Graham Harman posted this snippet from Meillassoux’s L’inexistence divine, regarding atheism:

“Atheism is a strategy of the besieged. One begins by admitting that the territory of immanence is just as religion describes it, then one declares that this territory is the only one that exists, and finally one invents every possible way of rendering it livable despite that fact.”

I have nothing to say about this, really, other than that I find it to be probably the single best metaphor for atheism that I’ve ever encountered.

Posted on September 22, 2010, in Speculative Realism and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Yes. Atheism unfortunately for itself *is a form of belief, though perhaps not in the corny sense fundamentalists ascribe to “belief.” Meillassoux seems to be getting at the attitude rather than the explicit content, a move I like a lot. The difference in attitude would be the distinction between atheism and non-theism (which is how Buddhists frequently describe themselves). BTW thanks for your comments on Levi’s post.

  2. Yeah, atheism can’t but be a form of belief. Even if it can’t properly be called a variant of theism (atheism is not a theism, ha!), I think in some forms it does go as far as belief in God, though not in God’s existence – i.e., belief that if there is a god then that god can only be that which atheism rejects. So, one might also say (following Meillassoux again) that atheism admits that the territory of transcendence is just as described by religion (or at least religion as appropriated by atheism) and that it is exactly this which does NOT exist.

    Thanks for your posts as well. I’ve been enjoying the series on Buddhism & OOO, as well as the job market advice.

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