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John Passant

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October 2010



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My interview Razor Sharp 18 February
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp on Tuesday 18 February. (0)

My interview Razor Sharp 11 February 2014
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp this morning. The Royal Commission, car industry and age of entitlement get a lot of the coverage. (0)

Razor Sharp 4 February 2014
Me on 4 February 2014 on Razor Sharp with Sharon Firebrace. (0)

Time for a House Un-Australian Activities Committee?
Tony Abbott thinks the Australian Broadcasting Corporation is Un-Australian. I am looking forward to his government setting up the House Un-Australian Activities Committee. (1)

Make Gina Rinehart work for her dole

Sick kids and paying upfront


Save Medicare

Demonstrate in defence of Medicare at Sydney Town Hall 1 pm Saturday 4 January (0)

Me on Razor Sharp this morning
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace this morning for Razor Sharp. It happens every Tuesday. (0)

I am not surprised
I think we are being unfair to this Abbott ‘no surprises’ Government. I am not surprised. (0)

Send Barnaby to Indonesia
It is a pity that Barnaby Joyce, a man of tact, diplomacy, nuance and subtlety, isn’t going to Indonesia to fix things up. I know I am disappointed that Barnaby is missing out on this great opportunity, and I am sure the Indonesians feel the same way. [Sarcasm alert.] (0)



Marx on religion

‘Religious suffering is, at one and the same time, the expression of real suffering and a protest against real suffering. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people.

‘The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is the demand for their real happiness. To call on them to give up their illusions about their condition is to call on them to give up a condition that requires illusions.’

Karl Marx Introduction to A Contribution to the Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right.

What with all the hoopla abut the canonisation of Mary McKillop today by the Pope, I thought I’d have a look at something Marx wrote long ago.

I’ve always thought opium in this sense was a reference to a pain killer.

But it might help to understand the hold religion has on many people and that it is no good for holier than thou socialists to preach from the sidelines.

Rather we need to understand that religion is a reflection of the world we live in, a reflection of our alienation from ourselves, from our humanity.

What do you think?



Comment from Auntie Rhoberta
Time October 18, 2010 at 8:17 pm

All that is true, I think, but religion might also be a weapon against the morally relativistic claims that ‘might is right’ (exemplified by the ‘TINA’ dogma), or even constitute an attempt to understand the world (social and natural) in its totality where the sciences seem to provide only ever more particularism and knowledge is never final.
Even a world with ‘heart’ would still contain death and grief and loss, presumably — maybe then religion will shade into art.

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