Tuesday, August 20, 2013

boss's boss's boss's ...

Guy on radio: Coming up, are kids hardwired to believe in God?

Me (thinking): Well, we are hardwired with a notion of authority, and we are hardwired with a generative notion of infinity. So we can imagine our boss's boss's boss's ....[on and on indefinitely] boss. Is that really all it is?


Unknown said...

One question that came to my mind: are there any significant polytheistic traditions which don't have a "chief of pantheon"-type figure, along the lines of Amaterasu, Odin, or Zeus?

(The Hindu system confuses me, because I'm never sure whether Brahman is a deity or just the non-theistic (although not really materialistic) nature of reality, and I'm not sure whether Brahma/Vishnu/Shiva are supposed to be different aspects of the same being or separate deities.)

Rob Helpy-Chalk said...

That's a really good question, unknown, and I wish I knew the answer.

Individuating deities in Hinduism is harder than individuating particles in quantum mechanics. I remember reading somewhere that the answer to the question "Is Hinduism monotheistic, polytheistic or atheistic" is "Yes."