Saturday, April 3, 2010

This Is Why I Like SkepChick

At least one of their writers thinks it's possible to be religious AND a skeptic (!!!!!!!∞).

As I never tire of saying (sorry, loyal and Cherish'd Readers), skepticism is the one requirement on the spiritual path, if a person is going to make genuine progress without going insane, dropping by the roadside into a ditch of bitterness (or hubris, if there's a difference), or getting took by some Sally League Jim Jones.

You don't have to believe in anything, you should practice incessantly but you will need breaks now and then, you don't have to subscribe to any single religion or world view, but you need to doubt. Your doubt will sustain you. Your doubt, in the pages of your spiritual journal (OK, there are two requirements) and in your heart, will blossom into some kind of transcendent faith, and even if that faith is in yourself or the laws of physics and you leave all gods behind-- if it is a faith that births the world every day, like the flooding of the Nile or the waxing of the moon, then it is the faith you need.

Even atheists have their Holy Guardian Angels.


  1. Of course atheists have HGAs. You have to define terms. The absolute necessity to question spiritual vision isn't the same as the pseudosceptical blanket denial of the non-physical.

    I'm only here because I noticed you like Patrick Harpur. Is his attitude to the Fortean "sceptical" enough for you? Ok, now what about for Dawkins? That's the difference!

  2. Thanks for reading, Jason. Harpur can be credulous, and I do sometimes cringe while reading him-- too much credence for eyewitness reports, too much willingness to connect dots via supernatural means when natural means will do. But yeah, point taken: "pseudosceptical blanket denial" (great phrase) is both irritating and-- not skeptical.

    I prefer Harpur's openness to Dawkins's smugness, though I like reading both of them and have a lot in common with both of them ideologically. Harpur is on the side of the Imagination (in the Romantic sense), which to me ultimately trumps empiricism. "The Brain-- is wider than the Sky--"

  3. Did you ever happen to read Greer's "Monsters"?

    Might be a happy mean...

  4. I haven't read it but it looks great! Thank you. I really like his New Encyclopedia of the Occult.