Every rational and educated person is supposed to know that that there exists no such thing as God or the soul, because there is no hard scientific proof of their existence, and that everything that does exist reduces to so much physical matter in motion. But this scientifically untestable and unverifiable ontology, which reduces all being to the laws of physics, itself reduces to an underlying substrate of politics. Find out how in my latest article at the excellent Thermidor Magazine.

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3 thoughts on “Materialism, Truth, and Power

  1. Another tour de force.

    I have often noticed that secularists have a deep superstition toward religious/spiritual ideas and people. That is people in daily life and heavy hitters like, say, Bertrand Russel.
    I am reminded of his Essay, ‘Mysticism and Logic’, Where if I remember right his goal was by ‘will of power’ to root out all subjectivity from objectivity. Science being the proper telos of any system of thought or truth.

    This no doubt limits these thinkers from access to other truth, typically functioning as a priori barriers to ‘superstition’. This seems to be the continuous struggle of Western thought since modernity. Yet the mystical, or metaphysical (or even simply the rational) intuition always seems to rise against the shortcomings of monist materialism. When it gets out of hand, like Hegel, a counterinsurgency of radical Empiricism manifests to keep the gods at bay. This is a particularly Anglo Saxon disposition.

    This is not a defense of Hegel, I do not sufficiently grasp him to assent or dissent. More to place him ironically in the bantering dialectic of Reason and Empiricism. However effective he was. he represented, as you point out, an optimistic view of the evolution of spirit whose telos is the perfection of reason. Those at war with God found this too close to the old world of faith and religion though and so brought the conversation back to a discussion of whether we can or cannot know that our hand is really before our face.

    Thanks again, you have given me energy to finish my next.

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  2. Glad to hear I’ve energized you.

    Re: Anglos and positivism/empiricism: I’ve noticed this too. Anglos have this tendency to take the war against God and the ultimate to the point where any non-atomistic, non-reductionist social theory or philosophy strikes them as offensive and profoundly threatening, even something like Hegel that’s already 3/4 of the way down the road to materialism, or for that matter even sociological theories that are 100% secular and materialist, but consider society holistically, and so seem to have an intolerable whiff of religion about them.

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