I have not saw any atheist sites who have tackled Francis Bacon’s quote about atheism and philosophy. Well sino nga ba naman si Bacon? But maybe because I am more interested in philosophy than science eh I was affected by Bacon’s quote. (For your information, I’m not talking about Kevin Bacon puh…leeees!)
According to Francis Bacon, “It is true, that a little philosophy inclineth man’s mind to atheism; but depth in philosophy bringeth men’s minds about to religion.”
Well…I posted the quote in Yahoo!Answer to find some reactions to fellow atheists. Obviously, there are some useless answers posted…but this one answer has catches my attention.
From student_of_life: I would point to all the great minds that have been atheist or atheistic. Epicurus, Spinoza, Nietzsche, Marx, Freud, Darwin, Einstein (since his and Spinoza’s pantheism is practically atheism), and nearly all the philosophers of the 20th century. If I were to give a sympathetic reading to this quote, I would take what Bacon means by “religion” is not actually the dogmatic religions
of much of the world. It is, in this reading, a religious viewpoint which appreciates the world, is in awe over the simplest of natural objects, and constantly aware of the mystery of existence, not taking life for granted.
If this is what is meant by “religion” I would agree. Religion is not religious. In fact even the great thinkers who have belonged to religions often have had highly unorthodox religious beliefs.
So if one (mis)reads Bacon to be advocating dogmatic religions, one has a hard time actually coming up with supporting evidence. Most great thinkers have rejected orthodox dogmas. In any case, it is always a mistake to base very much on one sentence took out of context, no matter who uttered it.
Hmmmmmm….most Christians or mystics who would like to use Bacon’s quote should think twice. First, we really do not have any proof that Bacon is talking about organized and dogmatic religion. Second, we know that there are religions out there that do not have a god-concept like Buddhism and Jainism.
That just straightens the facts. So to you religious guys out there, before you use Bacon, make sure it is not as greasy as it looks.