ian.ellis-jones's blog

Is Buddhism Atheistic?

It is often said, especially by Buddhists, that Buddhism is ‘atheistic’ or ‘nontheistic’. Often this is said in order to promote Buddhism as a sensible religious or spiritual alternative to the monotheistic religions such as Christianity, Judaism and Islam with which many Westerners have become disillusioned.

The Illusory Mind

How well do you know your ‘self’? Well enough to know that your ‘self’ does not exist? Please read on.

More and more psychologists, psychotherapists and counsellors are drawing upon the insights of Buddhism to better understand the nature and activities of the human mind. In my own therapeutic practice, I apply, quite eclectically and unashamedly, ideas and teachings from a number of different traditions, both Eastern and Western. A pragmatists, all I am interested in is results---and changed lives.

The Problem with Organized Religion

'Religion is a monumental chapter in the history of human egotism.'--William James.

The following comes from the great spiritual philosopher Jiddu Krishnamurti:

God is Not Above Logic

I have engaged in some prominent debates with Sydney Anglican (read Episcopalian, if you're American or Scottish) bishops and the like at various universities over the years on such important topics as the existence of God and whether Jesus physically rose from the dead. One of the bishops I debated in the Great Hall of the University of Sydney was Dr Glenn Davies who is now the Anglican Archbishop of Sydney. At least I found him to be a real gentleman.

Problems with Traditional Theism: Five Fallacious Arguments for the Existence of God Propounded by Dr William Lane Craig

‘Better believe in no God than to believe in a cruel God, a tribal God, a sectarian God. Belief in God is one of the most dangerous beliefs a man can cherish.’ -- The Rev Dr Harry Emerson Fosdick, Baptist minister, author and professor of practical theology at Union Theological Seminary, New York (regarded by The Rev Dr Martin Luther King, Jr as ‘the greatest preacher of [the 20th] century' (Papers 4:536)).

'Deep within the heart of every evangelist lies the wreck of a car salesman.' -- H L Mencken, author, journalist, satirist and scholar of American English.

Religion Without Supernaturalism

Can there be religion without supernaturalism and superstition? Of course. Surely you’ve heard of religious naturalism? Now, naturalism takes various forms including but not limited to cosmological naturalism, methodological naturalism, ethical naturalism, scientistic naturalism, social naturalism, and religious naturalism. I am only concerned with the latter here.

The American philosopher and theologian Jerome A Stone offers the following definition of religious naturalism:

Why Unitarianism?

I am proud to be a Unitarian minister. That means I am also a heretic, and I am proud to be that too. By the way, the word 'heretic' means one who chooses to think differently. We need more heretics in the world---more people who are prepared to think differently. Bring it on.

There are lots of Unitarian jokes. For example, ‘Unitarians believe in one God … at the most!’ Also, ‘Unitarians can believe in any number of gods, except three.’ Of course, you can be a Unitarian without believing in a god at all.

The Transformative Power of Myth in Our Lives

‘[A] mythology is a control system, on the one hand framing its community to accord with an intuited order of nature and, on the other hand, by means of its symbolic pedagogic rites, conducting individuals through the ineluctable psychophysiological stages of transformation of a human lifetime -- birth, childhood and adolescence, age, old age, and the release of death -- in unbroken accord simultaneously with the requirements of this world and the rapture of participation in a manner of being beyond time.’ --Joseph Campbell.

The Pagan Roots and Origins of Christmas

A couple of years ago [viz on 10 December 2012] I spoke on Sydney's Radio Skid Row 88.9 FM on the pagan roots and origins of Christmas. The purpose of this present article is to share some of what I said on the radio.

How to be Free of the Past--or Why Analysis Doesn’t Work

So, you want to be free of the past? Really? If so, you can be, provided you really want freedom and are prepared to go to any length to get it.

Listen to these words from the Indian spiritual philosopher J. Krishnamurti:


Subscribe to RSS - ian.ellis-jones's blog