Freethinking and orthodoxy..   Fundamentalism..  
 “We have to remember that fundamentalism is . . . a reaction to the natural 
progress of society. And so when I see fundamentalism surge, I know that what 
is really happening is that the natural progress of society is surging. And 
fundamentalism is reacting to it. I choose to focus on the progress, not the 
reaction.” Reza Aslan


 A great ‘freethought’ listen, on your cell phone or computer..
 Manley P. Hall, an interesting 20th Century mystic freethinker. A lifelong 
lecturer he gave a biographical lecture presentation on 17th Century William 
Penn’s free thought ‘Holy Experiment’. Penn’s freethinking venture became an 
early founding of constitutional government and subsequently the State of 
 Manly P. Hall - William Penn, the Quaker, and His Holy Experiment

 . .


 "Whitman believed in the Inner Light. In 1890, he told Horace Traubel, who 
recorded Whitman's conversations from 1888 until the poet's death, that he 
subscribed to Hicks's views of spirituality."


 Anecdotes about Elias Hicks   by Walt Whitman 
 November Boughs essay "Elias Hicks" 1888



 Elias Hicks: He preached that people could experience salvation without the 
aid of ordained clergy. God dwells within every person, he explained, and 
reveals truths to each one by means of the Inner Light. Employing their free 
will, people could choose salvation by submitting to the will of God revealed 
to them, or they could choose sin by rejecting God's will to follow their 
"independent will" (Hicks 336).
 From 1779 through 1829, the Quaker minister journeyed more than forty thousand 
miles to locations primarily in the Northeast; but he also made trips to 
Virginia (1797, 1801, 1819, 1828), to the northern shore of Lake Ontario, 
Canada (1803, 1810), and to Richmond, Indiana (1828).
 An Orthodox Indictment of L. Mott
This gives very interesting insight.  A fun read as written in a voice of 
'tongue in cheek'.

 Reguler, The Orthodox indictment of spiritual regeneration movement: 
 The case of  L Mott.


 .. ..

 “And this power flowed through him -- he became its agent -- whenever he put 
himself in a position to receive it. It had drawn him also to the Quakers of 
New Bedford, who were having a schism and revival in 1828. He visited them 
often, especially Mary Rotch. “What is this Inner Light?” he asked her. “It is 
not a thing to be talked about,” she replied. But he drew her out, and she said 
she had been driven inward, in these years of the Quaker Schism,”  The Life of 
Emerson, Brooks. 


 .. ..


 Creed..a set of beliefs or aims that guide someone's actions,
 a brief authoritative formula of religious belief.
 a creed is a set of beliefs, principles, or opinions that strongly influence 
the way people live or work
 creed is a religion.

 any system, doctrine, or formula of religious belief, as of a denomination. 
any system or codification of belief or of opinion. 
 an authoritative, formulated statement of the chief articles of belief, as the 
Apostles' Creed, the Nicene Creed, or the Athanasian Creed.

 . . /
 “In the 18th and 19th century, many thinkers regarded as freethinkers were 
deists, arguing that the nature of God
 can only be known from a study of nature rather than from religious 
‘revelation’. In the 18th century, "deism" was as much of a 'dirty word' as 
"atheism", and deists were often stigmatized as either atheists or at least as 
freethinkers by their Christian opponents.[13][14] Deists today regard 
themselves as freethinkers, but are now arguably less prominent in the 
freethought movement than atheists.”

 . .
 W. E. Channing, in Channing’s sequence of time in the coming on of Emerson and 
others, bringing a closure to Puritanism in New England..

 “The divine attributes,” Channing writes, “are first developed in ourselves 
and hence transferred to our Creator. The idea of God, sublime and awful as it 
is, is the idea of our own spiritual nature, purified and enlarged to 

“When Channing whistled, if his friends had only known it, that was the end of 
Calvinism for Boston.”  The Life of Emerson, Brooks.

 . .  
 Freethought is the philosophy that man rules his own destiny, rejecting the 
notion that there is any kind of divine intervention in life. Belief centers on 
the idea that nature and Natural Law guide mankind and that the use of reason, 
epistemology, and science are the means by which life is validated. 

 Freethought came to Wisconsin with the massive influx of German immigrants in 
the 1850s, particularly those known as "Forty-eighters" who had fled autocratic 
German states after the failed revolts of 1848.


 Freethinkers refused to accept political absolutism and the authority of a 
church, religion, or its supposedly inspired scripture. They insisted on the 
freedom to form religious opinions on the basis of intellectual reasoning 
powers and not on blind, unquestioned faith. Freethinking became fashionable in 
the German state of Prussia during the reign of Frederick the Great, who ruled 
from 1740-53, within a period known as the "Age of Reason."   
 "Freethinkers" Of the Early Texas..
 Freethought, Vs. the true believer..  

 true believer. noun. One who is deeply, sometimes fanatically devoted to a 
cause, organization, or person: “a band of true believers bonded together 
against all those who did not agree with them” ( Theodore Draper )

 : a person who professes absolute belief in something
 : a zealous supporter of a particular cause

 ..true believers who fought the good fight even when it was out of fashion.'s impossible to argue with those true believers, as they think any 
counterevidence, is proof of an evil conspiracy.


 . .

 “On the other hand, according to Bertrand Russell, atheists and/or agnostics 
are not necessarily freethinkers. As an example, he mentions Stalin, whom he compares to a "pope":   what I am concerned with is the doctrine 
of the modern Communistic Party, and of the Russian Government to which it owes 
allegiance. According to this doctrine, the world develops on the lines of a 
Plan called Dialectical Materialism, first discovered by Karl 
Marx, embodied in the practice of a 
great state by Lenin, and now 
expounded from day to day by a Church of which Stalin is the Pope. […] Free 
discussion is to be prevented wherever the power to do so exists; […] If this 
doctrine and this organization prevail, free inquiry will become as impossible 
as it was in the middle ages, and the world will relapse into bigotry and 
 — Bertrand Russell, The Value of Free Thought. How to Become a Truth-Seeker 
and Break the Chains of Mental Slavery
 The “kidnapped” monument to German freethinkers in the Texas hill country

 . .

 "What makes a freethinker is not his beliefs but the way in which he holds 
them. If he holds them because his elders told him they were true when he was 
young, or if he holds them because if he did not he would be unhappy, his 
thought is not free; but if he holds them because, after careful thought he 
finds a balance of evidence in their favour, then his thought is free, however 
odd his conclusions may seem."
 "The person who is free in any respect is free from something; what is the 
free thinker free from? To be worthy of the name, he must be free of two 
things: the force of tradition, and the tyranny of his own passions. No one is 
completely free from either, but in the measure of a man's emancipation he 
deserves to be called a free thinker."
 — Bertrand Russell, The Value of Free Thought. How to Become a Truth-Seeker 
and Break the Chains of Mental Slavery, from the first paragraph



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