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Superstition In All Ages (1732)
Common Sense

written by "Holbach, Paul Henri Thiry, baron d', 1723-1789"
...sing the phantom to vanish which they had taken so much trouble to conjure up. Dante, in his poem of Paradise, relates that the Divinity appeared to him under the figure of three circles, which formed an iris, whose bright colors arose from each other; but having wished to retain its brilliant light, the poet saw only his own face. In worshiping God, man adores himself. XLVIII.—CONTINUATION. The slightest reflection suffices to prove to us that God can not have any of the human qualities, virtues, or perfections. Our virtues and our perfections are the results of our temperament modified. Has God a temperament like ours? Our good qualities are our habits relative to the beings in whose society we live. God, according to you, is a solitary being. God has no one like Him; He does not live in society; He has no need of any one; He enjoys a happiness which nothing can alter. Admit, then, upon your own principles, that God can not possess what we call virtues, and that man can not be virtuous in regard to Him. XLIX.—IT IS ABSURD TO SAY THAT THE HUMAN RACE IS THE OBJECT AND THE END OF CREATION. Man, charmed with his own merits, imagines that it is but his own kind that God proposed as the object and the end in the formation of the universe. Upon what is this so flattering opinion based? It is, we are told, upon this: that man is the only being endowed with an intelligence which enables him to know the Divine nature, and to render to it homage worthy of it. We are assured that God created the world for His own glory, and that the human race was included in His plan, in order that He might have somebody to admire and glorify Him in His works. But by these intentions has not God visibly missed His end? 1. According to you, it would always be impossible for man to know his God, and he would be kept in the most invincible ignorance of the Divine essence. 2. A being who has no equals...

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