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5 years ago  ::  Sep 12, 2009 - 7:47AM #1
Dubay
Posts: 22

Ultimate reality exists in some form, whether natural or supernatural, but we don't know everything about it because we only see a narrow slice of it.  So we use storytelling and poetic language to explore the tension of wondering but not knowing.  God, as a character in our stories, is a personification of this Existence. 


Stated another way, meta-theism sees an anthropomorphic God as a metaphor for ultimate reality, but specific beliefs about this reality are left open to the individual.  Meta-theism is about exploring the questions, not creating dogmas. 


How one expresses meta-theism will vary depending on other beliefs one holds.  A Christian meta-theist may view an anthropomorphic God metaphorically while believing that the divine Logos, which is beyond any human concept, became incarnate in Jesus Christ.  But a skeptic may view God as a poetic device representing impersonal material reality. 


One's specific beliefs do not clash with meta-theism because these beliefs are not held dogmatically, but instead reflect epistemological modesty - the recognition that we see as through a glass darkly. 


Religion is a universal human expression.  My hope is that meta-theism can provide a basic framework where progressive religious and nonreligious people can find a patch of common ground. 

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5 years ago  ::  Sep 12, 2009 - 9:16AM #2
Heretic_for_Christ
Posts: 5,488

I haven't come across the term meta-theism before. I have no problem with it, but then, my beliefs conform to no recognized religion. However, if meta-theism can (as I read your description) embrace virtually any type of belief including non-belief, is it anything more than a one-word crystallization of the statement, "People have many different beliefs about God"? For it does not sound like a statement about God but about beliefs in God.


In any case, I suspect that the fundamentalists will find this concept loathsome--they are people who cannot abide diversity in belief.

I prayed for deliverance from the hard world of facts and logic to the happy land where fantasy and prejudice reign. But God spake unto me, saying, "No, keep telling the truth," and to that end afflicted me with severe Trenchant Mouth. So I'm sorry for making cutting remarks, but it's the will of God.
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5 years ago  ::  Sep 12, 2009 - 10:43AM #3
Dubay
Posts: 22

 "People have many different beliefs about God."


That would be a fair summary.  Meta-theism is not about a specific belief in God, but rather an open way of viewing diverse beliefs.


And it's not likely to be favorably viewed by fundamentalists of any stripe.

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5 years ago  ::  Sep 12, 2009 - 11:52AM #4
Confusedman
Posts: 102

interesting.

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5 years ago  ::  Sep 13, 2009 - 5:49PM #5
williejhonlo
Posts: 3,780

Interesting, meta-theism than accepts an absolute truth but just acknowledges that it is vague.

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5 years ago  ::  Sep 15, 2009 - 11:06PM #6
Neomonist
Posts: 2,705

Like it says on my profile page:


-O- is and the rest is commentary.


(-O- is my spelling of "God")

Standard Disclaimer: This is just my 2cents worth.
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5 years ago  ::  Oct 09, 2009 - 1:54PM #7
williejhonlo
Posts: 3,780

I think the difference between science and religion is that religion describes reality as we are to know it internally, whereas science attemps to explain it in only on a physical basis. Religion accepts that there are some subtle aspects to our existence that goes beyond the mere physical.

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5 years ago  ::  Oct 30, 2009 - 4:15PM #8
Reformationnow
Posts: 290

Deism, which is the belief in the existence of God on the evidence of reason and nature with rejection of superstition, was popular with the founding fathers of the United States of America. George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, Thomas Paine and James Monroe were Deists, and their religious perspective was more close to that of today's Unitarian Universalists than any other.


Many of them were also practitioners of Freemasonry, which is non-sectarian, pluralistic, respectful of all religions, and based on brotherly love, good will, and mutual assistance for the common good.


Your idea of "Meta-Theism" is compatible with Deism and Freemasonry, and when Americans recognize what their country was actually founded upon, America will regain its sanity. A good summay can be read at Little Known American History, by Joseph J. Adamson.

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5 years ago  ::  Oct 30, 2009 - 4:27PM #9
Neomonist
Posts: 2,705

It also fits in quite nicely with a panentheistic point of view.

Standard Disclaimer: This is just my 2cents worth.
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