開主選單
18 世紀嘅英格蘭哲學家湯瑪斯·潘恩(Thomas Paine)嘅畫像;佢嗰一本名著《理性時代》係理神論嘅基礎[1]

理神論粵拼lei5 san4 leon6英文deism),廣東話入面又有叫自然神論,係一種宗教哲學觀點。喺最廣義上嚟講,理神論主張上帝存在並且創造咗宇宙,但認為上帝唔會直接插手干預宇宙入面發生嘅事,所以理神論者一般都拒絕任何型式嘅啟示[2]:即係話佢哋唔認為上帝會向人類傳達直接嘅訊息,相信上帝唔會派先知嚟人世或者要人類拜佢;因為噉,理神論者普遍認為聖經等嘅宗教經典衹不過係喺度老點人,根本幫唔到人類了解上帝,同時佢哋傾向提倡,真正能夠幫人類了解上帝嘅係理性科學至真[3][4]。理神論對立於無神論宗教:理神論信上帝存在,呢點令佢同無神論(唔信上帝或者任何型式嘅)相對立[5];喺另一方面,理神論又拒絕信先知代表由上帝嚟嘅訊息,呢點令理神論思想同多數宗教(尤其係基督教等信「經典係上帝話語」嘅宗教)相對立[5][6][7]

理神論誕生於啟蒙時期(The Age of Enlightenment;17 至 18 世紀)嘅歐洲:當時歐洲喺思想上有重大嘅改革,好多知識份子開始挑戰傳統基督教教會嘅權威,令到理神論受相當嘅擁戴,喺英國法國德國、同美國傳播得零舍犀利。嗰陣時啲理神論者多數都係喺基督教家庭大嘅,信一神論,但唔滿意教會成日夾硬迫信徒信嗰啲所謂嘅「正統」教義,而且又開始留意到聖經嘅內容成日都前言唔對後語,於是開始對自己由細到大信開嗰套思想重新審視。亦都有啲理神論者係出自反基督教或者非基督教嘅宗教背景嘅,但同樣對宗教反感[8][9]。呢啲思想上嘅改革打後引起咗大規模衝突,例如有唔少早期理神論者都因為佢哋所主張嘅思想而坐過監[10][11][12],而好似法國大革命美國革命等嘅當代社會革命都有受理神論嘅思潮影響[13][14]

自從誕生以嚟,理神論有過唔少上上落落,喺某啲時期,理神論人氣低到近乎冇人理,但理神論嘅思想一路都有發展緊。到咗廿一世紀,理神論主要有得分做兩個學派:古典派同摩登派[15],前者主張一種「凍」啲嘅觀點,主張上帝唔會直接插手宇宙嘅事務;而後者主張一種「暖」啲嘅觀點,認為上帝有陣時會插手宇宙嘅事務,之但係唔係透過同人類直接接觸。而除咗呢兩派之外,現代理神論仲有好多唔同嘅其他學派[16]

詞源

西人嗌法

  • 理神論嘅英文名「deism」嚟自拉丁文「deus」,呢個字嘅意思係「神」噉解-包括一神論當中嘅上帝同埋古羅馬多神信仰當中嘅眾天神。所以呢個英文名直譯會係「神論」或者「純神論」[17][18]
  • 英文入面有個字叫「theism」,呢個字嚟自希臘文嘅「θεός」(拉丁字母theós),即係希臘文入面「神」噉解。喺中世紀以至 17 世紀之前,「Deism」同「Theism」-同埋佢哋喺其他歐洲語言入面嘅對應-俾西人當係同義詞,都係指有神論(即係「相信神存在」呢一個諗法),而當中嘅「神」可以包括多神信仰入面嗰啲天神[19]。去到後嚟 18 世紀,理神論嘅思潮發展咗出嚟,先至令到西人開始區分傳統嘅有神論同理神論呢兩種思想,於是自從嗰陣開始,「theism」就變成指傳統相信上帝並且接受宗教嘅有神論,而「deism」呢個字就變成專係指理神論[20][21]

唐人嗌法

  • 喺廿世紀早期,西方學說開始散佈至大中華地區,而當時嘅唐人學者普遍將呢個詞翻譯做「自然神論」[22]
  • 另一方面,又有臺灣學者興稱呼 deism 做「理神論」,呢個名嚟自日文嘅「理神論」(平假名:りしんろん;日羅:rishinron)。呢個名強調咗 deism 同理性思考之間嘅關係[23]

概論

 
美國第三任總統湯瑪斯傑佛遜嘅畫像;佢有強烈嘅理神論傾向,出名整咗個新版本嘅聖經出嚟。
睇埋:有神論無神論同埋不可知論

基本諗法

睇埋:自然主義同埋科學哲學

古典嘅理神論嘗試理解造物主(Creator)同自然宇宙之間嘅關係。理神論建基於一個原則:信造物主存在唔等如要信教會嗰啲教義[24]。理神論者受到 17 世紀歐洲科學革命思潮影響咗,開始好似現代嘅科學家噉樣,用一套懷疑嘅態度嚟思考宇宙嘅本質同埋佢哋由細到大信開嘅諗法。佢哋指出,教會嘅教義有好多唔合理嘅地方,例如係湯瑪斯·潘恩等嘅多位理神論早期思想家都批評舊約聖經,指出呢本書當中有大量內容都係喺度鼓吹殺戮同暴力,而且有多個地方都自相矛盾,再近期啲嘅理神論者仲有指出,聖經等宗教經典嘅某啲內容(例如係挪亞方舟)同考古學嘅發現唔係好夾[25],令到佢哋對教會嗰套思想覺得反感。同時,佢哋認為拒絕宗教唔等如要拒絕相信造物主,而事實係,理神論者擺明車馬噉表咗態話拒絕無神論[24][26][27]

為咗想了解造物主,理神論者拒絕教會提倡嘅教條,反而會好似科學哲學噉,鼓勵啲人對自己持有嘅諗法抱懷疑嘅態度。理神論者將佢哋嘅思想建基於自然主義(naturalism)之上,相信宇宙萬物都可以用各種自然定律嚟解釋,主張造物主有足夠嘅聰明才智,識得齋靠喺創造宇宙嗰陣設下啲自然定律就能夠令到宇宙慢慢噉演變成佢想要嘅樣[28]。傳統嘅理神論者唔相信神蹟呢家嘢,更加唔認為造物主會派使者嚟人世,所以唔信聲稱自己代表造物主嘅宗教經典。理神論者普遍都鍾意科學,認為透過科學方法認識宇宙先至真係幫到人類了解造物主[24][28]。例如湯瑪斯·潘恩就用咗一句嘢嚟概括佢嘅諗法[29]

"Science is the true theology."
「科學先至係真正嘅神學。」

自從理神論誕生以嚟,多個思想家一路都有繼續將理神論思想發展上去,出咗多派思想,當中不乏一啲互不相容嘅諗法同埋學派。但理神論者一般都同意以下呢啲基本諗法[30][31]

  • 批判性
    • 拒絕任何型式嘅啟示-認為上帝唔使派乜嘢使者嚟人世,唔使直接干預宇宙嘅運作都有能力令到宇宙變成佢想要嘅樣;
    • 拒絕相信神蹟-上帝唔會直接干預宇宙嘅運作,所以神蹟衹不過係無聊嘅迷信
    • 拒絕宗教式嘅教條同規限;
  • 建構性
    • 相信上帝存在並且創造咗宇宙;
    • 相信上帝間接將理性思考嘅能力賦予咗俾人類;
    • 相信科學同理性係了解上帝嘅最佳方法。

點解信造物主

 
湯瑪斯·霍布斯嘅畫像
睇埋:宇宙論證

對理神論者嚟講,「點解要信造物主存在」係一個重要嘅問題。有唔少理神論者主張宇宙論證(cosmological argument),認為思考宇宙起源嘅問題可以自然噉推導出「某啲型式嘅造物主存在」呢一點(但係當然「造物主諗緊乜」或者「造物主有啲乜嘢計劃」呢啲係另外嘅問題)。例如係 18 世紀嘅英格蘭哲學家湯瑪斯·霍布斯(Thomas Hobbes)就喺佢本《Works》第四集嘅第 59 至 60 頁入面噉樣講[32]

原版英文:"The effects we acknowledge naturally, do include a power of their producing, before they were produced; and that power presupposeth something existent that hath such power; and the thing so existing with power to produce, if it were not eternal, must needs have been produced by somewhat before it, and that again by something else before that, till we come to an eternal, that is to say, the first power of all powers and first cause of all causes; and this is it which all men conceive by the name of God, implying eternity, incomprehensibility, and omnipotence."

粵文翻譯:我哋留意到嘅自然效果都係喺佢哋出現之前由第啲力量產生嘅;而呢股力量嘅存在表示咗某啲有噉嘅力量嘅嘢存在;而呢樣嘢有產生(嘢)嘅力量;如果呢樣嘢唔係永恆嘅話,噉佢一定係由第啲喺佢打前嘅嘢產生嘅,而打前嗰樣嘢又實係由第啲喺佢打前嘅嘢產生嘅,如是者一路去到一樣永恆嘅嘢嗰度,呢樣嘢就係第一股創造力量同第一個起因;呢樣嘢就係所有人心目中嘅上帝,而佢好明顯具有永恆、難解、同全能(呢幾樣特徵)。

微調宇宙

內文: 微調宇宙

微調宇宙(fine-tuned universe)係另一個廣受理神論者歡迎嘅觀點[33]。根據呢種觀點,物理學上嘅發現指出咗,宇宙入面有好多物理常數嘅數值都係啱啱好令到宇宙適合生命存在嘅,而呢啲物理常數嘅數值衹要郁(例如) 0.001% 都會令到宇宙唔適合生命存在。舉個例子說明,物理學家模擬過,強作用力(strong force)衹要勁多 2%,就會影響到核聚變作用,搞到太陽冇能力發光發熱維持地球上嘅生命。根據相信微調宇宙觀點嘅人,呢啲物理數值之所以會啱啱好適合生命存在,冇乜可能純粹嘅巧合,一個比較合理嘅解釋係,宇宙由某啲高層次嘅智能所創造,而呢個智能特登喺設計宇宙嗰陣將呢啲物理常數設到啱啱好適合生命存在[34][35]。於是就可以推導出一點-造物主存在,而且佢想要宇宙有生命[33]

上帝嘅本質

理神論肯定造物主嘅存在,但確立咗相信造物主存在之後,就要問下一個問題:除咗「創造咗宇宙」之外,造物主仲具有啲乜嘢特性?對於呢個問題嘅具體細節,理神論者之間有唔少分歧:主流嘅理神論者(尤其係早期嗰啲)都會好似猶太人、基督徒、同埋回教徒噉樣,信奉一神論(monotheism),認為造物主係一個單一個體嘅上帝,同時認為造物主同宇宙係分開獨立存在嘅兩件物體;另一方面,又有一部份嘅理神論者傾向相信多神論(polytheism),認為造物主係多個唔同個體;最後,又有啲理神論者將理神論同泛神論(pantheism)結合,好似泛神論者噉,認為宇宙同上帝係一體嘅[36]。而且就算係喺推崇一神論嘅理神論者之間,又有所謂嘅干預問題分歧:古典理神論一般相信上帝唔會郁手干預宇宙嘅運作,而係由得宇宙按照自然定律運行[30],但又有部份嘅現代理神論者相信上帝會直接干預宇宙嘅運作,衹不過唔係以派先知嚟人世嘅方式[37][38]

泛理神論

內文: 泛理神論

泛理神論(pandeism)結合咗理神論同埋泛神論-泛神論係指相信「宇宙同上帝係同一樣嘢」嘅神學觀點[39]。泛理神論早喺 16 世紀嘅文藝復興嗰陣經已有人提過,18 世紀後尾嘅古典理神論思想家都有諗過吓[40],而喺廿一世紀嘅理神論界有一定嘅人氣[41][42]。泛理神論主流認為上帝曾經係一個有意識嘅物體,設計同創造咗宇宙,但係佢跟手就同個宇宙合為一體,並且變到冇意識,但係「上帝會唔會終有一日會醒返」係一條問題。泛理神論係理神論嘅一種-因為泛理神論者相信上帝家吓係冇意識嘅,所以佢哋同古典理神論者一樣,唔信上帝會俾乜嘢啟示俾人類或者同人類溝通[43]

「理性」係乜

睇埋:理性

根據古典理神論,人類擁有理性(reason)-即係有意識噉靠觀察自己身邊嘅嘢嚟到認知宇宙同埋做判斷嘅能力。因為理神論者相信自然主義,認為宇宙萬物都可以齋靠自然定律解釋,所以人類淨係靠用理性了解自然定律就可以認識造物主,唔使乜嘢教會或者宗教經典。舉個例子說明,早期嘅英格蘭理神論作家瑪竇·廷達爾(Matthew Tindal)喺佢嗰本著作《Christianity as Old as the Creation》入面就噉樣講[44]

原版英文:"By natural religion, I understand the belief of the existence of a God, and the sense and practice of those duties which result from the knowledge we, by our reason, have of him and his perfections; and of ourselves, and our own imperfections, and of the relationship we stand in to him, and to our fellow-creatures; so that the religion of nature takes in everything that is founded on the reason and nature of things."
粵文翻譯:我所講嘅「自然宗教」(指理神論)係指我明白到上帝嘅存在,同指對(自己有嘅)義務嘅認識同實行,而呢啲義務嘅認識同實行係嚟自我哋對上帝同佢嘅完美嘅認知、嚟自對自己嘅認知、嚟自對我哋自己嘅唔完美嘅認知、嚟自我哋對自己同上帝之間嘅關係嘅認知、同埋對自己以外嘅生靈嘅認知嘅。所以自然嘅宗教包羅嗮所有建基於理性同萬物本質嘅嘢。

理神論主張以科學方法嚟認識宇宙,科學方法涉及嘅係不斷觀察大自然嘅現象嚟搵出普遍嘅自然定律。而理神論者一般認為,用科學方法認識咗宇宙,就能夠幫到手認識宇宙嘅創造者(即係上帝),所以[45]

  • 理神論拒絕一啲聲稱自己幫到人了解上帝、但係冇辦法客觀驗證嘅嘢。例如係啟示噉,啟示所涉及嘅係啲先知聲稱話「上帝同我傾偈,俾咗乜嘢乜嘢指示我」,但呢啲宣稱係冇辦法客觀驗證嘅,所以理神論拒絕一切嘅啟示。
  • 理神論亦都極力反對神秘主義(mysticism)。有多個理神論思想家都指出,話啲神職人員成日講出「上帝嘅嘢係人冇辦法理解嘅」呢類宣稱,好大程度上目的衹不過係喺度老點啲信徒,或者係喺唔夠人詏嗰陣迴避問題。

教會嘅本質

初頭嘅理神論者-好似係瑪竇·廷達爾同湯瑪斯·潘恩-好多都主張話原先人類係有一個理性又簡單嘅信仰嘅,後嚟先至俾教會嘅內部權鬥等嘅原因搞到腐敗咗。佢哋覺得啲神職人員好多時會為咗自己個人利益或者係成個神職人員階層嘅利益而老點啲信眾,又或者係死要面喺唔夠人詏嗰陣用神秘主義等嘅方式嚟避開問題[46]

根據呢種世界觀,隨住年日過去,神職人員成功噉用一大柞迷信同「神秘」將本嚟嗰個理性又簡單嘅信仰「包」住嗮,而呢啲迷信同神秘就係指教會嗰啲神學信條[46]:因為嗰啲神學信條太複雜又成日自相矛盾,搞到啲信眾根本唔明,而跟住啲神職人員就會同啲信眾講,話得神職人員會明呢啲嘢-於是啲信眾就俾佢哋哄到自願接受啲神職人員嘅權威,會將錢、權力、同尊重等等神職人員想要嘅嘢交俾佢哋;但係當然,就算啲信眾噉做,佢哋都仲唔會明啲神學信條,因為呢啲神學信條根本冇內容,衹不過係教會為咗呃人而將呢啲信條用好靚嘅文字包裝起而成嘅;啲信眾俾佢哋老點咗,啲神職人員就能夠扮到好似識好多嘢噉-就對佢哋啲信眾有咗一股影響力。早期嘅理神論思想家仲將神職人員做嘅嘢話係「神術」(priestcraft)-即係將神職人員做嘅嘢比喻做巫術(witchcraft)。湯瑪斯·潘恩喺佢本《理性時代》第 2 部第 129 頁嗰度噉樣講:

原版英文:"As priestcraft was always the enemy of knowledge, because priestcraft supports itself by keeping people in delusion and ignorance, it was consistent with its policy to make the acquisition of knowledge a real sin."

粵文翻譯:神術不嬲都係知識嘅敵人,因為神術維持自己(存在)嘅方法就係令到啲人繼續妄想同無知,佢同佢將獲得知識(學習同發問)視為一種罪嘅政策符合。

呢個諗法暗示咗,呢類理神論者認為遠古嘅早期社會有一啲冇乜迷信喺度嘅宗教信仰,但係好似大衛休謨(David Hume)等嘅史學家喺研究完原始社會之後,發覺嗰陣時啲信仰都唔係噉理性,而係好建基於情緒之上嘅-例如係出於對未知嘅恐懼而拜鬼神噉。所以對於早期理神論者嘅上述呢個睇法,現代嘅理神論者多數都淨係信「教會用好多方法搵人老襯」呢一個部份,而唔信「早期嘅人類信仰係理性嘅」嗰一個部份[47]

重要議題

 
富蘭克林嘅畫像;佢係一個好博學嘅理神論者,有寫過吓政治著作,又有做過電磁學方面嘅研究。

對耶穌嘅睇法

睇埋:基督徒理神論

理神論嘅基本諗法係要拒絕相信啟示,唔信上帝會派使者嚟人世,所以理神論者普遍都唔會好似基督徒噉信耶穌係上帝之子[48],亦都唔會好似回教徒噉信耶穌係上帝嘅先知[49]。但理神論者普遍都唔會否定,耶穌係一個好特別嘅人[50]。而至於耶穌嘅具體地位係點,唔同學派嘅理神論者有唔同嘅睇法:

  • 有一部份嘅理神論者唔信神蹟同埋預言,但依然覺得自己係「基督徒」。噉係因為呢類理神論者興將基督徒定義為「真正跟隨拿撒勒人耶穌嘅人」,並且認為佢哋信奉嘅先至係耶穌真正教緊嗰套,覺得現時嘅基督教好大程度上衹不過係教會後尾對耶穌嘅教誨加鹽加醋老作出嚟嘅。呢種諗法喺古典理神論者(睇下面)當中零舍常見[50]
  • 又有啲理神論者唔信耶穌有神性又唔認為自己係「真正嘅基督徒」,但覺得耶穌佢品德好好,啲教誨好值得欣賞,所以會以耶穌作為道德上嘅榜樣;呢種理神論者有陣時會俾學界嗌佢哋做「基督徒理神論者」,當中最出名嘅要數美國第三任總統湯瑪斯傑佛遜(Thomas Jefferson)-傑佛遜佢唔淨衹信呢種主張,仲整咗傑佛遜聖經(The Jefferson Bible)呢本書出嚟,呢個版本嘅聖經淨係包含耶穌嘅道德教誨,將其他內容-舊約聖經同啲預言-通通都攞走嗮[51]
  • 再激少少嘅理神論者會全盤噉拒絕基督教嘅一切,包括耶穌嘅教誨,甚至否定耶穌係一個真正存在嘅歷史人物,甚至對基督教有敵意,因為佢哋覺得基督教完全係妖言惑眾嘅迷信,呢一類型嘅理神論者俾好多基督徒指話佢哋係無神論者[52]

理神論者唔信任何型式嘅啟示,所以除咗耶穌之外,一般亦都會拒絕第啲先知,包括摩西穆罕默德等等。

決定論同自由

睇埋:決定論同埋自由意志

啟蒙時期嘅思想家相信決定論(determinism):佢哋俾牛頓嘅研究影響咗,傾向認為宇宙係一部好大嘅機器,由一個造物主創造同啟動,而且仲會繼續跟住造物主設下嘅自然定律一路行,唔使造物主插手都會自動噉變成造物主想要嘅樣;喺一個噉嘅宇宙入面,喺任何一個時間點,如果有個人完全知道嗮個宇宙嘅狀態嘅話,會有能力完美噉靠自然定律預測個宇宙下一刻嘅狀態。呢種思想就係所謂嘅決定論[53]。相信呢種學說暗示咗個人相信人類嘅行為都係完完全全噉由自然定律話事嘅。於是乎,嗰陣時啲思想家-無論係教會嘅神學家定係理神論者-都好興辯論到底人類真係具有所謂嘅自由意志(free will),定係衹不過係同其他嘢(好似係牛頓力學描述嘅嗰啲死物)一樣,係完全受制於自然定律嘅。喺呢方面,早期嘅理神論者同近代嘅理神論者有唔少分歧:

  • 早期理神論者一般都好仰慕自然定律同埋冇神蹟嘅宇宙。因為噉,早期理神論者好多時都傾向決定論,甚至覺得人類係完全冇自由意志嘅[54]
  • 廿一世紀嘅理神論者對於決定論嘅接受程度普遍都係麻麻地:喺廿世紀早期,量子力學(quantum mechanics)等嘅物理學理論表示咗[55],宇宙入面有一部份嘅物理過程係本質上帶有隨機性嘅,令到古典嘅決定論崩潰,所以對於自由意志嘅問題,學界又有咗新嘅討論,當代嘅理神論者好多都有留意呢類討論,發現「人類行為係完全受制於自然定律嘅」呢個諗法未必企到喺度[56][57]

死後生命

睇埋:死後生命

對於死後生命(afterlife)呢家嘢係點樣嘅,理神論並冇共識:有啲理神論者主張人類有靈魂,而靈魂喺個人死咗之後都仲會繼續存在,並且按照佢哋喺生前嘅功過決定佢哋喺死後生命會受獎勵定係受懲罰;又有一啲理神論者,好似係美國開國元勛之一嘅富蘭克林(Benjamin Franklin)噉,相信輪迴轉世等嘅諗法[58];當中湯瑪斯·潘恩好確定噉相信靈魂嘅存在,但係對於死後生命係點嘅樣,佢冇乜點樣表達意見,佢喺佢本《理性時代》嘅第一部份嗰度噉講:

原版英文:"I believe in one God, and no more; and I hope for happiness beyond this life."

粵文翻譯:我相信一個上帝,淨係噉啫;我希望喺呢一條生命之後會得到幸福。

又有第啲理神論思想家主張物質主義(materialism),認為宇宙除咗物質之外就乜嘢都冇,所以冇乜嘢靈魂或者死後生命。英格蘭哲學家 Anthony Collins、英格蘭作家 Thomas Chubb、同英格蘭思想家 Peter Annet 等等都主張呢種諗法[59][60]

祈禱

理神論嘅一個議題係有關祈禱嘅:古典理神論者主張一個人類個體同上帝之間嘅關係唔係個人嘅,因為佢哋認為上帝喺創造咗宇宙之後就俾個宇宙跟住佢啲自然定律嚟行,所以唔會直接插手落去干預人類嘅活動,而係間接噉將理性同良心等嘅嘢賦予咗俾人類,等人類可以自己做決定。有好多現代理神論者都信呢套諗法,於是就有一個問題-祈禱(即係嘗試同上帝傾偈)到底係咪一樣有意義嘅行為?對於呢個問題,理神論者之間有唔細嘅分歧:

  • 有部份嘅理神論者主張,上帝創造嘅宇宙係完美噉跟從佢所創嘅自然定律嚟運行嘅,無論一個人點樣對上帝又囈又篩話想要呢啲嘢改變都唔會有效,所以祈禱頂嗮櫳都衹可以當係對人類情感需求嘅一種滿足。
  • 又有一部份嘅理神論者相信上帝唔係一個人類可以直接同佢溝通嘅物體;相反,佢哋認為上帝淨係有得透過對大自然嘅觀察嚟到體驗。
  • 又有啲理神論者唔信上帝會干預宇宙嘅事務,但係覺得祈禱可以當係一種冥想,對人類靈性上嘅修為有幫助。呢種理神論者嘅祈禱多數都係傾向欣賞性,而唔係要求性嘅-即係「上帝,多謝你乜乜乜」,而唔係囈上帝幫佢手做啲乜乜物物[61]
  • 有啲理神論者會做冥想,並且成日用祈禱嗰陣講嘅嘢嚟做自我鼓勵[62]

起源背景

由一班耶穌會傳教士喺 1687 年響巴黎出版、有關孔子思想嘅書
馬丁路德嗰個版本嘅聖經,1534 年;馬丁路德認為天主教會篡改過聖經,於是整咗個佢自己嘅版本出嚟。

遠古

理神論思想係喺啟蒙時期嘅歐洲(尤其係喺英國)先至正式開始有嘅,但係類似理神論嘅諗法早喺遠古時代嗰陣己經有:古希臘嘅哲學家赫拉克利特(Heraclitus)提出咗個諗法,主張宇宙入面有一個至高嘅理性原則,並且認為有一個「掌管宇宙萬物嘅嗰個智慧(體)」存在-係一個相當似一神論嘅諗法,同古希臘嗰陣時嗰啲多神信仰思想截然不同;後嚟柏拉圖(Plato)仲直接噉提出話上帝好似一個「工匠」噉,而呢點似十足啟蒙時期理神論者所講嘅嗰個上帝。古希臘以外嘅遠古文明嘅思想家都有些少類似嘅討論[63]

文藝復興

文藝復興(Renaissance)嗰陣嘅歐洲喺思想上有重大嘅變化:當時嘅歐洲人重新發現古希臘同古羅馬嘅文化遺產,對古希臘嘅哲學著作當中嘅思想興趣大增,人文主義自然科學又得到空前嘅成功,而且同一時間,西歐嘅基督教教會內部出現咗大分裂。呢啲因素令到歐洲人開始唔再當天主教會係智慧嘅唯一來源,更加唔再覺得天主教會喺思想上係整定要征服全世界嘅。

當時歐洲人嘅航海活動有幫到手引起歐洲喺思想上嘅改革。喺 16 至 17 世紀,歐洲人開始接觸到美洲亞洲、同太平洋等地嘅文化,發現咗前人未知嘅文化多樣性,跟住就開始質疑:噉多唔同嘅人種同語言點可能係好似舊約聖經所講,由兩個人-原祖父母-嗰度嚟嘅。而且呢啲外來思想開始影響返歐洲人轉頭,好似係孔子嘅思想由耶穌會(Jesuit)傳教士譯做歐洲語言[64],對後嚟嘅理神論思想有一定嘅影響,亦都令到某啲啟蒙時期思想家有興趣嘗試將孔子嘅諗法加落去基督教道德系統入面[65][66]。呢啲影響令到歐洲人開始咗質疑教會傳統教嘅嗰套「教會同聖經係唯一真理」,當中英格蘭嘅宗教思想家愛德華·赫伯特(Edward Herbert)就喺佢 1645 年出嗰本書《De Religione Laici》入面噉樣評論宗教多樣性呢一個現象[67]

原版英文:"Many faiths or religions, clearly, exist or once existed in various countries and ages, and certainly there is not one of them that the lawgivers have not pronounced to be as it were divinely ordained, so that the Wayfarer finds one in Europe, another in Africa, and in Asia, still another in the very Indies."
粵文翻譯:好明顯,喺多個國家同時代都有過好多唔同嘅信仰同宗教,而好肯定嘅係,佢哋(呢啲信仰同宗教)當中冇一個啲教士唔係講到啲教條好似係由某啲形式嘅神性講落嘅噉,正如旅行者喺歐洲搵到一個(即係指基督教)、喺非洲又搵到個、喺亞洲又搵到個、而喺美洲土著當中又搵到個。

歐洲宗教紛爭

喺啟蒙打前嘅歐洲發生咗大型嘅教會分裂。中世紀西歐喺宗教上不嬲都係由天主教會主導嘅(而東歐係由東正教主導嘅),但係喺 16 世紀嗰陣出現咗馬丁路德(Martin Luther)呢個人物,佢重新將聖經由希伯來文希臘文譯做德文,創立自己嘅新教派,又大談羅馬教會嘅腐敗,激到教宗生虾噉跳。馬丁路德引起咗宗教改革,仲令到西歐喺宗教上發生大分裂,形成咗基督新教出嚟。呢場宗教分裂造成嘅政治緊張搞到歐洲發生咗三十年戰爭呢場宗教戰爭。呢場仗好大陣仗,例如係德國,據估計就有成 15% 至 20% 嘅人都因為打呢場仗死咗[68][69]

呢啲宗教上嘅紛爭涉及到因為神職人員對聖經章節嘅唔同詮釋而起嘅政治意見分歧,所以呢場風波亦都令到好多歐洲嘅學者同思想家開始重新去反思宗教同真理呢方面嘅問題-間接令到一部份嘅人產生「想放棄宗教」呢個諗法[70]

科學上嘅發現

17 世紀嘅歐洲喺科學上嘅重大躍進-即係所謂嘅科學革命(The Scientific Revolution)[71]-喺思想上對西人造成咗好大嘅震盪。哥白尼開普勒、同伽利略等科學家嘅研究令到歐洲人放棄舊陣時「地球係宇宙中心」嘅諗法,並且開始挑戰聖經嘅權威,當中伽利略就為咗堅持自己對日心說嘅諗法而俾教廷指控話佢係異端分子。呢一連串嘅事開始令到好多歐洲人相信,聖經頂櫳都衹不過係喺信仰同道德上嘅權威,喺科學知識上冇資格話事。例如伽利略就曾經講過話認為「上帝嘅本質係要透過佢嘅工作(指應該用科學了解嘅自然宇宙)嚟認識嘅,而上帝嘅教導係要透過佢所啟示嘅話語(指聖經)嚟認識嘅」("God is known by nature in his works, and by doctrine in his revealed word.")[72]。總體嚟講,伽利略等嘅科學家雖然未有諗到理神論,但係佢哋嘅影響令到好多歐洲人踏出咗邁向理神論嘅第一步-以科學同理性,而唔係宗教經典,嚟認識上帝[73][74]

古典理神論

法國哲學家伏爾泰嘅畫像
由湯瑪斯傑佛遜親手寫嗰本《The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth》嘅封面,1820 年

喺英國盛放

德裔美國史學家伯多祿·基(Peter Gay)認為,古典理神論係喺 1690 年代尾正式出現喺歷史舞台上嘅。嗰陣,愛爾蘭思想家莊·吐蘭(John Toland)寫咗本書叫《Christianity not Mysterious》(粵文:基督教唔神秘),佢喺呢本書當中大講佢對基督教嘅諗法,並且大力主張認為,信仰上最基礎嘅教條(即係良心同基本嘅道德)冚唪唥都可以由人齋靠理性嚟學,根本唔使教會教-呢種諗法係理神論嘅基本原則[75]

莊·吐蘭嘅著作引起咗當時啲知識份子嘅注意,呢啲知識份子包括咗一啲受過高等教育嘅學者、自學成材嘅自由思想家、又有啲俾伯多祿·基形容係「近乎黐線」嘅人[76]。呢啲人對理神論廣泛噉展開辯論,而呢一連串嘅辯論起碼要去到成 1740 年代先至降溫[76]。喺呢個時期,對理神論興趣最濃烈嘅地方就係英國,當時嘅英國出咗好多出位嘅理神論思想家,幫理神論定咗個基礎[77][78]

理神論後嚟話噉快就傳播到去隔個海嘅大陸歐洲嗰度,引起咗西歐另一個文化思想上繁榮嘅地區-法國-嘅注意[79]

喺法國傳播

法國喺歷史上出過好多自然神學家,不嬲都有開對教會抱持懷疑態度嘅哲學傳統,而喺法國大革命打後嘅一段時間之內,拜至高者(supreme being;上帝嘅別名)仲取代天主教做咗一陣法國嘅國教。嗰個時代嘅法國理神論思想界最出名嘅要數大哲學家伏爾泰法文:Voltaire,真名係「François-Marie Arouet」)。伏爾泰睇咗好多有關牛頓嗰套科學嘅著作,後嚟仲喺 1726 年嗰陣去英國嗰度暫住咗兩年,令到佢有咗強烈嘅理神論取向。伏爾泰佢一方面重複噉表態相信上帝存在[80],又寫咗好多嘢嚟批評包括基督教在內嘅亞巴郎諸教。例如佢對於舊約聖經入面一啲比較暴力嘅內容就做過噉嘅評論:

英文:"It is characteristic of fanatics who read the holy scriptures to tell themselves: God killed, so I must kill; Abraham lied, Jacob deceived, Rachel stole: so I must steal, deceive, lie. But, wretch, you are neither Rachel, nor Jacob, nor Abraham, nor God; you are just a mad fool, and the popes who forbade the reading of the Bible were extremely wise."
粵文翻譯:啲睇完神聖經典(包括聖經)嘅狂人通常都會同自己講:上帝殺過人,所以我一定要殺人;亞伯拉罕講過大話,雅各呃過人,拉結偷過嘢(註:上述三個人係聖經嘅先知或者相關人物),所以我一定要偷嘢、呃人、講大話。但係傻仔,你又唔係拉結、唔係雅各、唔係亞伯拉罕、唔係上帝;你衹不過係一個黐線蠢材,而唔俾人睇聖經嘅教宗真係醒到極點(註:當時啲聖經多數係用拉丁文或者希臘文寫嘅,所以有返噉上下教育程度嘅人先識睇,而平民多數連字都唔識多隻,衹係有得聽教會講)[81]

當時英國同法國係西歐嘅兩個頭號大國:英國嗰陣時喺航海上攞到空前嘅成功,帝國版圖擴展到去全世界多個洲,令到理神論相關嘅出版物流傳咗去離歐洲本土好遠嘅地方-例如係美國;另一方面,法國當時喺軍事同文化上嘅強大令到佢對西歐大陸地區有好勁嘅影響力,令到大陸各地嘅歐洲人-意大利伊比利亞半島、同內陸啲嘅奧地利波蘭等-都開始接觸到理神論嘅思想[82]

美國理神論

美國嘅開國元勛多數有理神論傾向。喺 17 世紀尾同 18 世紀頭,美國啱啱脫離大英帝國獨立咗冇幾耐,仲好興同歐洲人打交道,亦都因而吸收咗當時歐洲嘅啟蒙時期思想。啟蒙時期嘅歐洲產生咗宗教自由等嘅諗頭,而宗教自由仲成為咗美國憲法嘅其中一條基本原則。美國開國元勛同相關人物當中有好多位都深受理神論影響[83][84][85],包括正話提咗,屬於美國開國元勛嘅湯瑪斯傑佛遜、湯瑪斯·潘恩、同富蘭克林噉。呢班人曾經好多次噉表態主張認為上帝存在,但係同時又對宗教同神職人員有頗為負面嘅評價,例如係湯瑪斯傑佛遜就寫咗好多封信嚟討論啟蒙思想,佢喺 1820 年嗰陣寫咗一封信俾佢個秘書,喺信入面噉講:

英文:"[T]he serious enemies are the priests of the different religious sects, to whose spells on the human mind its improvement is ominous."
粵文翻譯:嚴重嘅敵人係唔同宗教教派嗰啲神父,人類心靈嘅改進危害到佢哋(指啲神父)向人類心靈施嘅咒語。

呢啲知識份子好提倡理神論嘅思想,仲有嘗試將理神論推廣俾普羅大眾。例如湯瑪斯·潘恩就鍾意用英文呢啲平民日常會講嘅語言寫書討論理神論(而唔係好似當時嘅教會噉,用拉丁文同希臘文呢啲一般平民唔識睇嘅文字),雖然「當時嘅社會大眾有幾接納理神論」呢個問題到咗家吓歷史學界都仲喺度詏緊[86]

一般歷史學家都認為,湯瑪斯傑佛遜係美國開國元勛當中其中一個最爆響口噉表態撐理神論嘅(雖然佢稱自己做一位論派者,而唔係理神論者)。佢喺 1820 年嗰陣完成咗佢本傑佛遜聖經(The Jefferson Bible):《The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth》(粵文:拿撒勒人耶穌嘅一生同德行)呢本書係一個新版本嘅聖經,淨係包括咗新約福音裏面耶穌嗰啲道德教誨-即係將舊約聖經、使徒保羅寫嗰柞嘢、以及啲有關預言同神蹟嘅內容通通攞走嗮。一般都認為,湯瑪斯傑佛遜佢噉樣做反映咗好強烈嘅理神論取向-唔信超自然嘅嘢,淨係要耶穌嘅道德教導[87]

現代理神論

 
16 世紀嘅意大利神學家布魯諾(Giordano Bruno)嘅雕像;佢因為主張類似泛理神論嘅睇法而俾人告佢異端,最後仲搞到俾羅馬教會用火刑處死佢。

理神論嘅重生

古典理神論最後走向咗衰落,但係就喺互聯網時代再次崛起。歷史學家認為,到咗 1800 年左右,古典理神論經已唔算一個影響力強嘅思想流派,而喺打後嘅 19 世紀,古典理神論因為唔夠無神論同基督教嘅一啲新思想派爭,而走向咗衰落,冇乜點再有人提[88][89]。雖然係噉,廿世紀後半橛嘅互聯網科技令到人類重新噉發現咗理神論-現代嘅西人好多都對教會覺得厭惡,但係又唔想信無神論,於是由廿世紀後期開始,好多西人都開始有理神論嘅傾向,仲將現代嘅科學知識融入去古典理神論入面,形成咗現代嘅理神論[2][47]

有研究指出,理神論喺廿一世紀有崛起嘅跡象:喺 2001 年,有團體做咗份問卷調查,抽咗 50,000 個人問佢哋嘅信仰,估計美國喺 2001 年有 49,000 個理神論者,呢個數字係美國人口嘅 0.02%;而更加緊要嘅係,喺 1990 年至 2001 年期間,認同自己係理神論者嘅美國人數量升咗成 6.17 倍噉多-如果呢個研究結果反映到美國普羅大眾嘅話,噉表示理神論係美國喺嗰段期間增長得最犀利嘅信仰類別[90][91]。同一個團體喺 2008 年又做咗次調查,發現美國人有成 12%(3,800 萬人)都有理神論取向[92]-增長速度驚人。

理神論主張上帝存在得嚟又唔相信神聖啟示,令到佢對宗教嘅兩極嘅人-由虔誠嘅教會信徒以至無神論者-都有一定嘅吸引力,例如係廿世紀嘅英格蘭哲學家 Antony Flew 就由無神論改信理神論[93],又有啲做天主教神父做咗廿年嘅人改信理神論[94]

概論

現代嘅理神論者嘗試將古典嘅理神論思想結合埋現代嘅哲學同科學知識,再加上理神論唔似得教會噉,喺「應該信啲乜」上由個組織嘅權威話事,所以產生好多唔同種嘅思想流派。好多時個個理神論者對上帝嘅本質同死後生命等嘅議題有唔同嘅意見。雖然係噉,始終佢哋都係受到湯瑪斯·潘恩等人嘅著作影響咗,所以佢哋一般都會同意「相信造物主」、「拒絕教會同啟示」、以及「用理性了解上帝」等嘅幾個基本諗法。World Union of Deists(WUD;「世界理神論者聯盟」)就噉樣定義現代人對理神論嘅了解[47]

原版英文:"Deism is the recognition of a universal creative force greater than that demonstrated by mankind, supported by personal observation of laws and designs in nature and the universe, perpetuated and validated by the innate ability of human reason coupled with the rejection of claims made by individuals and organized religions of having received special divine revelation."

粵文翻譯:理神論係對一股宇宙創造力嘅認識,呢股創造力遠大過人類所展示嘅好多,(理神論)受到個人對宇宙同大自然當中嘅定律同設計嘅觀察嚟支撐,由人類嘅理性驗證同維持,以及由對個人或者宗教組織「收到神聖啟示」嘅宣稱嘅拒絕嚟驗證同維持。

現代嘅理神論者對於上帝嘅本質以及上帝同宇宙之間嘅關係呢啲問題有好多唔同嘅見解。佢哋一般會同意想用理性同對大自然嘅觀察作為信仰嘅基礎。理神論思想可以用佢哋對上帝嘅本質嘅見解嚟到分類:有啲理神論者觀察完宇宙之後見到宇宙有一啲特別嘅設計,並且認為呢啲設計顯示咗造物主嘅一啲目的;有啲理神論者認為上帝同宇宙係噉喺度互動,一齊創造啲嘢;有啲理神論者主張古典理神論嗰種睇法,認為上帝會觀察人類但係唔會直接噉插手落去人類嘅生活嗰度。泛理神論都係喺呢個時期開始廣泛噉散播嘅[95]

睇埋

參考書

理神論思想

理神論歷史

  • An Age of Infidels: The Politics of Religious Controversy in the Early United States by Eric R. Schlereth (University of Pennsylvania Press; 2013) 295 pages; on conflicts between deists and their opponents.
  • Herrick, James A. (1997). The Radical Rhetoric of the English Deists: The Discourse of Skepticism, 1680–1750. University of South Carolina Press. 
  • English Deism: Its Roots and Its Fruits by John Orr (1934)
  • European Thought in the Eighteenth Century by Paul Hazard (1946, English translation 1954)
  • Early Deism in France: From the so-called 'deistes' of Lyon (1564) to Voltaire's 'Lettres philosophiques' (1734) by C. J. Betts (Martinus Nijhoff, 1984)
  • The Seventeenth Century Background: Studies on the Thought of the Age in Relation to Poetry and Religion by Basil Willey (1934)
  • The Eighteenth Century Background: Studies on the Idea of Nature in the Thought of the Period by Basil Willey (1940)
  • Simon Tyssot de Patot and the Seventeenth-Century Background of Critical Deism by David Rice McKee (Johns Hopkins Press, 1941)
  • The Historical Argument for the Resurrection of Jesus During the Deist Controversy by William Lane Craig (Edwin Mellen, 1985)
  • Deism, Masonry, and the Enlightenment. Essays Honoring Alfred Owen Aldridge. Ed. J. A. Leo Lemay. Newark, University of Delaware Press, 1987.

  1. Rickman, T. C. (1819). The Life of Thomas Paine. (p. 130). Pr. and publ. by TC Rickman, and to be had of all Booksellers.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Welcome to Deism, Deism Defined, Deist Glossary and FAQ. World Union of Deists.
  3. "Deism". Encyclopædia Britannica. 2012. In general, Deism refers to what can be called natural religion, the acceptance of a certain body of religious knowledge that is inborn in every person or that can be acquired by the use of reason and the rejection of religious knowledge when it is acquired through either revelation or the teaching of any church.
  4. "Deism". Jewish Encyclopedia. 1906. Retrieved 2012-10-10. DEISM: A system of belief which posits God's existence as the cause of all things, and admits its perfection, but rejects Divine revelation and government, proclaiming the all-sufficiency of natural laws.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Herrick, J., & Herrick, J. (1985). Against the Faith: Essays on Deists, Skeptics, and Atheists (p. 96). Buffalo, NY: Prometheus Books.
  6. Deism.
  7. Byrne, P. (2013). Natural religion and the nature of religion: The legacy of deism. Routledge.
  8. Thomsett, Michael C. (2011). Heresy in the Roman Catholic Church: A History. McFarland. p. 222. ISBN 978-0-7864-8539-0. Retrieved 2013-05-16.
  9. James E. Force; Richard Henry Popkin (1990). Essays on the context, nature, and influence of Isaac Newton's theology. Springer. p. 43.
  10. Freethought and Freedom: Deism, The Age of Reason, and Richard Carlile.
  11. Atkins, G. D. (1972). Pope and deism: a new analysis. The Huntington Library Quarterly, 257-278.
  12. Reid, W. H. (1800). The Rise and Dissolution of the Infidel Societies in this Metropolis: Including the Origin of Modern Deism and Atheism, the Genius and Conduct of Thos Associations... From the Publication of Paine's Age of Reason Till the Present Period (etc.). Hatchard.
  13. Wilson, Ellen Judy; Reill, Peter Hanns (2004). Deism. Infobase Publishing. pp. 146–148.
  14. "Deism". The Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization. 2011. doi:10.1002/9780470670606.wbecc0408/abstract. Deism is a rationalistic, critical approach to theism with an emphasis on natural theology. The Deists attempted to reduce religion to what they regarded as its most foundational, rationally justifiable elements. Deism is not, strictly speaking, the teaching that God wound up the world like a watch and let it run on its own, though that teaching was embraced by some within the movement.
  15. Hardwick, J. "Modern Deism". J. Hardwick.
  16. James W. Sire (2009). The Universe Next Door: A Basic Worldview Catalog. InterVarsity Press. pp. 59–64.
  17. R. E. Allen (ed) (1990). The Concise Oxford Dictionary. Oxford University Press.
  18. "Deist – Definition and More from the Free Merriam-Webster Dictionary". Merriam-webster.com. 2012.
  19. Orr, John (1934). English Deism: Its Roots and Its Fruits. Eerdmans. p. 13.
  20. Bayle, Pierre (1820) [1697]. "Viret". Dictionnaire historique et critique (in French). 14 (Nouvelle ed.). Paris: Desoer.
  21. See the entry for "Deism" in the on-line Dictionary of the History of Ideas.
  22. 趙林.《在上帝與牛頓之間》. 北京: 東方出版社. 2007.
  23. "一切能作為學問而出現的未來形上學之序論." (2008).
  24. 24.0 24.1 24.2 Justo L. González (1984). The Reformation to the present day. HarperCollins.
  25. Davies, Philip (April 2010). "Beyond Labels: What Comes Next?". The Bible and Interpretation. Retrieved 2016-05-31. It has been accepted for decades that the Bible is not in principle either historically reliable or unreliable, but both: it contains both memories of real events and also fictions.
  26. Joseph C. McLelland; Canadian Corporation for Studies in Religion (November 1988). Prometheus rebound: the irony of atheism. Wilfrid Laurier Univ. Press. p. 85.
  27. Feder, Kenneth L. (2010). Encyclopedia of Dubious Archaeology: From Atlantis to the Walam Olum. Santa Barbara, California: ABC-CLIO.
  28. 28.0 28.1 The Clockmaker: A God of Reason. World Union of Deists.
  29. Insightful Thomas Paine Quotes on Religion. ThoughtCo.
  30. 30.0 30.1 Deism: Belief in a Perfect God Who Does Not Intervene. ThoughtCo.
  31. Stephen, L. (1881). History of English thought in the eighteenth century (Vol. 2). Smith, Elder & Company.
  32. Orr, John (1934). English Deism: Its Roots and Its Fruits. Eerdmans.
  33. 33.0 33.1 The case for Deism...or not?.
  34. Rees, Martin (May 3, 2001). Just Six Numbers: The Deep Forces That Shape The Universe (1st American ed.). New York, NY: Basic Books. p. 4.
  35. Davis, Paul (2007). Cosmic Jackpot: Why Our Universe Is Just Right for Life. New York, NY: Orion Publications. p. 2.
  36. Deism. The Basics of Philosophy.
  37. Do Deists Have a Personal Relationship with God?. Church of The Modern Deist.
  38. Miracles. Enlightenment Deism.
  39. The New Oxford Dictionary Of English. Oxford: Clarendon Press. 1998. p. 1341.
  40. Große, Gottfried (1787). Naturgeschichte: mit erläuternden Anmerkungen. p. 165.
  41. Sagan, Dorion, "Dazzle Gradually: Reflections on the Nature of Nature" 2007, p 14.
  42. Heaven and Nature, Ross Douthat, New York Times, 20 December 2009
  43. "Deism Defined, Welcome to Deism, Deist Glossary and Frequently Asked Questions". Deism.com.
  44. Waring, E. Graham (1967). Deism and Natural Religion: A Source Book. p. 113.
  45. Waring, Edward Graham (1967). Deism and natural religion: a source book. F. Ungar Pub. Co.
  46. 46.0 46.1 Champion, J.A.I. (2014). The Pillars of Priestcraft Shaken: The Church of England and its Enemies, 1660-1730. Cambridge University Press (Cambridge Studies in Early Modern British History). Champion maintains that historical argument was a central component of the Deists's defences of what they considered true religion.
  47. 47.0 47.1 47.2 Deism Defined. World Union of Deists.
  48. Mossner, Ernest Campbell (1967). "Deism". The Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Vol. 2. Collier-MacMillan. pp. 326–336.
  49. Jesus Christ in History and Scripture, Edgar V. McKnight, p. 96 (1999).
  50. 50.0 50.1 Michael Corbett and Julia Mitchell Corbett, Politics and religion in the United States (1999) p. 68.
  51. The Jefferson Bible, introduction by M. A. Sotelo, (2004) Promotional Sales Books, LLC paperback.
  52. Was Jesus a Real Person or Just a Figment of Human Imagination. World Union of Deists.
  53. David Hartley, for example, described himself as "quite in the necessitarian scheme. See Ferg, Stephen, "Two Early Works of David Hartley", Journal of the History of Philosophy, vol. 19, no. 2 (April 1981), pp. 173–89.
  54. See for example Liberty and Necessity (1729).
  55. V. Braginski and F. Khalili, Quantum Measurements, Cambridge University Press, 1992.
  56. Quantum Mechanics Supports Free Will. Big Think.
  57. The Quantum Physics of Free Will. Scientific American.
  58. Orr, John (1934). English Deism: Its Roots and Its Fruits. Eerdmans. p. 137.
  59. Orr, John (1934). English Deism: Its Roots and Its Fruits. Eerdmans. p. 78.
  60. Orr, John (1934). English Deism: Its Roots and Its Fruits. Eerdmans. p. 134.
  61. "Deism Defined, Welcome to Deism, Deist Glossary and Frequently Asked Questions". Deism.com. 2009-06-25.
  62. Lockard, Jim. "Affirmative Prayer". Affirmative Prayer.
  63. The discussion of the background of deism is based on the excellent summary in "The Challenge of the Seventeenth Century" in The Historical Jesus Question by Gregory W. Dawes (Westminster: John Knox Press, 2001). Good discussions of individual deist writers can be found in The Seventeenth Century Background and The Eighteenth Century Background by Basil Willey.
  64. Couplet, Philippe; et al., eds. (1687), Confucius Sinarum Philosophus, sive, Scientia Sinensis Latine Exposita [Confucius, Philosopher of the Chinese, or, Chinese Knowledge Explained in Latin], Paris: Daniel Horthemels. (in Latin).
  65. "Windows into China", John Parker, p.25.
  66. "The Eastern origins of Western civilization", John Hobson, p.194-195.
  67. De veritate (Editio tertia), De causis errorum, De religione laici, Parerga. (London 1645).
  68. Bradshaw, Brendan (1983). "The Reformation and the Counter-Reformation". History Today. 33 (11): 42–45.
  69. Brady, Thomas A., Jr. (1991). "People's Religions in Reformation Europe". The Historical Journal. 24 (1): 173–182.
  70. Becker, Sascha O.; Pfaff, Steven; Rubin, Jared. "Causes and Consequences of the Protestant Reformation". Explorations in Economic History.
  71. "Galileo and the Birth of Modern Science". American Heritage of Invention and Technology. 24.
  72. Galileo Galilei - Misjudged astronomer. Christianity Today.
  73. Leviathan. Revised Edition, eds. A.P. Martinich and Brian Battiste. Peterborough, ON: Broadview Press, 2010.
  74. Israel, Jonathan I. Radical Enlightenment. Oxford University Press: 2001.
  75. Champion, Justin (2003). Republican learning: John Toland and the crisis of Christian culture, 1696-1722. pp. 69–86.
  76. 76.0 76.1 Gay, Peter (1968). Deism: An Anthology. Van Nostrand.
  77. "Deism | religious philosophy". Encyclopedia Britannica.
  78. Emerson, R. L. (1968). Heresy, the Social Order, and English Deism. Church History, 37(4), 389-403.
  79. Gay, Peter (1968). Deism: An Anthology. Van Nostrand. p. 143.
  80. Voltaire. W. Dugdale, A Philosophical Dictionary ver 2, 1843, p. 473 sec 1. Retrieved 31 October 2007.
  81. Cronk, Nicholas (2009). The Cambridge Companion to Voltaire. Cambridge University Press. p. 199.
  82. Gildon, Charles. The Deist's Manual. (British Philosophers and Theologians of the 17th & 18th Centuries Series.) London: for A. Roper, 1705; reprint, New York: Garland Publishing, 1977.
  83. Britannica - The Founding Fathers, Deism, and Christianity.
  84. Holmes, David (2006). The Faiths of the Founding Fathers. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, USA.
  85. Michael Corbett and Julia Mitchell, Corbett, Politics and religion in the United States (1999). p. 68.
  86. "Culture Wars in the Early Republic". Common-place.
  87. Gordon-Reed, Annette and Peter S. Onuf. Thomas Jefferson’s Bible Teaching. New York Times.
  88. Gay, Peter (1968). Deism: An Anthology. Van Nostrand. p. 140.
  89. Mossner, Ernest Campbell (1967). "Deism". Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2. Collier-MacMillan.
  90. "ARIS key findings, 2001". Archived from the original on 2005-10-24.
  91. "Largest Religious Groups in the United States of America". Adherents.com.
  92. "ARIS Summary Report, March 2009" (PDF). 2009. Retrieved 2017-03-18.
  93. Grimes, William (2010-04-16). "Antony Flew, Philosopher and Ex-Atheist, Dies at 87". The New York Times.
  94. "Raymond Fontaine's website: From Catholic Priest to Deist With Nature's God". deism.com.
  95. Raphael Lataster (2013). There was no Jesus, there is no God: A Scholarly Examination of the Scientific, Historical, and Philosophical Evidence & Arguments for Monotheism. p. 165. ISBN 1492234419. This one god could be of the deistic or pantheistic sort. Deism might be superior in explaining why God has seemingly left us to our own devices and pantheism could be the more logical option as it fits well with the ontological argument's 'maximally-great entity' and doesn't rely on unproven concepts about 'nothing' (as in 'creation out of nothing'). A mixture of the two, pandeism, could be the most likely God-concept of all.