Battling the Gods: Atheism in the Ancient World
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 10. nóv. 2015 - 304 síđur
How new is atheism? Although adherents and opponents alike today present it as an invention of the European Enlightenment, when the forces of science and secularism broadly challenged those of faith, disbelief in the gods, in fact, originated in a far more remote past. In Battling the Gods, Tim Whitmarsh journeys into the ancient Mediterranean, a world almost unimaginably different from our own, to recover the stories and voices of those who first refused the divinities.
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... ritual. I know that belief in the gods is deeply rooted, and those who profit from it will fight tooth and claw to preserve it. But as true understanding of the world grows and spreads, it will be exposed for the vanity that it is. This ...
... seek to deny it to those they do not favor, destroying historic sites and outlawing traditional practice. Atheist history is not embodied in buildings or rituals in quite the same way, but the principle is identical.
... ritual rather than individual contemplation, the public sphere rather than the private self, outward performance rather than inner belief, conformity to past practice rather than scripture. There is much in this portrait that is true ...
... ritual activity, known as incubation), Asclepius appeared to him in a dream. His fingers were cured, but the god chided him: ˇBecause you disbelieved things that are not unbelievable, your name from now on shall be Disbeliever (Apistos) ...
... rituals in common; we practice the same kind of customs.˘ In lieu of any national unification, Greeks were held together solely by a sense (however fictitious) of common descent, and by shared religion and culture. Formal mechanisms ...
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