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June 2nd, 2012 - 08:50 AM
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I often have contentious discussions with other people. Particularly heated with atheists. I'm one of those who think, along with Voltaire, that if God did not exist it would be necessary to invent him. I admire the strength of those who have faith. I haven't. I lost it a good while back. I'd like to be like Voltaire who, Wikipedia says, said ""What is faith? Is it to believe that which is evident? No. It is perfectly evident to my mind that there exists a necessary, eternal, supreme, and intelligent being. This is no matter of faith, but of reason." Nietzsche, while pretty crazy in some ways, is understood to have said in "Die Fröhliche Wissenschaft", that having killed God we don't know the damage we have done because we haven't got the capacity to take his place, or something along those lines. Wikipedia quotes thus : "God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall we comfort ourselves, the murderers of all murderers? What was holiest and mightiest of all that the world has yet owned has bled to death under our knives: who will wipe this blood off us? What water is there for us to clean ourselves? What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we have to invent? Is not the greatness of this deed too great for us? Must we ourselves not become gods simply to appear worthy of it?
—Nietzsche, The Gay Science, Section 125, tr. Walter Kaufmann
Yes, I mourn it too. We could never be gods, let alone God. We are but demi-gods, or 'top predators' in scientific language. This gives us the power to shed the blood of other beings of lesser power than ourselves, whether man or animal, out of cruelty, indifference, anger or lust for power. All the blood that is spilt, all the suffering, all the potential for life and living lost or destroyed....the daily ruin....without God there is no resolution of it all. So many modern secularists simply fail to understand this loss. They complain that concern with God is a weak surrender to a higher authority for which a healthy modern spirit should have no need. It strikes me as stupefying that these people - as Nietzschke himself would have observed- fail to see how inadequate we are to fill the hole left by the elimination of the Great Resolver. Look at History. Look around.
How better than to quote Shelley's 1818 poem on the folly of human hubris :
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away."