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From Idealism To Atheism: Theodore Parker And The Projection Theory Of Religion

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Chapter Summary

The furor Feuerbach caused on his native ground was not met with comparable publicity in England. Parker also put Feuerbach's position to work for his concept of "absolute religion". Parker's reception of Feuerbach takes on added value and sheds light on a critique of Transcendentalism that goes beyond the "new school's" rejection of historical Christianity and focuses more on its threat to religion in general. In his sermons on Theism, Atheism and the Popular Theology, Parker discusses in detail the "effects" of Feuerbach's projection theory of religion. Brownson's rejection of Parker's Transcendental idealism also rests upon the contrast between "ontologism" and "psychologism" and establishes an idealistic descent of "egoism" from Fichte's extreme subjective idealism to "autotheism" and atheistic "nihilism".

Keywords: atheism; autotheism; Brownson; Christianity; Feuerbach; idealism; projection theory of religion; religion; Theodore Parker



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