Oh, if only it were possible to find understanding,” Joseph exclaimed. “If only there were a dogma to believe in. Everything is contradictory, everything tangential; there are no certainties anywhere. Everything can be interpreted one way and then again interpreted in the opposite sense. The whole of world history can be explained as development and progress and can also be seen as nothing but decadence and meaninglessness. Isn’t there any truth? Is there no real and valid doctrine?”The master had never heard him speak so fervently. He walked on in silence for a little, then said: “There is truth, my boy. But the doctrine you desire, absolute, perfect dogma that alone provides wisdom, does not exist. Nor should you long for a perfect doctrine, my friend. Rather, you should long for the perfection of yourself. The deity is within you, not in ideas and books. Truth is lived, not taught. Be prepared for conflicts, Joseph Knecht - I can see that they already have begun.
If only there were a dogma to believe in. Everything is contradictory, everything is tangential; there are no certainties anywhere. Everything can be interpreted one way and then again interpreted in the opposite sense. The whole of world history can be explained as development and progress and can also be seen as nothing but decadence and meaninglessness. Isn't there any truth? Is there no real and valid doctrine? Joseph Knect said to his Music Master there is truth, my boy. But the doctrine you desire, absolute perfect dogma that alone provides wisdom, does not exist. Nor should you long for a perfect doctrine, my friend rather, you should long for perfection in yourself. The deity is within you, not in ideas and books. Truth is lived not taught
As time goes on, new and remoter aspects of truth are discovered which can seldom be fitted into creeds that are changeless.
Сè противречи едно на друго, сè протрчува едно крај друго, никаде нема сигурност. Сè може да се толкува вака, и сè може да се толкува обратно. Сета човечка историја може да се протолкува како развој и напредок, а истовремено без да се види нешто повеќе од пропаст и глупост. Зар нема вистина? Зар не постои вистинска и валидна наука?
The destiny of your soul is not predicated upon acceptance of a specific dogma that happens to be correct. A loving God does not dole out eternal condemnation because one has selected the wrong doctrine or misinterpreted scripture. On the contrary, your endeavor to understand God and the nature of the universe is a testament to your devotion.
Old religious dogma attempts to convince you that you are on a journey to God, then makes you pay tolls along that roadway.
Some people live in cages with bars built from their own fears and doubts. Some people live in cages with bars built from other people's fears and doubts; their parents, their friends, their brothers and sisters, their families. Some people live in cages with bars built from the choices others made for them, the circumstances other people imposed upon them. And some people break free.
To 'choose' dogma and faith over doubt and experience is to throw out the ripening vintage and to reach greedily for the Kool-Aid.
Too much faith is the worst ally. When you believe in something literally, through your faith you'll turn it into something absurd. One who is a genuine adherent, if you like, of some political outlook, never takes its sophistries seriously, but only its practical aims, which are concealed beneath these sophistries. Political rhetoric and sophistries do not exist, after all, in order that they be believed; rather, they have to serve as a common and agreed upon alibi. Foolish people who take them in earnest sooner or later discover inconsistencies in them, begin to protest, and finish finally and infamously as heretics and apostates. No, too much faith never brings anything good...
While believing strongly, without evidence, is considered a mark of madness or stupidity in any other area of our lives, faith in God still holds immense prestige in our society. Religion is the one area of our discourse where it is considered noble to pretend to be certain about things no human being could possibly be certain about. It is telling that this aura of nobility extends only to those faiths that still have many subscribers. Anyone caught worshipping Poseidon, even at sea, will be thought insane.
Christianity is not a doctrine, I mean, a theory about what has happened and will happen to the human soul, but a description of something that actually takes place in human life. For 'consciousness of sin' is a real event an so are despair and salvation through faith. Those who speak of such things (Bunyan for instance) are simply describing what has happened to them, whatever gloss anyone may want to put on it.
Most reject the more repugnant or indefensible dogmas while still holding onto some core belief. Many believers will proudly describe themselves as reasonable or rational based on how little of their religion they still embrace versus how much they now reject. I think it's funny when people realize that the less you believe the more reasonable you are, but they stop before they reach the logical conclusion.
For Christian writers, religious faith is not a rebellion against reason, but a revolt against the imprisonment of humanity within the cold walls of a rationalist dogmatism.
Death is an opportunity to shed all guilt, to step away from the dogma and contrivances of mankind, and to finally be unbound from all hindrances to knowledge.
[Robert's eulogy at his brother, Ebon C. Ingersoll's grave. Even the great orator Robert Ingersoll was choked up with tears at the memory of his beloved brother]The record of a generous life runs like a vine around the memory of our dead, and every sweet, unselfish act is now a perfumed flower.Dear Friends: I am going to do that which the dead oft promised he would do for me.The loved and loving brother, husband, father, friend, died where manhood's morning almost touches noon, and while the shadows still were falling toward the west.He had not passed on life's highway the stone that marks the highest point; but, being weary for a moment, he lay down by the wayside, and, using his burden for a pillow, fell into that dreamless sleep that kisses down his eyelids still. While yet in love with life and raptured with the world, he passed to silence and pathetic dust.Yet, after all, it may be best, just in the happiest, sunniest hour of all the voyage, while eager winds are kissing every sail, to dash against the unseen rock, and in an instant hear the billows roar above a sunken ship. For whether in mid sea or 'mong the breakers of the farther shore, a wreck at last must mark the end of each and all. And every life, no matter if its every hour is rich with love and every moment jeweled with a joy, will, at its close, become a tragedy as sad and deep and dark as can be woven of the warp and woof of mystery and death.This brave and tender man in every storm of life was oak and rock; but in the sunshine he was vine and flower. He was the friend of all heroic souls. He climbed the heights, and left all superstitions far below, while on his forehead fell the golden dawning, of the grander day.He loved the beautiful, and was with color, form, and music touched to tears. He sided with the weak, the poor, and wronged, and lovingly gave alms. With loyal heart and with the purest hands he faithfully discharged all public trusts.He was a worshipper of liberty, a friend of the oppressed. A thousand times I have heard him quote these words: 'For Justice all place a temple, and all season, summer!' He believed that happiness was the only good, reason the only torch, justice the only worship, humanity the only religion, and love the only priest. He added to the sum of human joy; and were every one to whom he did some loving service to bring a blossom to his grave, he would sleep to-night beneath a wilderness of flowers.Life is a narrow vale between the cold and barren peaks of two eternities. We strive in vain to look beyond the heights. We cry aloud, and the only answer is the echo of our wailing cry. From the voiceless lips of the unreplying dead there comes no word; but in the night of death hope sees a star and listening love can hear the rustle of a wing.He who sleeps here, when dying, mistaking the approach of death for the return of health, whispered with his latest breath, 'I am better now.' Let us believe, in spite of doubts and dogmas, of fears and tears, that these dear words are true of all the countless dead.And now, to you, who have been chosen, from among the many men he loved, to do the last sad office for the dead, we give his sacred dust.Speech cannot contain our love. There was, there is, no gentler, stronger, manlier man.
People are never so completely and enthusiastically evil as when they act out of religious conviction.
Every religion is true one way or another. It is true when understood metaphorically. But when it gets stuck in its own metaphors, interpreting them as facts, then you are in trouble.
Science is opposed to theological dogmas because science is founded on fact. To me, the universe is simply a great machine which never came into being and never will end. The human being is no exception to the natural order. Man, like the universe, is a machine. Nothing enters our minds or determines our actions which is not directly or indirectly a response to stimuli beating upon our sense organs from without. Owing to the similarity of our construction and the sameness of our environment, we respond in like manner to similar stimuli, and from the concordance of our reactions, understanding is born. In the course of ages, mechanisms of infinite complexity are developed, but what we call 'soul' or 'spirit,' is nothing more than the sum of the functionings of the body. When this functioning ceases, the 'soul' or the 'spirit' ceases likewise.I expressed these ideas long before the behaviorists, led by Pavlov in Russia and by Watson in the United States, proclaimed their new psychology. This apparently mechanistic conception is not antagonistic to an ethical conception of life.
Misstraue jedem Politiker, jedem Regierungs- oder Staatschef, der seine Religion zum Instrument macht. Halte Abstand von solchen Politikern, die ihre auf das Jenseits orientierte Religion und ihre diesseitige Politik miteinander vermischen.
[We need reforms] to make the Negro church a place where colored men and women of education and energy can work for the best things regardless of their belief or disbelief in unimportant dogmas and ancient and outworn creeds.
We are all tricked. We think that religion tells us what to believe; but it doesn't, it is telling us what not to believe. Atheism is not the absence of religion; atheism is the most undiluted form of religion: it tells us not to believe in anything at all. Atheists hate the religious and the religious hate atheists, but this is only a deception! We are all deceived! There is only one boat and we are all in it! All at the same time!
One century's saint is the next century's heretic ... and one century's heretic is the next century's saint. It is as well to think long and calmly before affixing either name to any man.
Divinity retains the appearance of insight, when in reality it celebrates ignorance. Its tenets are so much clay, and when the clay sets, it becomes dogma.
Until every soul is freely permitted to investigate every book, and creed, and dogma for itself, the world cannot be free. Mankind will be enslaved until there is mental grandeur enough to allow each man to have his thought and say. This earth will be a paradise when men can, upon all these questions differ, and yet grasp each other's hands as friends. It is amazing to me that a difference of opinion upon subjects that we know nothing with certainty about, should make us hate, persecute, and despise each other. Why a difference of opinion upon predestination, or the trinity, should make people imprison and burn each other seems beyond the comprehension of man; and yet in all countries where Christians have existed, they have destroyed each other to the exact extent of their power. Why should a believer in God hate an atheist? Surely the atheist has not injured God, and surely he is human, capable of joy and pain, and entitled to all the rights of man. Would it not be far better to treat this atheist, at least, as well as he treats us?Christians tell me that they love their enemies, and yet all I ask is—not that they love their enemies, not that they love their friends even, but that they treat those who differ from them, with simple fairness.We do not wish to be forgiven, but we wish Christians to so act that we will not have to forgive them. If all will admit that all have an equal right to think, then the question is forever solved; but as long as organized and powerful churches, pretending to hold the keys of heaven and hell, denounce every person as an outcast and criminal who thinks for himself and denies their authority, the world will be filled with hatred and suffering. To hate man and worship God seems to be the sum of all the creeds.
Belief in the traditional sense, or certitude, or dogma, amounts to the grandiose delusion, My current model -- or grid, or map, or reality-tunnel -- contains the whole universe and will never need to be revised. In terms of the history of science and knowledge in general, this appears absurd and arrogant to me, and I am perpetually astonished that so many people still manage to live with such a medieval attitude.
Every person should embrace those [dogmas] that he, being the best judge of himself, feels will do most to strengthen in him love of justice.
A true education opens the mind and lets us see the world with wonder and joy. It teaches us to accept change with love, and it teaches us to be harmonious with humanity and nature. If any education teaches us to close our minds, to accept dogma, and to violently inhibit questioning then that is not an education. That is a prison for the mind.
True education expands your imagination. False education fills your mind with dogma and makes you a prisoner of conformity.
In my experience, the most staunchly held views are based on ignorance or accepted dogma, not carefully considered accumulations of facts. The more you expose the intricacies and realtities of the situation, the less clear-cut things become.
Dogma gives a charter to mistake, but the very breath of science is a contest with mistake, and must keep the conscience alive.
It is better to pray with a pure heart before the family altar than to perform gaudy ceremonies in a pagoda, clad in the robes of an unworthy bonze.
The duality and the freewill don't exist. There's only one choice to be made, the one that bring us upwards. Self-destruction is not a choice. And yet, every duality presents exactly that, and not really a choice.
Our desires, dreams and hopes, open portals. These portals manifest in our conscience and five senses, in the form of decisions related to the material world but also opportunities. Now, at the exact same time, or maybe even slightly before in time, we get the exact opposite, the temptation, the illusion and deception. And when we are about to make a decision, as if by magic, the two things come stronger to us, as if pushing us into a duality that makes it hard to decide. Now, this brings me to another super interesting fact: Most people assume that they have freewill, and that choices are hard to be made, and that life is full of dualities. And I've learned that this is just a great deception related to our planet, which, as human beings, we must transcend. And what I'm really saying here is that the duality and the freewill don't exist. There's only one choice to be made, the one that bring us upwards. Self-destruction is not a choice. And yet, every duality presents exactly that, and not really a choice.