Trans. ... All divine attributes, including the moral, borrowed from nature.—The dual concept of God: the good and evil God. [6] Freud, Sigmund. Ludwig Feuerbach, who wrote that God was invented by humans as a projection of their own ideals, and that in creating such a 'perfect' being, in contrast to themselves, mankind lowered themselves to lowly, evil creatures who needed guidance from the church and … George Eliot. Print. In the end, we can use Feuerbach as a means to sympathize more effectively with those who hold to similar atheist paradigms, and even learn a great deal from a man whose words for Christians are unexpectedly convicting. Mineola, NY: Dover Publications, 2006. The merit of Feuerbach’s theory in his own eyes, and clearly also in Harvey’s, was that it put a determinate concept, nature, in place of the vague, mystical word "God." [4] Hegel, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich. Print. New York: Barnes & Noble, 2004. In it, Feuerbach painstakingly demonstrates that the attributes of God are all nothing less than representations of the species-being of humanity: God is humanity’s way of portraying itself, as a whole, to itself – an act of alienation that had to happen in order for us to overcome mere individuality, but whose time is done. Print. Harmondsworth, Middlesex, England: Penguin, 1983. Ludwig Feuerbach and the Invented God: Understanding and Responding as Christians, One obstacle often faced by those who deny the existence of God is how to account for the billions of people throughout history who have felt so deeply convinced of His existence. New York: Norton, 1975. Leipzig: Wigand. Print. New York: Harper & Row. It seems that the evidence for the theory of the “god within” is wanting. Print. Had he had not secularized the ideas of Hegel, which were based on Christian ideals, then Hegelian thought might never have intrigued atheist intellectuals the way it did, and thinkers like Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud would have lacked the philosophical backbone they used to formulate their ideologies, which became groundbreaking not only in philosophy, but in politics, religion, and psychology as well. After we grasp Feuerbach’s argument, we as Christians must ask ourselves how to respond, for one need not look far before finding the same narrative alive and well in our own day. To put it plainly, without Feuerbach, it is likely that some of the most formative philosophy of the modern age would have developed very differently—if at all. Part I: The True or Anthropological Essence of Religion. Print. [8] Feuerbach, Ludwig. Trans. Transl. As previously stated, Feuerbach’s arguments are quickly undone when his assumption that God cannot be empirically observed is invalidated. (Kamenka 1970, 18) Anselm gained fame as the first Protestant to be elected to a chair at the Roman Catholic dominated University … New York: Barnes & Noble, 2004. As societies have secularized and traditional religion has declined, have the trends of anxiety, depression, and loneliness followed suit? [10] Feuerbach, Ludwig. That will lead into his interpretation of the Christian Gospel, in which theology becomes anthropology. Since the best known and most influential work that Feuerbach wrote was his book The Essence of Christianity, it is from this source that we will examine his ideas. [11] But what evidence do we have in support of the claim that man without God is, in fact, so well-off? Print. In this paper I’ll talk about Feuerbach’s notion of being and the concept of man that flows from this. Anselm gained popularity as the first Protestant to be elected to a chair at the Catholic dominated University of Bavaria. To his surprise, he discovered that Luther had based the certainty of Christian faith on the same principle that was at the foundation of his own new philosophy, namely, sensuousness. Communism gained many followers because of its claim to be the means by which humans can cease to rely on religion and begin to rely on themselves; refashioned Buddhism has found a large audience in the West as it teaches the importance of “looking within” to find peace; our bookstores are filled with self-help manuals and our stages with feel-good preachers that cry out for us to “know thyself” rather than to know God. Historian of religion Ninian Smart says that “Feuerbach saw God as being a projection, by us, of essential human attributes, such as reason and love” (1). Hegel believed that history is guided by the slow, imperfect, yet steady movement of reason as it progresses through time until it becomes fully realized. 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