On Fri, 13 Jul 2001 06:10:05 -0600,
in extropians-digest V6 #192,
Miriam English wrote:
>Cool! If this is right religion will be defused simply by knowledge. That
>may explain what seems to be a widespread secularising of western society
>which is annoying the hell out of religions at the moment.
Tangentially, I wonder if any others percieve the link -
that seems to me to be strong and obvious - between
religiosity and aesthetics? I worry about throwing out
the aesthetic baby with the religious bathwater, in our
drive to scotch the despised meme.
Some crude and admittedly ad hoc metaphors:
When I am in a ship I do not whistle, and I rebuke those
who do. The point here is not that I'm participating in a
ceremony, or observance, that goes back milennia, but that
I am conscious of doing so, and that that consciousness
heightens the pleasure I get from participating in it.
In a more secular vein, I get much more pleasure from
shooting competitively, even though I'm a very poor shot
(bullseye 175-225), than I do when practicing. What makes
the difference is the gravitas and punctilio demanded on
Obviously, shooting and grousing at whistlers are not
religious activity, but I see in them, in the
ceremoniousness, the accepted irrationality, and the
pleasure, things that tie to the gallery and the concert
in one direction and Trois Freres and the pyramids in
Are we confident that we can expunge the religious impulse
without losing a lot of valuable components along with it?
stencil - going to a wake this evening - sends
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