What is the Agnostic Church?
Well, considering polls
consistently show that roughly ten percent of everyone in the United
States has an atheist or agnostic view of God, the few thousand of us
who actually belong to atheist or agnostic organizations don't speak
for more than a small percentage of our "fellow travelers." While the
organized groups may be broadly characterized as the "Freethought
Movement," those who tend to think along atheist or agnostic lines also
tend to value personal choice, personal freedom, and so forth to such a
degree that the vast majority of them refuse to join anything because
they do not wish to be characterized by some label. This leaves them
without any actual political means to defend their position in our
Against that backdrop, I
see the need to "oppose the despots." I read Spengler; at least enough
to see disturbing parallels in his implications are for our society.1
What we now see as a bunch of kooky "right-wing" fringe organizations
is actually the "leading edge" of the group which will impose
dictatorial rule upon the entire world, or at least enough of it so as
to make little difference to anyone who would wish to escape their
tyranny. (I know it sounds bad, but I believe it to be the ABSOLUTE
TRUTH!) When it gets to the point that the kooks have enough power to
force their insane teachings2
upon our children, it is approaching the point of being "too late" to
do anything substantial to keep them from power. Nonetheless, we must
succeed, or watch all "unbelievers" eventually suffer persecutions as
bad as any in human history.
In my mind, one key is to
use the very weapons that the despots themselves are using in order to
oppose them. A religious organization, as a matter of law in most of
the Western world, has far more "rights" than does any similar sort of
non-profit organization. Thus, in order to wield the maximum force, and
receive the maximum of protection from the law, I must found a "church."
Others in the
atheist/agnostic movement feel uncomfortable with joining something
called a "church." I do not worry about them; they are not my enemies.
What I need right now is only enough of a "hard core" team so that I
can establish a formal organization. The others will join when push
comes to shove, which may not occur for decades yet. However, when push
DOES come to shove, I want my organization (or its successor) to be ready for the battle!
I have VERY STRONG
religious beliefs. They just happen to be of the agnostic persuasion.
Why should I be denied the right to organize others who have similar
religious beliefs? Just why should I not form a church that will stand
up for my religious beliefs? I can't think of one single reason why not!3
And the world-view of my
Agnostic Church will be so much at odds with the prevailing world-view
of Western Civilization that, if Spengler is correct, the Agnostic
Church (or its successor) will eventually exercise its right as a
"major religion" to found its own, unique Civilization.4
That new Civilization should be designed to be more in tune with basic
human nature, and thus it should "break the mold" defined by past
civilizations which then allowed Spengler to so easily predict the
future course of Western Civilization. This should be something truly
unique and worthwhile.
So, I have embarked upon
this crusade; out to tilt at some more windmills. Not for the first
time in my life, I wonder why I bother to "do something." The only
answer I can arrive at is a deep-seated desire to "do the right thing."
If you are still
interested, please read some background material on doctrine that I
wrote in response to some other inquiries (as you shall see). If you
then e-mail me back with an acceptance, I will add your name to my e-mailing list.
1 Writing no later than 1922, Spengler predicted the rise of a "Second Religiousness" in the masses of Western Civilization, and that this "Second Religiousness" would exist in parallel with "an Imperium of gradually-increasing crudity of despotism." If you focus solely upon the United States, you will miss the worldwide picture. So-called "right wing fundamentalism" exists not only in the United States, but also in most nations of the Islamic world. In Iran, this faction has actually gained political control. In the United States, they have only gained effective political control of one major political party, the Republican Party.
2 I am, of course, referring to the debate over whether "creation science" ought to be taught in our schools. "Creation science" is oxymoronic, as nothing about creationism is the least bit scientific.
3 Neither am I alone in my belief that atheists and other freethinkers can belong to a "church." At least two other substantial freethought "churches" exist right now (January 1, 1999).
4 If you draw the line as to what constitutes a "major religion" at around 200 million adherents, then the "major" religions today are Christianity (about 1.9 billion), Muslims (about 1.1 billion), atheists and other "non-religious" (about 1.1 billion), Hindus (about 780 million), Buddhists (about 324 million), Chinese "folk religions" (about 225 million). The major groups excluded by this line would be about 122 million "New Religionists" (including everything from "New Age" cults to Polynesian "cargo" cults) and about 112 million "ethnic religionists" (from many diverse ethnic backgrounds). Neither of these has enough unity to even be lumped together as a "religion." So, almost the entire world's roughly 5.7 billion people (about 5.4 billion of them) are accounted for by these "major" groups. The Christians are most-closely associated with Western Civilization, and the Muslims are most closely associated with Western Civilization's most immediate predecessor, the Arab Civilization. The Hindus are remnants of the ancient Indian Civilization, while both the Buddhists and the Chinese "folk" religions are the remnants of the ancient Chinese Civilization (even though Buddhism arose in India, it was ultimately denied a major role in that country). So, it is now easier to see that the 1.1 billion "unbelievers" in our world can form their own Civilization.
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