The Essence of Christianity

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9780061300110: The Essence of Christianity

Book may have numerous typos, missing text, images, or index. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. 1881. Excerpt: ... CHAPTER XXVI. THE CONTRADICTION OF FAITH AND LOVE. The Sacraments are a sensible presentation of that contradiction of idealism and materialism, of subjectivism and objectivism, which belongs to the inmost nature of religion. But the sacraments are nothing without Faith and Love. Hence the contradiction in the sacraments carries us back to the primary contradiction of Faith and Love. The essence of religion, its latent nature, is the identify of the divine being with the human; but the form of religion, or its apparent, conscious nature, is the distinction between them. God is the human being; but he presents himself to the religious consciousness as a distinct being. Now, that which reveals the basis, the hidden essence of religion, is Love; that which constitutes its conscious form is Faith. Love identifies man with God and God with man, consequently it identifies man with man; faith separates God from man, consequently it separates man from man, for God is nothing else than the idea of the species invested with a mystical form,--the separation of God from man is therefore the separation of man from man, the unloosening of the social bond. By faith religion places itself in contradiction with morality, with reason, with the unsophisticated sense of truth in man; by love, it opposes itself again to this contradiction. Faith isolates God, it makes him a particular, distinct being: love universalises; it makes God a common being, the love of whom is one with the love of man. Faith produces in man an inward disunion, a disunion with himself, and by consequence an outward disunion also; but love heals the wounds which are made by faith in the heart of man. Faith makes belief in its God a law: love is freedom,--it condemns not even the atheist, because it is itself atheistic, itself den...

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About the Author:

Ludwig Feuerbach (1804-1872) was a highly respected nineteenth-century philosopher who focused on the study of post-Hegelian philosophy, idealism, naturalism, materialism, and positivism. Feuerbach’s book, The Essence of Christianity, is noted as an influential atheist text, and helped inspire the work of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. Feuerbach was educated at the University of Berlin.

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Ludwig Feuerbach
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Ludwig Feuerbach
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