Panendeism.org

For the Promotion of Reason Based Spirituality...
 
HomeGalleryFAQSearchRegisterMemberlistUsergroupsLog in

Share | 
 

 PAUL CARUS

View previous topic View next topic Go down 
AuthorMessage
Aaron
Admin
avatar

Number of posts : 1918
Age : 46
Location: : Connecticut
Registration date : 2007-01-24

PostSubject: PAUL CARUS   Fri Apr 25, 2008 4:06 pm

I've just read the first few pages of 'GOD, AN ENQUIRY INTO THE NATURE OF MAN’S HIGHEST IDEAL AND A SOLUTION OF THE PROBLEM FROM THE STANDPOINT OF SCIENCE' and have to say I really like it!

And it's very accessible too considering it was written 100 years ago.

Here's a link to the book...
http://www.cimmay.us/pdf/carus.pdf

And here's an excerpt...
Quote :
PART I.
A NEW CONCEPTION OF GOD.
THE PROBLEM.

The conception of God is the most important idea of philosophy, science, and religion, and our attitude toward it is of vital importance for our emotional, intellectual, and moral life. It is a thought which, more than any other, covers the unity of existence in its entirety, and its formulation touches upon a great number of other problems. Indeed, it is likely to present itself at any moment in one form or another. Thus it is a matter of course that the conception of God has been approached in various ways and can be treated in the most diverse manners.

We may with mystics abandon any attempt at comprehending the problem and indulge in purely intuitional contemplations, which naturally will assume the form of visions and ecstasies. We may with moralists point out the close relation between God and duty and preach the sermon of the categorical imperative; or we may with the scientist seek the ultimate raison d’être of existence and trace the eternal, the everlasting, the permanent, in the transiency of natural phenomena. We might combine the three methods and start from the needs of these three aspects of human nature, the head, the heart, and the hand, and proceed on these three avenues of our life to their center, in the hope of harmonizing the results of our methods and reconciling apparent contradictions.

Yet we may take still another road which is very promising. The God-idea is of historical growth; in the form in which it exists in the minds of the present generation it is the product of a long evolution; it represents aspirations definite in kind and tending in a definite direction. These aspirations are by no means all consistent; to a great extent they are conflicting and even directly contradictory. Many of them are conservative and reactionary; others progressive and radical. A great part of them partake of the nature of instincts. They are, in their ultimate constructions, submerged in the realm of subconscious and unconscious soul-life. In other words, they are based upon arguments which do not all appear on the surface of conscious life but are partly buried in the traditions of the past, and have originated under the influence of the experiences of our ancestors from time immemorial, still embodying the notions of primeval man, which, however, have been added to and have also been corrected by considerations of a more matured period.

All these methods are constructive. They are methods of handling the material that is given and, however critical we may be in details, assume (or, at least, may assume) the legitimacy of the God-idea itself as a matter of course. But we might attack the subject in quite another fashion, a fashion which at first sight appears to invalidate the whole issue, but which may, after all, prove most fruitful by assuming an attitude of doubt and subjecting the God-idea to a critical analysis...

_________________
"Enjoy every sandwich" ~ Warren Zevon
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://panendeism.web.officelive.com/default.aspx
Gnomon
Moderator


Number of posts : 660
Location: : Birmingham, Alabama
Registration date : 2007-09-30

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Sun Apr 27, 2008 7:15 pm

I like it too. I am in the process of reading the PDF document, and so far, it fits with my holistic/deistic/scientific worldview.

However, since I called myself an Agnostic for 30 years, I had to wince at his harsh characterization of agnosticism:

<< Agnosticism, which may briefly be characterized as a bankruptcy of thought, is not only the weakest but also the most injurious philosophy.
It is the philosophy of indolence
The agnostic argument consists in glittering phrases such as “the finite cannot comprehend the infinite,” >>
[i]

Ouch! Embarassed
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.enformationism.info/
Aaron
Admin
avatar

Number of posts : 1918
Age : 46
Location: : Connecticut
Registration date : 2007-01-24

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Sun Apr 27, 2008 7:56 pm

Yeah tough one... especially since I still consider myself somewhat of an agnostic.

_________________
"Enjoy every sandwich" ~ Warren Zevon
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://panendeism.web.officelive.com/default.aspx
Aaron
Admin
avatar

Number of posts : 1918
Age : 46
Location: : Connecticut
Registration date : 2007-01-24

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Sun Apr 27, 2008 8:20 pm

Here's another quote that I really like.

Quote :
This God-conception is not the old pantheism which identifies God and the All. God is not the sum-total of all things; He is in all things, but He is also beyond and above all things. God is the Allhood of existence. He is the norm of actual existence and the condition of any possible existence. He is in nature and yet different from nature. He is in reality but different from all real things. He is the supernatural in nature and the superreal in real things. He is the formative factor of things material, himself unmaterial.

_________________
"Enjoy every sandwich" ~ Warren Zevon
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://panendeism.web.officelive.com/default.aspx
Gnomon
Moderator


Number of posts : 660
Location: : Birmingham, Alabama
Registration date : 2007-09-30

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Tue Apr 29, 2008 9:42 pm

Quote :
The agnostic argues that there is no truth, and thus everyone’s religious conviction becomes a matter of purely subjective attitude.

I'm still reading the PDF book, and I just came across the quote above. That definition may explain why he is so hard on Agnostics. As a self-labeled non-knower, I never argued that absolute Truth did not exist. I just admitted that I didn't know what it is. As PainefulTruth likes to say, "God is Truth".

Theists, Atheists, and Agnostics are all searching for some portion of truth. However, only those with a god-concept can use Absolute Truth as a gauge for their own aspirations. But, like Infinity and Eternity, I still don't know what AT is.
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.enformationism.info/
Aaron
Admin
avatar

Number of posts : 1918
Age : 46
Location: : Connecticut
Registration date : 2007-01-24

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Wed Apr 30, 2008 8:58 am

Yes, sounds more like Nihilism than Agnosticism. I guess Agnosticism was still a relatively new idea 100 years ago since the term wasn't coined until 1869.

_________________
"Enjoy every sandwich" ~ Warren Zevon
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://panendeism.web.officelive.com/default.aspx
Gnomon
Moderator


Number of posts : 660
Location: : Birmingham, Alabama
Registration date : 2007-09-30

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Wed Apr 30, 2008 8:04 pm

Quote :
We might call the new theology “theosophy,” had not that beautiful name been
monopolized by the theosophists whose most prominent representatives seem to be bent on
continuing the errors and vagaries of the old theology without actually attaining the higher
ground of the truly scientific spirit;

When I was in college I investigated Theosophy, among others, in my quest to find a religious philosophy that was also compatible with science. The basic concepts of Theosophy sounded good, but in practice, it turned-out to be another form of superstitious Spiritualism.

I also checked-out Scientology for the same reason. But again a reasonable-sounding concept was ruined in reality. After that, I pretty much gave up on a science/religion detente, until I recently happened upon Neo-Deism. I hope it doesn't turn-out to be another disappointment. At least it doesn't seem to have an authoritarian cult-leader.
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.enformationism.info/
Aaron
Admin
avatar

Number of posts : 1918
Age : 46
Location: : Connecticut
Registration date : 2007-01-24

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Thu May 01, 2008 9:05 am

Yes, the good thing about Deism is that it's not a religion like Theosophy or Scientology are. There aren't any rules to follow other than the one's you create for yourself.

_________________
"Enjoy every sandwich" ~ Warren Zevon
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://panendeism.web.officelive.com/default.aspx
Gnomon
Moderator


Number of posts : 660
Location: : Birmingham, Alabama
Registration date : 2007-09-30

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Thu May 01, 2008 12:56 pm

Aaron wrote:
Yes, the good thing about Deism is that it's not a religion like Theosophy or Scientology are. There aren't any rules to follow other than the one's you create for yourself.

Yes, but that's why I still cringe when someone suggests starting a Deism Religion. When you go from abstract philosophy to concrete religion, the best of intentions can become corrupted by the human herd instinct.

A major concern on the Freethought Fellowship Forum is Authoritarianism. The unity of a social group usually requires each member to surrender some of his freedom to some kind of central authority. Unfortunately---or fortunately depending on how you look at it---the hands-off deity of Deism doesn't lend itself to a rigid hierarchy. Yet most people seem to naturally prefer a clear line of authority in order to avoid the anarchy of individualism.

One FFF member is seriously working on philosophical and practical ways to develop a non-hierarchical "community" based on principles similar to Holism and Cybernetics. In that case Religion, referred to as "Proligion", is simply one aspect of the whole community, rather than the de-facto ruler. And Deism would be one option among many as the basis for religious "praxis". Over time though, the non-hierarchical, holistic, Deist worldview may naturally emerge as the dominant species of religious philosophy, without the need for rigid rules or edge-of-sword conversion.

Wiki:

Praxis (process), the process of putting theoretical knowledge into practice
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.enformationism.info/
Aaron
Admin
avatar

Number of posts : 1918
Age : 46
Location: : Connecticut
Registration date : 2007-01-24

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Thu May 01, 2008 2:01 pm

Yeah that's what the "Integral Life Practice" is supposed to be about.

_________________
"Enjoy every sandwich" ~ Warren Zevon
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://panendeism.web.officelive.com/default.aspx
Gnomon
Moderator


Number of posts : 660
Location: : Birmingham, Alabama
Registration date : 2007-09-30

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Thu May 01, 2008 10:29 pm

Quote :
In a word, being a particular being, he would not possess the marks of Godhood, intrinsic necessity, intrinsic eternality, intrinsic universality, intrinsic omnipresence.


anthropotheism, i. e., of that view of God which looks upon God as an ego consciousness, having definite feelings, endowed with knowledge, thinking successive thoughts as we do, and finally arriving at a decision to be carried into effect.

That the God of Deism is Being itself, not a particular being, is perhaps one of the hardest concepts to get across to materialistic thinkers, including many Theists.
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.enformationism.info/
Gnomon
Moderator


Number of posts : 660
Location: : Birmingham, Alabama
Registration date : 2007-09-30

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Thu May 01, 2008 10:49 pm

Quote :

On some other occasion I expressed my approval of the agnosticism of modesty, which is a suspension of judgment so long as there are not adequate grounds to be had for forming an opinion. But the agnosticism of modestly is a personal attitude, not a doctrine. As soon as it is changed into a doctrine it becomes the agnosticism of arrogance.

Now that I see his point, I must agree with Carus' “vehemently assailing the agnostic position,”
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.enformationism.info/
Aaron
Admin
avatar

Number of posts : 1918
Age : 46
Location: : Connecticut
Registration date : 2007-01-24

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Fri May 02, 2008 8:59 am

Gnomon wrote:
Quote :

On some other occasion I expressed my approval of the agnosticism of modesty, which is a suspension of judgment so long as there are not adequate grounds to be had for forming an opinion. But the agnosticism of modestly is a personal attitude, not a doctrine. As soon as it is changed into a doctrine it becomes the agnosticism of arrogance.

Now that I see his point, I must agree with Carus' “vehemently assailing the agnostic position,”

Yes, I can sort of see that point too.

_________________
"Enjoy every sandwich" ~ Warren Zevon
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://panendeism.web.officelive.com/default.aspx
Gnomon
Moderator


Number of posts : 660
Location: : Birmingham, Alabama
Registration date : 2007-09-30

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Sun May 04, 2008 8:22 pm

Quote :
Question 4. “Do you regard this view of God as compatible with the Christian conception of God?”
It is not only compatible with the Christian conception, it is the Christian conception
itself, in its matured and purified form. Any one who holds the traditional conception of God
will be confronted with problems as to the nature of God as soon as his mind becomes
scientifically trained. In the face of the truth that the world order is not made but is
intrinsically necessary and eternal, he can no longer look upon God as an individual being
who makes worlds as the watchmaker makes watches.

Carus speaks very confidently of his God concept, as if it is simply a logical progression and evolution of the bible-god conception. To which I personally can agree. But I daresay that the majority of Christians would not recognize Jehovah or Jesus in this description.

I'm guessing that Carus' god hypothesis is derived in part from some extra-biblical sources. I see some kinship to Kabbalah and Gnostic and FreeMason doctrine, along with some Eastern concepts. Are you aware of any historical influences on Carus? Or did the "God of Science" just spring directly from his Jovian brain?

My own God hypothesis is an amalgam of various religious and philosophical concepts drawn from my erratic, informal search for truth. But I am not aware of any single dominant influence. I only applied the name "Deism" to my patchwork hypothesis after-the-fact, as the closest historical approximation to my own understanding.
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.enformationism.info/
Aaron
Admin
avatar

Number of posts : 1918
Age : 46
Location: : Connecticut
Registration date : 2007-01-24

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Mon May 05, 2008 9:41 am

From what I've read Carus dabbled in Philosophy, Theology, Mathematics and was heavily influenced by both Taoism and (especially in his later years) Buddhism and was apparently a sponsor for one of the earliest western translations of Buddhist work. He was a friend and publisher to the pragmatist Charles Peirce and was heavily involved in the promotion of interfaith dialogue through his "Open Court Publishing Company".

There's a brief but fairly good article about Carus on wikipedia...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Carus

Here's a link to some more of his work.
http://onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu/webbin/book/lookupname?key=Carus%2C+Paul%2C+1852-1919

_________________
"Enjoy every sandwich" ~ Warren Zevon
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://panendeism.web.officelive.com/default.aspx
Gnomon
Moderator


Number of posts : 660
Location: : Birmingham, Alabama
Registration date : 2007-09-30

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Wed May 07, 2008 10:42 pm

Quote :
Deism is the view adopted by the Freethinkers of the eighteenth century, who rejected miracles but held that God is a personal and supernatural being, the Creator and legislator of the universe.

The God-conception which I deem true might be called nomotheism or cosmotheism, or also monotheism, according to definition; but I object to deism, pantheism, and atheism.

Apparently, Carus views Deism as an outdated worldview. Do you think he would accept "Panendeism" as a worthy successor to Nomotheism or Cosmotheism, as defined on page 94 of God, an Enquiry?
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.enformationism.info/
Aaron
Admin
avatar

Number of posts : 1918
Age : 46
Location: : Connecticut
Registration date : 2007-01-24

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Thu May 08, 2008 9:11 am

Yes, I think he was what we call a Panendeist. And I have many of the same problems as him regarding "classical" Deism. Ultimately, I think Deism is much broader than the beliefs held by those who called themselves deists back in the 18th century however.

_________________
"Enjoy every sandwich" ~ Warren Zevon
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://panendeism.web.officelive.com/default.aspx
Minusone

avatar

Number of posts : 4
Location: : Illinois
Registration date : 2008-05-19

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Tue May 20, 2008 8:48 pm

Gnomon:
"I'm guessing that Carus' god hypothesis is derived in part from some extra-biblical sources."

Paul Carus lived not far from where i live. i taught yoga in one of the carus family homes, the place where he and Dr Suzuki worked together on translations.

You guessed correctly, he was heavily influenced by Eastern thought, especialy buddhism, tho if the large Hindu statue prominantly displayed in that house could be called a clue he was interested in Hinduism too.
In 1894 the first edition of The Gospel of Buddha was published written by Paul Carus, reportedly compiled from ancient records.

i can't recall the work he was involved in with Dr Suzuki, i only know to this day there are still Japanese visitors who make a pilgramage to the place the Carus family provided for his stay.

The family mansion is being restored by a local historical group and in that process a treasure trove of papers was discovered. It seems the family kept every paper that touched thier hands, the mass was so huge it was said it would take years to go thru and was at last report in the hands of historians in Springfield the state capital.

Who knows what goodies will come to light that may be of intrest to people in this and other parts of the world.
Back to top Go down
View user profile
Gnomon
Moderator


Number of posts : 660
Location: : Birmingham, Alabama
Registration date : 2007-09-30

PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   Wed May 21, 2008 10:39 pm

Minusone wrote:

i can't recall the work he was involved in with Dr Suzuki, i only know to this day there are still Japanese visitors who make a pilgramage to the place the Carus family provided for his stay.
.

I had heard of Dr. Suzuki as the man who introduced Americans to Buddhism. But I had never heard of Carus, until Aaron posted this thread.

I suppose you could call Carus a religious syncretist. He tried to distill the cacophony of world religions and sciences down to a harmonious essence.

The Wiki article indicates that Suzuki was a bit of a syncretist too. He married a Theosophist. But for me Theosophy turned out to be a blind alley.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daisetz_Teitaro_Suzuki
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.enformationism.info/
Sponsored content




PostSubject: Re: PAUL CARUS   

Back to top Go down
 
PAUL CARUS
View previous topic View next topic Back to top 
Page 1 of 1
 Similar topics
-
» Paul Searle
» RELISHING RELICS: WILL JOHN PAUL GO TO PIECES?
» CAPSULE CONTAINING POPE JOHN PAUL II'S BLOOD HEADING TO MEXICO
» ONE MORE MIRACLE NEEDED FOR JOHN PAUL II'S SAINTHOOD
» Has anyone used Dr Paul Bennett on the Gold Coast

Permissions in this forum:You cannot reply to topics in this forum
Panendeism.org :: General Discussions :: Deism-
Jump to: