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This is simpler than you guys think it is

RuvDraba
Posts: 6,033
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7/5/2016 9:28:16 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 7/5/2016 9:01:01 PM, Quintilian wrote:
Without a doubt, I'd agree that at first glance, this-or-that God is no more likely than this-or-that other God. But I think second and third glances make some Gods -- particularly, that reached by the kind of argument I've been describing -- much more epistemologically justifiable.

Actually, I think the strongest case for a monotheism is a sociological: it supports multiethnic unity under a single, culturally-united empire, enables moral dualism, attaches it to in-groups and out-groups, insists that empire must Save the World from moral decay, and justifies expansionism, colonialism and Manifest Destiny, plus slavery for the good of the enslaved, and imperial rule as a divinely-ordained moral right.

So even if it's absolutely epistemologically indefensible, neither rulers, clergy nor merchants will care, and everyone's greed -- no, ambition! -- no, moral sanctimony! will want them to prosecute Converting the Heathen -- or else ride on the economic coattails of those who do.

After the huge psychosocial difference between that and amoral, take-it-as-it-comes tribal polytheism, any epistemological differences seem to me quibbling at the edges.
Quintilian
Posts: 35
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7/6/2016 12:11:36 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 7/5/2016 9:28:16 PM, RuvDraba wrote:
At 7/5/2016 9:01:01 PM, Quintilian wrote:
Without a doubt, I'd agree that at first glance, this-or-that God is no more likely than this-or-that other God. But I think second and third glances make some Gods -- particularly, that reached by the kind of argument I've been describing -- much more epistemologically justifiable.

Actually, I think the strongest case for a monotheism is a sociological: it supports multiethnic unity under a single, culturally-united empire, enables moral dualism, attaches it to in-groups and out-groups, insists that empire must Save the World from moral decay, and justifies expansionism, colonialism and Manifest Destiny, plus slavery for the good of the enslaved, and imperial rule as a divinely-ordained moral right.

So even if it's absolutely epistemologically indefensible, neither rulers, clergy nor merchants will care, and everyone's greed -- no, ambition! -- no, moral sanctimony! will want them to prosecute Converting the Heathen -- or else ride on the economic coattails of those who do.

After the huge psychosocial difference between that and amoral, take-it-as-it-comes tribal polytheism, any epistemological differences seem to me quibbling at the edges.

Alright while I appreciate the psychoanalysis this is about where I duck out
RuvDraba
Posts: 6,033
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7/6/2016 12:29:48 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 7/6/2016 12:11:36 AM, Quintilian wrote:
At 7/5/2016 9:28:16 PM, RuvDraba wrote:
At 7/5/2016 9:01:01 PM, Quintilian wrote:
Without a doubt, I'd agree that at first glance, this-or-that God is no more likely than this-or-that other God. But I think second and third glances make some Gods -- particularly, that reached by the kind of argument I've been describing -- much more epistemologically justifiable.

Actually, I think the strongest case for a monotheism is a sociological: it supports multiethnic unity under a single, culturally-united empire, enables moral dualism, attaches it to in-groups and out-groups, insists that empire must Save the World from moral decay, and justifies expansionism, colonialism and Manifest Destiny, plus slavery for the good of the enslaved, and imperial rule as a divinely-ordained moral right.

So even if it's absolutely epistemologically indefensible, neither rulers, clergy nor merchants will care, and everyone's greed -- no, ambition! -- no, moral sanctimony! will want them to prosecute Converting the Heathen -- or else ride on the economic coattails of those who do.

After the huge psychosocial difference between that and amoral, take-it-as-it-comes tribal polytheism, any epistemological differences seem to me quibbling at the edges.

Alright while I appreciate the psychoanalysis this is about where I duck out

Understood, Quint, though it wasn't meant to be a psychoanalysis of individual belief so much as a sociological analysis of why monotheistic dualism has been more successful in empires from the Iron Age and later than any other kind of faith. :)

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