History, Evolution, and The Darwin Debate

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The ‘nones’

October 15th, 2016 · No Comments


The rise of the ‘nones’ is a dramatic and interesting development. In terms of the study of religion/reformation in the eonic model, this development seems long delayed. Or in fact, a resurgence after the dramatic shift to secular humanism by the left in the nineteenth century, followed by a resurgence of religion, etc…
But the reality remains that while it is easy to criticize religion, the outcome as ‘no religion’ can be something worse, and the New Atheist movement is one such example of a confused outcome. The problem is that post-religion is created with atheism, and the assumptions of scientism are used to negate the spiritual. But that won’t work. The ‘spiritual’ is never the same as the ‘religious’. If we abandon religion, we are left in the woods of the spiritual. There is probably no way to avoid this. Every epoch starts over and the problem is what crackpot social ideology will come next. It is not enough to promote something like the New Atheism: it is as crackpot as the rest, and, worse, it is pervaded by the deception of the darwinian theory of evolution which is useful to ‘prove’ that a purely mechanical natural selection generates all evolution. That’s crackpot, a real superstition, or substition, if you prefer.

The nones will find their own way, without the New Atheists. They may well become increasingly atheistic, don’t get me wrong, but the question of god is very complicated. Simple negation begs the question of what is being negated. I think that the New Atheists are indulging in a turkey shoot on the confused and muddled forms of theism created by the major monotheistic religions. Still, the ‘god’ idea is suffering metal fatiure and may be beyond rescue, in terms of the ‘words’. The deeper reality, who knows. I have criticized the New Atheists, but I can’t prevent the potshots from such groups turning into bull’s eye’s at the expense of pop theism, always the curse of Christianity, and, indeed, Islam. But Islam, despite its crudities, has a larger depth, and I often wonder why moslem intellectuals can’t use elements of the sufi tradition to create a true Roll’s Royce ‘postreligion’ that is secular to the core. Islam is cursed by a hoard of moronic mullahs enforcing orthodoxy and the result is that its crown jewels have been secreted away into other traditions. Moslems should wake up and take note. The ‘nones’ are not yet dominant, but they are coming (note the Moslem prayer, There is No God, But God, a proto-atheism if ever there was one): Islam can ride with the notion that ‘god’ in most senses is an idolatry.
Moslems can thus uphold a legacy but must at the same time, post haste, pass through a really rugged Reformation. Throw out the junk, and soon: some of the junk

pilgrimmage to mecca, the idiocy of the Kaaba Stone
prayer five times a day
hijab idiocy and its male dominant aspect, etc…
what else: the list gets longer…
the sharia law, more or less…
Jihad was about peace, yes, but let’s fact the reality: Islam was a violent war of conquest, etc…

More generally the aborted modernity visible in such places as the Saudi realm, still medieval, but able to import lock and stock and barrel modernities with cash, on the barrel: we in the Moslem world the failure to produce open societies, the consistent pattern of grotesque non-democracy, and now even Turkey is being dragged backward. Fake modernity purchased with oil money is grotesque and the Saudi realm is what you get if the revolution to modernity aborts. Egypt, Iran, Dubai, etc, are all monstrosities. And Islam is part of the problem.

But Islam is a complicated entity: it has a way to induce states of consciousness that are absent from the deadpan Christianity. Behind that lies the sub-religion of sufism, and something we have pointed to several times here: a mysterious ‘soul’ technology, or techne’, that is almost as obscure to most sufis as it is to everyone else. It would be good to put all that into the public domain, and move Islam into a severely austere form of modernity. Don’t linger in the idiotic realm of the mullahs. Goodbye to all that.

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