Philosophy of Religion

Audi Israhel Dominus Deus noster Dominus unus est.
Hear, O Israel, the
LORD our God, the LORD is One.
Deuteronomy 6:4

Xenophanes... looking to the whole heaven, says that the One is God.

Aristotle, Metaphysics, I, v.12, 986b21 (see "the god")

Just as the boatman sits in his small boat, trusting his frail craft in a stormy sea that is boundless in every direction, rising and falling with the howling, mountainous waves, so in the midst of a world full of suffering and misery the individual man calmly sits, supported by and trusting the principium individuationis, or the way in which the individual knows things as phenomena.

Arthur Schopenhauer, The World as Will and Representation, Volume I, §63, p. 353 [Dover Publications, 1966, E.F.J. Payne translation]

Prospero  The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces,
     The solemn temples, the great globe itself,
     Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve
     And like this insubstantial pageant faded
     Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff
     As dreams are made on, and our little life
     Is rounded with a sleep.

The Tempest, William Shakespeare, Act 4, Scene 1:152-158

qui respondens dixit scriptum est non in pane solo vivet homo
sed in omni verbo quod procedit de ore Dei.
But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone,
but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

Matthew 4:4 'aqrabu 'ilayhi min h.abli-l-warîdi.
We are nearer to him than the jugular vein.

'al-Qur'ân, Sûrah 50, Verse 16

Men of Athens, I am grateful and I am your friend,
but I will obey the god rather than you.

Socrates, Plato's Apology of Socrates, 29d


Editorial Essays

SAMUEL L. JACKSON: "This was divine intervention. You know what divine intervention is?"

JOHN TRAVOLTA: "I think so. That means that God came down from Heaven and stopped the bullets."

SAMUEL L. JACKSON: "That's right. That's exactly what it means. God came down from Heaven and stopped these motherfuckin' bullets."

Pulp Fiction, 1994, Miramax Films

locutus est Moses ad populum peccastis peccatum maximum.
Moses said unto the people, Ye have sinned a great sin.

Exodus 32:30

per fidem enim ambulamus et non per speciem.
For we walk by faith, not by sight.

2 Corinthians 5:7

ecce facta sunt nova [omnia].
Behold, all things have become new.

2 Corinthians 5:17

Le mot religion ne signifiait pas ce qu'il signifie pour nous; sous ce mot, nous entendons un corps de dogmes, une doctrine sur Dieu, un symbole de foi sur les mystères qui sont en nous et autour de nous; ce même mot, chez les anciens, signifiait rites, cérémonies, actes de culte extérieur. La doctrine était peu de chose; c'étaient les pratique qui étaient l'important; c'étaient elles qui étaient obligatoires et impérieuses. La religion était un lien matériel, une chaîne qui tenait l'homme esclave.

The word religion did not signify what it signifies for us; by this word we understand a body of dogmas, a doctrine concerning God, a symbol of faith concerning what is in and around us. This same word, among the ancients, signified rites, ceremonies, acts of exterior worship. The doctrine was of small account: the practices were the important part; these were obligatory, and bound man (ligare, religio). Religion was a material bond, a chain which held man a slave.

Numa Denis Fustel de Coulanges, La cité antique, 1865, Préface par François Hartog, Introduction par Bruno Karsenti, Champs Classiques, Flammarion, Paris, 1984, 2009, p.237; The Ancient City, A Study of the Religion, Laws, and Institutions of Greece and Rome, translated by Willard Small, 1874, Doubleday & Company, 1955, Dover Publications, 2006, p.167

Tell the king; the fair wrought house has fallen.
No shelter has Apollo, nor sacred laurel leaves;
The fountains are now silent; the voice is stilled.
It is finished.

Tell the king the fair wrought hall is fallen to the ground.
No longer has Phoebus a hut, nor a prophetic laurel,
nor a spring that speaks. The water of speech is quenched.

The Oracle at Delphi in answer to the Emperor Julian in 362 AD, or also cited as a statement to the Emperor Theodosius I, 393 AD, or to Julian by the Oracle at Daphne. The first translation is by Peter Hoyle, Delphi [Cassell and Company, London, 1967, p.142], who cites no source. The second translation is given by Michael Scott, Delphi, A History of the Center of the Ancient World [Princeton University Press, 2014, p.243, note].

Waman yud.lili llâhu famâ lahu min hâdin.
And whom God leads astray, there is for him no right guide.

'al-Qur'ân, Sûrah 39, Verse 23

Where death is, religion must be.

Uchimura Kanzô (1861-1930), "St. Nichiren, a Buddhist Priest" [1933]

To you I'm an atheist. To God I'm the Loyal Opposition.

Woody Allen, Stardust Memories [1980]


That sunny dome! those caves of ice!
And all who heard should see them there,
And all should cry, Beware! Beware!
His flashing eyes, his floating hair!
Weave a circle round him thrice,
And close your eyes with holy dread,
For he on honey-dew hath fed,
And drunk the milk of Paradise.

Samuel Taylor Coleridge, "Kubla Khan; or, A Vision in a Dream: A Fragment"

"Moe, a wise man once said, 'Religion's a good thing for good people and a bad thing for bad people.'"

Jonathan Kellerman, True Detectives [Ballantine Books, 2009, p.237]



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Philosophy of Religion, Note

The source cited by Scott is H.W. Parke and D.E.W. Wormell, The Delphic Oracle, Volume II, The Oracular Responses [Basil Blackwell, Oxford, 1956, #476, p.194]. The Greek text is given by Parke and Wormell, with no translation, and in turn is attributed to Philostorgius, "from book 7 of the [Church] History (Berlin ed. p.77, 1.18)," with the passage repeated by Cedrenus (ed. Bekker), where Bekker evidently attests the dative singular of instead of the non-standard (or dialect) in Philostorgius. The original text of Philostorgius is lost but has been "reconstructed" from an epitome by Photius and some other fragments. If this means that the Greek text of the oracle is from Photius, it is an extraordinary tribute to the Patriarch; but I can't tell from the discussions I have seen so far. Some attention to the Bibliotheca will be necessary -- but now I see that Delphi is not mentioned there under the treatment of Philostorgius. Otherwise, we seem to see Doricisms ( for Attic , "spring, fount, stream") in the text, which may reflect the Northwestern dialect of Delphi.

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