Previous posts in this discussion:
PostWhy Religion? Thoughts from John Lennon (Anthony J Candil, USA, 05/11/19 6:05 am)
To me, when reaching this point, is why a religion? Did God invent us? Or did we invent God?
After all, humans need to believe there is an aftermath, or else. Probably without a reason to believe, the world would be very different and societies could go into rampage as there won't be any barriers to stop them. Is that the reason why we invented God?
Nevertheless, religion has been with us forever and indeed it has been the reason of many killings and war. Is there much difference between what ISIS has been doing these days and what the Spanish Inquisition did back in the Middle Ages?
I am reminded of some of the poetry John Lennon wrote:
Imagine there's no heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us, only sky
Imagine all the people living for today.
Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people living life in peace.
JE comments: It's been a long time since we've discussed Lennonism on WAIS! Who am I to question the wisdom of any Beatle (except perhaps Ringo), but a world without countries? I cannot imagine such a thing.
Reflections on Anarchism; from Gary Moore
(John Eipper, USA
05/12/19 3:52 AM)
Gary Moore writes:
Replying to Anthony Candil (May 11), our moderator wondered how
John Lennon of the Beatles could write a song hoping for a world without
not only religions but even without countries.
The answer is easy, though
enigmatic: anarchism. This ancient mystery can express as peaceful, dreamy
anarchism like Lennon's, or violent anarchism like Nechayev or Antifa, or
archetypal anarchism like Rousseau's. But the mystery remains: tear it all down
and the good will then flower spontaneously (rather than the more likely default
of the guy with the biggest fist or club taking over the ruins). As with other
political dreaming, society as an overall authority can't legitimately ask: "How can
they believe this crap?"--because "they" is so often "we." The consensus demands
its place at the table of possibilities. At this level, politics might seem clearly to be
psychology, but "clearly" to whom? Post-Enlightenment empiricism offers no way
to stand apart from the observations and categorize, and pre-Enlightenment dogmatism
scarcely did either.
WAIS on May 11 also segued to David Duggan's concise rap sheet
on serial killer John Wayne Gacy, with his formal MPI diagnosis of "antisocial personality
disorder (a disorder which incorporates constructs such as sociopathy and psychopathy)."
But note here that the latter two terms don't handily differentiate separate pathologies.
"Sociopath" evolved as a politically correct way to replace "psychopath"--which came
to seem bigoted, placing blame on someone's deformed psyche and not on more nebulous
society--the same path leading to "antisocial personality disorder." So might this include
anarchism? Or is that unfair? Our politics is barely above the level of trial by combat or
getting the best lawyer, since we've still found no way to systematically understand our
JE comments: Gary Moore has put his finger on it: "dreamy" (perhaps Utopian?) anarchism. Lennon himself anticipated the naysayers: They say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one.
WAIS has not given anarchism much attention, outside the context of our perennial favorite, the Spanish Civil War. We now commonly take the Libertarians to be the inheritors of the anarchist mantle, although we also associate Libertarianism with a hard-boiled Darwinism, with nothing of Lennon's touchy-feely lovefest. (I don't have a question to stimulate further discussion here, but I'll agree with Gary that anarchism is a very interesting political philosophy. It's the most extreme form of optimism: Destroy it and we will live in bliss.)