point of view, it is quite easy. Just hang on to the question for later development. Thanks.

  6. burntwood  July 12, 2013 at 5:34 am

    After “experiencing” seeing a divine spirit, surely it satisfies the logical positivism criteria that the divine spirit exists. But people should be wary in this day and age. The NSA fakes religious experiences using microwave technology!!!!!!!! You can read this leaked document as proof:

    http://nanobrainimplant.com/2013/04/23/nsa-mind-control-and-psyops-2/

    “2. The following is one typical technique used by the NSA. NSA Intelligence gathers information regarding the topic of the sermon in the subject’s church. This information is gathered through electronic surveillance equipment installed in the church. The NSA then implants a posthypnotic command that triggers the subject’s mind into concern and contemplation about the sermon’s topic prior to going to church. When the subject hears the sermon, the sermon seems to be speaking directly to the subject that adds to God’s mysterious and unexplainable ability to address the innermost concerns of the subject, especially when the subject has not shared those concerns with any other human being.”

  7. Not Clueless  July 12, 2013 at 12:33 am

    Jonas, I’m enjoying your prolific writings. Much reading/research of my own has allowed a “larger view”. I’ve become aware of Paleochristianity – the knowledge all men (humanity) had before the Fall. My understanding is the Universe is made of ever changing “realms” or densities – cycles and grand cycles. Preliminary to the last grand cycle/realm border crossing, the group consciousness of humanity was allowed to determine how they wished to manifest in this upcoming grand cycle. Because of “alien” influence [Hey, why don’t you chose to become truly physical so you can have highly pleasurable sex! The consequences were not mentioned: humans would have to work hard to obtain food/childbirth would be painful/etc. and making this type of choice was of a selfish nature and thus, a Service to Self existence was chosen. WE ARE ALL LIVING THE CONSEQUENCES OF THIS SELFISH CHOICE – it is inevitable for a STS world to produce nonstop war, cheating, stealing, pain, suffering, and general destruction of everything good and productive. Because of FREE WILL, humanity was allowed to make this terrible choice and to live with the consequences. The “aliens” are 4th density STS entities that feed on negative emotional “loosh” – the horrors of war are a nonstop banquet for them! They have enlisted the help of psychopaths to ensure they maintain the status quo now and into the next grand cycle/realm border crossing – the “new world” / “new kingdom”, i.e. 4th density earth – a part physical/part etheral realm of existence.]

    I’m thinking the “Golden Age” was the teaser to make humanity believe they made the right choice – and then the boom was lowered! Cosmic catastrophe followed by behind the scenes control (the Hidden Hand) of our existence ever since. Different varieties of humans were bioengineered in the area of Orion (source of the word origin) and then “seeded” onto earth according to genetic attributes – blacks to Africa/Asians to Far East/Nordics to northern lands, etc. So actually, humans WERE intelligently designed! Of course, our consciousness/souls existed before they were implanted into their earthly physical bodies. The “aliens” (actually hyperdimensional entities) are of 4th density and have difficulty manifesting into 3rd density – our present level of existence. It requires blood and that is the real reason for the cattle and other animal mutilations. They created the Grays as biorobots that can manifest much more readily on 3rd density. However, the hyperdimensionals who are 30 to 40,000 years more evolved than we are, have been hard at work developing hybrids that can easily manifest between the two densities. And that is really the master plan – the human population is going to be the “containers” for these mass produced hybrids – or at least that’s the plan! BTW, the nephilim (a race of giants) were here to accomplish the same goal. Size difference prevented actual sex w/ humans – it was all done in labs just like is done to assist fertility challenged couples today. There is plenty of physical evidence of the existence of giants – with their double rows of teeth! Any specimens given to the Smithsonian were never seen again! What a surprise!

    When Jesus was on earth, he taught The Way. Early followers were reviled as the general populace viewed this new way of living one’s life as a “vile superstition”. That’s why hardly anyone objected to them being thrown to the lions – they were not popular! Obviously, the Service to Others aspect could not have elicited such a reaction. What did? It could be that Jesus informed his followers of the reality that not every person who looks human actually is – that some are “transitional humans” – one level up from 2nd density (animals/plants), but not a full-fledged souled human. They are organic portals and psychopaths are “failed organic portals” – they have no conscience / no soul. Well, no surprise about that!

    Now here’s the thing – Adamic souled humans were supposed to manifest in this grand cycle of 3rd density as STO or Service to Others in order to bring the organic portals along the right path of development by their STO influence. Needless to say, our bad choice of Service to Self totally destroyed this plan – this is the meaning of “the Fall”. It has nothing to do with sin. Humanity made a bad choice and because of Free Will, we were allowed to make that choice but also to live with the (extremely dire) consequences. STS existence = destruction of the creative and really all things good/loving/natural. Of course the Universe cannot allow such destruction to continue indefinitely as that would endanger the Universe itself! A cosmic correction is in the process of occurring – along with the impending realm border crossing. Seems a lot like the description of “end times” – and in a way it is. “Time” is a 3rd density reality and once the “veil is lifted”, “time” per se will end – but not existence. There will be a 4th density earth (home turf of the hyperdimensionals and their biorobot grays) as well as a 3rd density (pretty much destroyed/burning earth). 3rd density can see backwards but not forwards – we see 1st density rocks,etc. and 2nd density plants and animals, but remaining inhabitants will not be able to see the 4th density earth. I might add that because organic portals are closer to 2nd density than 3rd, they are more aligned to animalistic characteristics – vegetarian or prey animal instincts. I think we can all agree that psychopaths prey on the human species without qualm and with relish (or maybe ketchup!).

    FYI:
    “Adamic Man
    In Mouravieff’s Gnosis, this refers to a human being who has an individuated soul. Such a person possesses, at least in potential, the so-called higher emotional and higher intellectual centers. Esoteric work is possible and meaningful for the Adamic man.

    The word Adamic refers to the story of the Fall from Eden. Adamic man has known an Edenic state in the past and carries a vague racial recollection of such a golden age, at least unconsciously. This can translate into a quest for spiritual meaning. The Adamic man’s spiritual quest is symbolized by the Biblical parable of the prodigal son, where the far country corresponds to the present Earth.

    Adamic and pre-adamic man are substantially indistinguishable from each other in normal circumstances. Genetic mixing has made it so that either type can occur in the same family.

    In Book III of his Gnosis, Mouravieff discusses what he calls “pre-adamic humanity” and “adamic humanity.” ”

    Read more here:
    _http://glossary.cassiopaea.com/glossary.php?id=88

    @rogelio41 – it’s my understanding that Jesus and Buddha and some notable others are and have performed the same service to humanity for hundreds of years (as measured by earth “time”) – a sacrifice far, far greater than crucifixion – which is really cruciFICTION! The false, corrupted story of who, what, and how Jesus really came to earth and how he left!

    • wolf  July 12, 2013 at 10:26 pm

      I have to commend you NC, for your informative and mind-blowing comments.
      In fact there are MANY great comments in this thread. Almost like some sort of awakening going on.
      And kudos to Jonas for his soul-searching articles that serve as a catalyst. Fantastic.

  8. JL  July 12, 2013 at 12:15 am

    Thanks Jonas.

    I’ve also noticed that careless use of definitions by those populistic protest movements. For example some religious might say that he BELIVES in God. To that some atheist might respond that he KNOWS that God doesn’t exist. Of course the problem here is how to know unknown or nonexisting to which argument was based.

    Similary I’ve heard them using concept of classical probability while proving the birth of life in this Planet. In classical probability all the processes and outcomes are known, while the process of birth of life is unknown. So it makes no sense to use that term. I’ve got the feeling that those protesting theories are just reflections about how the authors of the theories consider themselves, from meaningless to Very Important Person.

    But similary could we speak about Christian unlogic. If we had some average curve of morality versus time, don’t You Jonas think, that at the point Jesus Christ was born, there should be a singular point in this curve? That is before Christ morality was decreasing or maybe sinking, immediately after the born of Christ it’s tangent changed direction and began to increase. If so, how do You explain that, unless before the Christ there was a negative sink of morality and after the Christ there was a positive source of morality.

    In that light, how can Christians read the Old Testament as a Holy book and how can Christians consider that mid-East region as Holy Land before the Christ? The New Testament is Christian Bible and I don’t read OT. Most likely this is quite provoking but here’s what Joe Cortina thinks abou the OT:

    http://mynameisjoecortina.wordpress.com/2013/07/09/the-old-testament-bible-an-x-rated-horror-story-with-war-criminal-cast-of-worlds-worst-jews/

    Most likely the same thing could have been said more smoothly, but similary those ZioChristians could use alternative ways than depleted uranium to express that they’ve had read some of the OT and only OT.

    Oparah Winfrey was wrong, there is no other religion but real Christianity that takes also care about them poorest. Of course ZioChristianity is totally another case.

  9. Mike Kay  July 11, 2013 at 10:55 pm

    Mr. Alexis,
    This piece is target rich, in terms of areas to choose, but for the sake of brevity, I will choose only the following;
    The dualistic dichotomy posited in regards to morality is the result of arrested thinking. Morality can exist as an independent, real principle to scientists, I refer you to the work of Hammerschlag and Penrose here, where quantum physics has taken the first halting steps to attempt to explain consciousness. Certainly, Hammerschlag has been taken to task for his attempt, yet the fact remains that scientists are positing that such principles as morality can have a kind of life of their own.
    It is certainly strange to hear that Christianity is somehow the bastion of morals. Yes, this is congruent with unexamined belief across the western world, and on the surface seems valid enough, with the additional push that it socially acceptable to hold such beliefs. However, the long list of unforgivable crimes perpetrated by Christianity certainly shake the validity of this claim.
    In fact, what we do find when we bother to do the research, is that moral behavior existed in highly developed form all across the Pagan lands long before Christianity came with the sword to conquer. The Druids, for instance, taught their people to avoid doing evil to each other, and to face the challenges of life with courage. The mystery schools educated and initiated their people, both male and female, all the while serving as centers for culture and discourse. Which brings me to the following salient point:
    Christianity never refuted the “Gnostics”, they murdered them. If Christianity had truly refuted the initiates they would have had no need to resort to murder. It was, in fact the veracity of initiates like Simon Magus which ensured that the church would do everything it could to destroy them, and their message. Its easy to claim they were “refuted” now that the temples lay in ruins, the books are all burned, and the people themselves were savaged and condemned by a multitude of fanatical maniacs.
    In fact, what we do find is that the moral mindset of Christianity is very closely associated with “might makes right”. While still in its early phase, Christianity organized and supported violent mobs to destroy their opposition. Here is a good example, the murder of Hypatia.
    So, yes Mr. Alexis, I find it completely laughable that a religion that affixed itself to the ruling elite early on, promoting and excusing their rampages and excesses in exchange for power, could ever make the claim of being the last bastion of morality.
    Exclusivity is a mental disease, and one which supports the predator-prey relationship. The Stockholm syndrome is alive and well with any people who think themselves chosen, saved, redeemed, especially when these people embrace the idea that their suffering carries with it a sense of nobility, extra credit in the eyes of their God. Suffering brings with the justification of inflicting the suffering, and exceptionalism, brings with it justification for the perpetration of all types of crimes.
    In all cases, exceptionalism carries with it a dividing line, one which exalts the recipient, and thus must by definition, reduce the status of others.
    For example, the pages of VT are filled with real life cases of the Chosen ones vs. the goyim. Christianity adopts this same mentality, only changing the names to protect the guilty.
    The amazing thing about people who wear their religions on their sleeve is how quick they are to attack anyone who isn’t accepting of the party line. Mr. Alexis, you have done a good job exposing the crimes of Judaism, ignored completely the crimes of Islam, and made a passing gesture at the crimes of Christianity.
    Ultimately, the question of morality does not come down to an acceptance of one of the Abrahamic religions, and their concept of God, morality comes from guiding principles based on humans being human in a living, numinous world.

    • Jonas E. Alexis  July 12, 2013 at 10:33 am

      Hello Mr. Kay,

      Thanks again for the response. Some of the questions you have raised in your first paragraph will be thoroughly addressed in the next articles.

      I never said that “Christianity is somehow the bastion of morals.” Here’s again what I have plainly written: “Let me make it clear here that I am not arguing for an epistemological foundation of objective moral values, but rather for an ontological foundation of objective moral values. In other words, I am not saying that an atheist does not or cannot make reference to an objective moral value, or that moral values are the sole province of religious people. Neither the atheist nor the theist needs God to recognize morality. It is ingrained in human nature.”

      What I am saying is that there is no way a serious atheist can defend his moral position against another. If you think there is a way to do this, I am willing to listen, and you probably will be the first person in history to do so. Nietzsche, who thought about this for much of his life, understood this principle very well and he was very honest on this point. As I pointed out in the text, Richard Dawkins himself also said the same thing. Kai Nielsen, one of the most trenchant atheists in the twentieth century, came to the same conclusion.

      If God is dead, then objective moral values do not exist. That’s the argument. Don’t get this wrong again: objective moral values–not moral values in themselves.

      You wrote, “The long list of unforgivable crimes perpetrated by Christianity certainly shake the validity of this claim.” This is an illogical leap. Can we seriously disprove a system by its abuse? I have used this example before, but suppose a report came out and declared that 1 million police officers have been guilty of sexual harassment. Should we seriously put our hands in the air and declare that “I guess that shows that the entire police department is a fraud”? If a police officer does not obey the law, is it logical to say that the police department is responsible for this?

      I’m a little bit interested in your view of the Gnostics again. You previously wrote that the Gnostics were a branch of Christianity, but now I’m hearing that “Christianity never refuted the ‘Gnostics,’ they murdered them.” Once again, which one is it? Please check out the sources that I made reference to last time. Christians from time immemorial spent their lives refuting the Gnostics and it is historically dishonest to even make such a statement. Many of the sources I cited last times came from secular historians.

      “While still in its early phase, Christianity organized and supported violent mobs to destroy their opposition.” Authoritative statements built upon authoritative statements are not arguments. You’ve got to have historical arguments and sources for those statements. And it is historically irresponsible to make such an extraordinary claim. Check out Bart Ehrmann on this. He is not a Christian and even takes a radical view of Christianity.

      “Exclusivity is a mental disease, and one which supports the predator-prey relationship.” Is this exclusively and absolutely true or not?

      I have not ignored the crimes done in the name of Christianity, and I have said again and again that I will come back to Christian Zionism as soon as I am done with this series.

      I really appreciate your response, for it does allow our different views to be placed on a rational framework and let readers judge for themselves. Thanks again.

    • Mike Kay  July 12, 2013 at 5:42 pm

      Mr. Alexis,
      You take pains to disassemble the notion of morality without God, even casting Ayer as somewhat of a charlatan, and implying that his experience with the divine carried religious overtones, then you bluntly state that Kant is aping Christian morality, then you claim that you are not making a religious argument for morality.
      OK, Mr. Alexis, this is just too convoluted for me to follow any longer.
      The Christian mob which flat out murdered Hypatia without cause or reason is not an authoritative statement, sir, it is historical fact. Christians cannot run and hide from, or bury, or burn their history any longer, because it is being exposed. I stated quite bluntly that the murder of Hypatia proved unequivocally that Christianity used violence to attack and destroy their opponents. This is historical fact, sir. You are not allowed to dismiss it with ingenious arguments.
      Gnostics=Telestai=Initiates=Mystery Schools. I do not believe that I ever claimed Gnosticism to be a branch of Christianity, although just about every Gnostic scholar today holds this rather bizarre view. The Gnostics held to a mystical discipline of truth through experiential exercise. Christianity has been, and still is largely hostile to all forms of Mysticism.
      No, the Church did not refute the Gnostics. Where, sir, are those Gnostic arguments to prove that Christianity refuted them? Alluded to in piecemeal you say? Gosh, now why would THAT be?
      Here you go,
      Christians say that both divine love and evil arise from the same source. This is the definition of insanity, and Gnostics pointed this out. Do parents show their love for their children by subjecting them to evil? Of course not! Such parents are arrested and prosecuted, yet when it comes to the Jewish God who is the Christian God, insane split source origins for both love and evil are just A-ok.
      I really don’t know how you can claim that the Gnostic explanation for dual source origin was refuted, but then, we all know that Christianity has no rational basis.
      Last I heard, there was still a society dedicated to the concept of a flat Earth, perhaps they think Gnostic dual source origin was refuted as well.
      Christianity never refuted the Gnostics. Thats why they killed them.
      The creation of a chosen people, whether by decree of their God, or through some other mechanism has been behind some of the worst atrocities perpetrated. The Japanese thought themselves a master race, led by a divine being, and they launched into WW2 with this demented mindset. Christianity deems itself superior to Islam, and thus justified in committing horrendous crimes against the Muslim world. These are but two of myriad cases, sir. The evidence is clear.
      Today, the simple reality is that the three Abrahamic religions are bringing humanity to the point of self extermination. Would they be accomplishing this act of destruction if they were intrinsically good, moral and true?

    • Jonas E. Alexis  July 13, 2013 at 1:40 am

      Mr. Kay,

      You are an intelligent man and you understand logic. I said in plain English that OBJECTIVE morality is impossible without God. I never said that a person cannot live a moral life or that a person cannot recognize morality without God. I simply do not understand why this concept is so foreign to a person like you, since it’s been discussed for more than a century. I would suggest again to read some of the literatures that are available on this topic. For an introduction, read for example the debate between William Lane Craig and Quentin Smith, Theism, Atheism, and Big Bang Cosmology (New York: Oxford University Press, 2003).

      Christians are running and burying their history? Haven’t I said earlier that Christian Zionism in particular(we will discuss it later) has been a disaster? Here it is again: you cannot use the abuse of a system to dismiss the system. I will be the first one to admit that there have been abuses in the name of Christianity. Your point is well taken. But would you, as a serious thinker, disprove Christianity on that basis? If that is the case, then you are making my job too easy. I can disprove atheism on that basis alone.

      Read your previous comments on the previous articles, and you have admitted that Gnosticism was part of Christianity. The Church did not refute the Gnostics? I again pointed out to the scholarly study by Rodney Stark (Cities of God), and you keep asking for more evidence. Read the book and then we’ll talk. I also pointed out some of the Christians who have spent their lives refuting Gnosticism, but all of that is dismissed. I mentioned that Irenaeus attacked Gnosticism, but you dismissed that by perpetuating the statement, “where is the evidence”? A casual reading of historical Christianity would answer that question very well.

      I again could not hold my laughter when you mentioned in the previous response that “exclusivity is a mental disease…” But at the same time you cannot grant me the idea that Christianity attacked Gnosticism! Why are you so exclusive? Why are you allowing only one point of view? I guess G. K. Chesterton was again right. You are denying exclusivity while implicitly and indirectly making exclusive statements. You can’t have it both ways, my friend. Take your pick.

    • nancybisset  July 14, 2013 at 10:45 am

      Mike Kay A great share of information, but a bit harder to comprehend. 🙂

      I personally am open to everything and everybody that comes my way here on the internet. I am beginning to feel the different energies by the way they write. The information they share.

      I am looking up the reference to ‘murder of Hypatia.’ Have no idea what that means. But you spiked my curiosity and Mike that is a very great thing. Before this journey of awareness, I did not give a shiiiiite about anything. I was safe and going to heaven, why need I worry about anything? Hmmmm that sure changed for me.

      Blinders removed because of my willingness to drop all my beliefs, and move on to researching my truth as my life unfolds into what I wanted it to be. You all here are a part of that journey of discovery. I thank you. 🙂

      I got one big point here, Christianity I was taught was the Way the Truth and the Life. When it was really about killing anyone that disagreed with our way of thinking, burning them at the steak and a whole lot more.

      Another search is “The Stockholm syndrome is alive and well with any people who think themselves chosen, saved, redeemed, especially when these people embrace the idea that their suffering carries with it a sense of nobility, extra credit in the eyes of their God. Suffering brings with the justification of inflicting the suffering, and exceptionalism, brings with it justification for the perpetration of all types of crimes.” I have heard about this syndrome for a long time, but could not tell you what it was all about. Now I research because my recall of my god/self memory is slowly returning removing the blocks of Beliefs for over 60 years. Whew a whole lot to disconnect from. A challenge but I will do so with help of wonderful people that share knowledge and not be a part of what we call shills.:-)

      Thanks Mike. You stretched my mind a bit more. :-)))

  10. judgment  July 11, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    Agnostic does not mean Atheist. In its origin it was based on the belief that we can disagree with the Religious ceremonies and requirement they demand to be a believer of the complex and immense meaning of a Spirit and Creator. It is beyond our ability to understand it in its entirety. Faith, religion demand is via interpretation from Men. It is offensive to think such Spirit has an EGO that requires adulation. One might ask “can we address God, ask for help? Actually, since God is a spirit, or intelligent energy, one could mentally send energy signals to the Spirit that animates our world. The simple Tribal belief of many people are closer to God than most religions. We spent too much time with silly ceremonies instead of allowing the development of the power the spirit placed in us. One ancient man Zarathustra, had the best answer to the question “what is God” “God is the flame in your heart” “how do you please God?” “by serving your community”. Unfortunately, religious illuminati came along and saddled Zarathustra with a religious set of man mane complicated rules. I respect the new Pope because he dedicated himself to service not ceremonies.

  11. Preston James, Ph.D  July 11, 2013 at 10:22 pm

    Brilliant philosophical analysis of the intellectual’s considerations about God, whether He exists and if so in what form. Like the old saying, religion is man’s way of trying to reach God and is often considered anything but truth, perhaps more tribal ritual.

    But some philosophers believe God has his own way of directly reaching out to man through prophets and spiritrual experiences. Some Christian philosophers believethat Jesus was God’s connection to man, that is, God reaching down to man and offering ameans to establish a personal relationship.

    Almost everyone that has a soul (actually many don’t) and is not a sociopath or a career political criminal can agree that the Golden Rule makes very good sense and mirrors the Christian belief of loving God first and then loving your neighbor as yourself. Certainly this has formed the basis of western morality (which is being rapidly eroded by the breakdown of the family, lousy schools, TV and the sociopaths running the USG/SSG) and is very functional, and imo forms an ageless truth.

    This article involves some very deep concepts and is very well written. It brings substantial clarity to these issues which seem quite confusing at first glance. I especially appreciate the in depth documentation of some of history’s greatest thinkers. Whether one agrees with Jonas’s views or not he has done a superb job clarifying the main issues.

    • Jonas E. Alexis  July 12, 2013 at 10:41 am

      Thanks for your trenchant remarks and assessment.

    • nancybisset  July 14, 2013 at 10:58 am

      Preston, love how you touched on a very sensitive topic for my sister named JOY. Long story how my sis was adopted out, then months later mother ‘wanted her back and changed her name the adopted family gave her to JOY because of the Joy she brought to our lives.’ Mother would always tell the story of her birth, and that her name to her meant, Jesus first, others 2nd, yourself last. Just a few months ago, I heard my sis tell me for the first time how liv-ed hearing mom tell her this from the beginning. My Sis is an exceptional child with a mind that can reason, logic and the works. I was lacking in alll these skills, that I have to request of my within recall from my memory-god-bank, I call it.:-) If you do not love yourself, how can you love others?

      I used to think everyone had a soul Found out that was an incorrect assumption. 😉 I presume a lot and assume as much. Challenging but exciting hearing your wisdom shared on the VT site. 🙂

      A most wonderful blog Preston, always great reading your shares of knowledge. So much help. Thank you.

  12. Kevin Barrett  July 11, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    Thank you for another terrific article, Jonas

    • Jonas E. Alexis  July 12, 2013 at 10:41 am

      Thanks.

  13. rogelio41  July 11, 2013 at 7:54 pm

    As always I greatly enjoyed reading Mr. Alexis’s article. He is an extremely intelligent, well-informed and articulate writer. It is for that reason that I bother to offer a critique.

    I am a buddhist and was somewhat taken aback at his statement that “Buddha, the figurehead for Hindu beliefs..” etc. Perhaps it was a slip of the fingers. In the first place, “Hindu” is a misnomer for the Brahmanic tradition of that time, and the Buddha, like Jesus, radically departed from the tradition into which he was born. Perhaps Mr. Alexis is not as familiar with the buddhist tradition as he is with the Abrahamic and secular ones.

    As my teacher put it, there are three possible ways of relating with the notion of “God;” the theistic, the atheistic and the non-theistic (akin to but distinct from agnosticism), the latter being the view of the buddhadharma as well as all of the wisdom traditions. Non-theism views the argument between theism and atheism as a red herring, a rather meaningless side show. On the one hand, there is a belief system based on mere assumptions which can neither be proven nor disproven, but can safely be considered irrelevant to the non-believer. Atheism is nothing more nor less than a negation of the belief in God and has no meaning or usefulness outside of that relationship.

    Non-theism, on the other hand, deals directly with our experience. It operates on the same basis as science, but it does so primarily through an experimental investigation of the mind of the observer, rather than what appears to be “out there,” – subject rather than object. When the spiritual path becomes fully integrated with the scientific view, a project that holds a great deal of promise and that many people are currently working on, we are likely to see a breakthrough with extraordinary implications.

    • Jonas E. Alexis  July 12, 2013 at 10:56 am

      Thanks for the remarks. I plan to discuss Buddhism in much more details later this year. Sorry to briefly introduce this subject here.

    • nancybisset  July 14, 2013 at 11:20 am

      Greatly informative with clarity. Thanks rogelio41 Never heard such a simple understanding way of “discussing the 3 possible ways of relating with the notion,’God.’ ” I jotted this information down. I have a very challenging time articulating my shares of knowledge that I am beginning to understand. You share your information as Jonas and many other writers here, with great simplicity that I, a new sheep awakening since Jan.9, 2009 who gets lost and moving in wrong direction many times, because of my social engineered state I am deprogramming from. 🙂 Gullible, assuming, presuming runs rampant in the state I find myself in.:-)

      Thanks for this most wonderful important wisdom shared in short but most eloquent language. I will one day, recall the orator that I know I AM.;-)))

      Love how you used “The notion of ‘God.’ ” Never knew how to talk about God, used creator, designer and such words. They really do not fit when you realize Religion was an invention to control the masses. 🙂 ‘a notion’, just blinged within me.:-)) Thanks so much.

      This information is most needed.

      Is there a way of talking to any of you marvelous people in another place? Really lacking in PC skills. So if there is a way to talk privately to any of you bloggers would be fantastic learning experience. If I learn too many new skills, on the PC I forget my NEEDED Ones I need every day.:-)

  14. Excalibur  July 11, 2013 at 6:20 pm

    ‘Intellectuals’ were not always so flawed and useless in their thinking processes – as they most certainly are today. This has only come about as a symptom of the slow and deliberate subversion of our society and culture. This catastrophic thinking error is only a mirror image of our apparent helplessness in the psychological judaic spiderweb – a web that has been tested over generations to prove results, is highly cynical and ultimately self serving.

    In the same way ‘jewish intellectual rules’ purposely lay out psychological traps for professionals; ‘no-go’ areas of thought for opinion formers – and strict politically correct parameters to hem in any and every modern debate or argument. This inevitably corrals the language and conclusions of any discussion down into an empty cul-de-sac which they control. Philosophers who boldly step outside the mental matrix that we have been rigidly allotted are ruthlessly isolated, stigmatized or even criminalized for doing so – as a warning to others. Thus today there can exist only liars, cheats and establishment toadies within mainstream ‘intelligentsia’. That’s REAL logic for you I’m afraid.

    The ancients had superb thinkers whose brains were as sharp as razors. In those days religion and spirituality was, correctly, not considered to contradict or oppose science in any way. Science and religion should not be in enmity with each other at all – and this ruse is just another divide and conquer tactic. Scientific discovery only allows us to see and understand God’s laws at work on Earth – nothing more.

    After all – we are sentient creatures that exist here with two arms, two legs, fingers and toes. We eat, breathe, sleep, reproduce and die. We can build and plan ahead – and most amazingly of all we can choose between doing what we know to be a good thing or an evil thing – above and beyond blind instinct.

    We hurtle around on a planet in a solar system within a massive and potentially unlimited universe – where such things as light, time, inevitable destruction and the recycling of matter are factors. Those factors, apparently, are natural laws.

    Now come on you logical atheists – what the hell is rational about any of THAT?

  15. wiggins  July 11, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    They all had their Theories and still….and still…..

  16. Chandler  July 11, 2013 at 8:39 am

    Religion is most savage. It kills indiscriminately. It is a hypocrisy. It is a shield to hide behind for self-serving reasons. A true belief would not produce the world we have. I find this entire article interesting but indicting.
    Christianity as is practiced today is theatrical camouflage. It gives license to terrorize. President W. Bush, and most crippled and incomplete human being in my judgment, said he was speaking to god, but he sanctioned torture, and permitted nauseatingly real human misery, torture and slaughter.
    All this sounds intellectual and impressive. But look at the world today! Because the intellectuals, and our interpretation of god, we have created the mess we have.

    • Jonas E. Alexis  July 11, 2013 at 9:50 am

      Hey Chandler,

      Thanks for your critique. We will discuss the dark side of Christian Zionism right after the next two articles. I do not like it anymore than you do, and yes it has caused much suffering in the world as well.

      I will have to say this at the moment. Suppose it is reported that one million police officers have been caught in sexual harassment and the story happens to be true. Which would be the next logical step: fire the police officers or close down the police department altogether? Of course it would be foolish to close down the whole department.

      We should be able to do the same with any religion as well: be it Christianity, Islam or Rabbinic Judaism. You ought to be able to dismiss a system by its tenets, not by its abuse.

    • Chandler  July 11, 2013 at 2:09 pm

      you’re right. I don’t dismiss the system because of its tenets. I just don’t comprehend the why of religion when the world is in the shape it is. Intellectuals or not, they are why poor commoners struggle in our daily lives. They are so out of touch with poor, hungry, broken, downtrodden that they think in circles rather than productively.
      I read Thomas Paine’s The Age of Reason and awakened to the hypocrisy.
      Why take my gun but let police run around with theirs? The reason they carry guns is there are bad people out there with guns. So why would any religious-laden leader want to take my gun so I can’t protect myself? Off the subject I know, but, this hypocritical mentality spills over onto other problems in our society.
      I look forward to Part II and II and so forth. Thanks!

    • Jonas E. Alexis  July 11, 2013 at 4:52 pm

      Hey Chandler,

      Again, “religion” has its fault. Could you entertain the fact that it is “religious” people who are trying to do their best to alleviate suffering in the world? How many atheists hospitals do you know? Did you know that nearly all the major institutions in the United States and Europe were founded by “religious” people for the purpose of educating the masses? Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Oxford, Cambridge, among others, were founded specifically by Christians.

      Some of those universities were overtaken by atheists but they did not start them. For historical studies on these issues, see for example Science and Religion, 400 B.C. to A.D. 1550: From Aristotle to Copernicus (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006); Richard G. Olson, Science and Religion: 1450-1900: From Copernicus to Darwin (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006); David C. Lindberg, The Beginnings of Western Science: The European Scientific Tradition in Philosophical, Religious, and Institutional Context, Prehistory to A.D. 1450 (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2007); Ronald L. Numbers, ed., Galileo Goes to Jail and Other Myths about Science and Religion (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2010); Gary Ferngren, ed., Science and Religion: A Historical Introduction (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2002); John Hedley Brooke, Science and Religion: Some Historical Perspective (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1998); David C. Lindberg and Ronald L. Numbers, God and Nature: Historical Essays on the Encounters between Christianity andScience (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1986); When Science and Christianity Meet (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2003); George M. Marsden, The Soul of the American University: From Protestant Establishment to Established Nonbelief (New York: Oxford University Press, 1994); John R. Thelin, A History of American Higher Education (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2011); even Egypt’s major university, The University of Cairo, was founded by Christians. That should be enough for now.

      I will discuss Thomas Paine’s The Age of Reason at the end of this year.

      Are you seriously saying that “religious-laden” leaders are trying to take away your guns? Just do a casual study on the right to bear arms, and it will probably stun you to discover that it is those “religious-laden” people who are saying that Americans have their right to bear arms. Thanks again.

    • Chandler  July 12, 2013 at 6:27 am

      I look forward to that discussion. No I am not suggesting religious leaders are trying to take my guns. I just finished reading Edwin Blacks “The war against the weak.” A true story of eugenics. Conducted by Christians against the weak, and poor so they can’t reproduce. Religion has created the chaos the world is in. At the beginning of chapter 2 he writes, “Mankind’s quest for perfection has always turned dark. Man has always existed in perpetual chaos. Continuously catapulted from misery to exhilaration and back, humanity has repeatedly struggled to overcome vulnerability ad improve upon its sense of strength. The instinct is to ‘play God’ or at least mediate His providence. Too often,, this impulse is not to just to improve but to repress, and even destroy those deemed inferior.” Fascinating book. Religion sure is something to behold. More later. Enjoy your column and the comments. .

    • Jonas E. Alexis  July 12, 2013 at 3:07 pm

      Hey Chandler,

      It’s very interesting that we are reading that Christians are against the weak. I’ve read Black’s The War Against the Weak a few years ago. I will discuss the eugenic movement in an upcoming article in the series.

  17. DaveE  July 10, 2013 at 11:17 pm

    “I am the way, the truth and the life, no-one will get to God but through me.” The biggest and most profound mistranslation of all time.

    The proper translation and meaning was (and is):

    “I am the way, the truth and the life, NONE OF YOU will get to God but through me.” Christ was talking to a specific group of people, NOT beings everywhere, on any planet, in any dimension, from time immemorial to the infinite future.

    I read this many years ago, from a linguist who studied the oldest translations of John, grammar, the meanings and structure inherent in Greek, Aramaic, Hebrew, Latin. If I could remember who it was, I would tell you, but alas, I can’t.

    It did, however, make me realize that most or all of Christian conceit boils down to ONE WORD.

    • Jonas E. Alexis  July 11, 2013 at 1:15 am

      Hey Dave,

      The Greek translation of this is plain.

  18. Divine Law  July 10, 2013 at 10:45 pm

    Jonas a very interesting article. When one accepts that they are an individual person, then the perspective that develops is unique to one person only. Can we all see the same painting the same way, no. Philosophy also changes with time, as events and technologies change. Theists and atheists are only ideas of ones own conclusions that become a reality through manifesting the thought. Just as Stalin and Moa believed that what they were doing was correct. To think of atrocities to be moral or immoral are dependent upon whether one is conscious or not, as in psychopathic behaviour. If an entire town is addicted to heroin and your the only one not indulging in this practise, then it is you that is odd.

    To actually define a point of view is extremely difficult as opinions as well as thought is unlimited thus enabling the human species to evolve. Religion stifles that growth as it wants to maintain its grip of eternal power and control. When we open ourselves to infinity we are no longer held in bondage, as we tend to vibrate on a higher frequency and closer to the source.

    It is true that what is moral here is immoral there. Our reality now will not be in existence tomorrow. Just as the USA will diversify tomorrow with new people contributing to a new beginning. Even the infants of today will think different tomorrow just because they are influenced by their surroundings.

    The absolute truth will eventually come forward, when we have exhausted all means available to us to explore. But then being unlimited will the absolute truth ever come?

    I love philosophy. Keep up the good work.

    • Jonas E. Alexis  July 11, 2013 at 1:06 am

      Hey Divine Law,

      Thanks for your comment. I respect your perspective. However, I believe it is philosophically planted in midair, most particularly with respect to Zionism. I have been criticizing Zionism for the past few months, and the vast majority of readers agree with me that Zionism is wrong.

      If, however, the premise that “When one accepts that they are an individual person, then the perspective that develops is unique to one person only” is true, then there is no moral ground by which to criticize Zionism and neoconservatism. Those Zionists and neocons have their own perspective, don’t they? Why are we interfering with their own worldview?

      In other words, objective morality ought to exist, otherwise we are in deep trouble.

      Our understanding of philosophy changes with time, but truth does not change. Moreover, the statement that “to think of atrocities to be moral or immoral are dependent upon whether one is conscious or not, as in psychopathic behavior” is again firmly planted in mid-air.

      An entire town can be addicted to heroin, but it does not change the fact that an objective moral truth exists. I have said it plainly that an entire population may not know what that objective moral truth is, but it does not change the fact that it does exist.

      For example, Isaac Newton developed the law of gravity in the seventeenth century, but does that actually mean that gravity did not exist prior to that period? The answer is a resounding no.
      Thanks again for the discussion.

    • Divine Law  July 11, 2013 at 8:48 am

      Jonas, yes objective morality does exist and the truth does not change. Thank you for your reply.

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