The One Perfect Religion

This is a shout-out to my buddy, Noogatiger! (Best Arsenio Hall whoop-whoop!) While we are on the subject, check out D. R. Khashaba’s article over at Butterflies and Wheels:

In Let Us Philosophize (1998) I concluded the chapter on Religion as follows:

The one perfect religion that has ever been given to mankind has been grossly misunderstood, neglected and almost completely forgotten; the religion whose prophet claimed no knowledge, no wisdom, no power, no authority — whose name was Socrates. Socrates may have had the temperament of a mystic. Yet we acclaim him as a philosopher precisely because he went beyond mysticism. He demanded that whatever we hold valuable be fully intelligible. He was deeply religious; he sought the fullness of the inner life. But he was not content with a mystical richness of life, and there lay his glory.

No specific knowledge, no body of doctrine, can secure our salvation: Only a free, ever-creative mind will give us salvation. Not any body of knowledge, but the creative pursuit of understanding, makes us into what we crave to be — whole human beings. That should be the ideal of education.

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16 thoughts on “The One Perfect Religion

  1. has anyone noticed that socrates was probably the ugliest man to ever live?

    or is it just me?

    peter

  2. He is not a pretty man, but he was a smart man, and life is like a box of chocolates.

    He didn’t even write anything. Information about him comes second hand, from many other writers and he was executed on the charge of irreverence towards the Gods.

    MOI, good thing we were not around back then.

  3. I also like what D. R. Khashaba says here:

    We need a culture that fosters moral and spiritual values unlinked to dogma and superstition. This is the task of art, literature, and philosophy. That will be our alternative to religion, but we should take great care not to turn it into a new religion: we need an alternative to religion, not an alternative religion.

    Amen.

  4. Noogatiger,
    Yes, we would NEVER get listened to. The ugly mugs would scare people off. 🙂

    But seriously, what could be better than art, literature, and philosophy?

  5. The Church of Modern Day Art, Literature, and Philosophy.
    Sounds good to me.

    CMDALP

  6. Did I post this already, can’t remember?

    Socrates said:
    Socrates asks a man to define what “piety” (moral duty) really is. “Is the pious loved by the gods because it is pious, or is it pious because it is loved by the gods?” (If right actions are pious only because the gods love them, then moral rightness is entirely arbitrary, depending only on the whims of the gods. If, on the other hand, the gods love right actions only because they are already right, then there must be some non-divine source of values, which we might come to know independently of their love.)

    I also can apply that to sin or evil.
    Did the concept of what is evil and what is sin exist before God even existed? Did God just come along and tell us what was good and what was bad based upon some moral law already in existence before himself? Or, did God simply decide that some of the things he created were good, and some of the things he created he didn’t like so much, and therefore doing that was a sin against him. If it is the later then there is no such thing as a moral absolute, as Christians like to claim. It is only absolute because God decided one day that some of the stuff he created he hated. Can’t get more arbitrary than that.

  7. Noogatiger,
    Hey that’s a good question! If God, as the Christians posit, was before anything existed then God “created good and evil” and also defined sin before humans came along. If this is true, then sin is only sin because God says so, not because the actions themselves are sin. Also if sin were defined by God before people were “created” then what was the definition of sin? Also then why create people capable of committing it? And then we go round and round with the evil, free will thing.

    Good thoughts as ever Nooga! (aside: Brad’s answered one of your posts at my Throw Out Christianity post. He’s callin’ you out my friend! Go get him. I want to watch) 🙂

  8. 🙂 Personally, I think concepts of “Good” “Sin” and “Evil” have all to do with man, and next to nothing to do with God. God is pure energy. Think of electricity. Do we call the current running through a wire “Evil” when it strikes a fire because of a faulty wire?? Do we call electricity “good” because the room lights up when we flip the switch?

    Someday, rather than trying to fit God into Human Image, we’ll all understand that humans are in God’s image (not that there is one ‘image’, but I hope you catch my drift). We are so much MORE than religious doctrines give us credit for.

    We ARE GOD.

    People are compelled to give God humanlife characteristics like “judgement” and “revenge” and “blessings” and “cursings” and all that. Religion – any religion – in man’s attempt to identify with something so vastly different than herself as to try to bring God down to our size.

    GOD IS NOT A PERSON SO GET OVER YOURSELF! LOL (that’s a new t-shirt I’m having printed up that I want to wear when I’m ranting against The Machine…)

  9. Please allow me to rephrase:
    Fools learned from fools and went everywhere to teach.
    We have been collecting ideas from everywhere and insinuates that all of it are one and just the same. Because we uses each ideas in reference to what we want to prove.
    Let me just inform you that when you want to learn about the Bible, and even God, you need to drop first all the things you learned about it, everything that was taught to you. Forget what everybody said about it.
    Now, that is the beginning of wisdom. Before you can build a structure, you need to start from the base or the foundation to make sure that it will stand the test of time. You cannot just build a pyramid using sticks or just plain wood.
    For sure, you will ask, who’s going to teach me about the bible? Who shall introduce me to the God of the Bible?

  10. Just follow Bro Eli Soriano, Moi. He will have all your answers. Not Bro Eli’s God though. Not Bro Eli’s God’s perfect word either. Just Bro Eli. Follow him Moi. *sigh* Don’t worry about it, because Bro Eli is your direct link to God. You don’t need God, you just need Bro Eli’s word because well “he knows.” I’m sure he’s so anointed that there could be no further anointing better, well accept for Christ himself. *sigh*

    Pardon me Moi. Don’t even post this comment if you prefer not to. I understand. I know how tired we get of hearing people come in and say, “Here is the way.” Or, “This guy/gal’s got the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help “their” God. *sigh*

    Maybe if I keep up this sighing we could call this “The Comment of Seven Sigh’s.”

    I remember a pastor who said to me, “You aren’t enightened yet. Saved yes, enlightened no. It will come. Just follow us because we know the truth. We are in the one true church. We follow the one true God and following us is following God. Just because you are saved doesn’t mean you are enlightened. Now that you are here, give it some time. With time, you will know.” Sound like a cult leader to you?

    Countless pastors, brothers, guru’s…yes, the all know “the” way. And they all have their followers to help point you to “the” way. *sigh*

    Never mind that their are countless “ways” out there all claiming their “way” is “the” way. Countless Christian ways. Out of them all dear Moi, choose Bro Eli. He is the way. *sigh*

  11. Agnostic,
    I really think el has serious problems so I’m not going to bother answering him/her.
    Everyone claims to have the “true” way and you’re right, they are cult leaders! These people make me tired. Brother!

  12. Well, I think what I wrote before ends like this: “For sure, they will ask: Who’s going to teach me about the bible? Who shall introduce me to the God of the Bible?”

  13. el,
    You are being repetitive and I’ve censored your remarks. We ALL get it that you think you have all the answers or that you think this cult leader you talk about does. I will not post your links again.

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