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Reversal – Beyond the clever machine

In psychoanalytic theory, reversal is a Freudian defense mechanism. A broader idea than turning against the self, reversal takes place when the ego converts an instinctual impulse into behavior appearing as its opposite. The miser becomes a philanthropist, the pervert … Continue reading


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Revelation and revealed knowledge – Can we separate the wheat from the chaff?

That was a revelation! When we hear someone say this in daily life, we usually take it to mean that they are inspired, see an issue in a new light or learn something that deepens their understanding. Revelation has become … Continue reading


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Representation – A subtle power for good or ill

In the literary and artistic sense, representation refers to depicting a psychological, social, natural, political or spiritual idea or condition through language, music, visual art, multimedia, CGI or dance. In the sciences, abstract ideas like numbers and their interrelationships are represented … Continue reading


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Religion – As diverse as peoples of the Earth?

Embed from Getty Images What is religion? With so many different religions out there can we come up with a concise or, for that matter, comprehensive definition? It seems not. In fact, there are many different definitions of religion in … Continue reading


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The Belief in Reincarnation – Man-Made Theory or Sacred Truth?

Also called metempsychosis and transmigration, reincarnation is a man-made theory usually presented as fact or sacred law by believers. Elements of the theory can be found in diverse religions and philosophies, including ancient Greek, Egyptian, Hindu, Buddhist, Taoist, Jain, African … Continue reading


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Reification – Are things always as they seem?

Reification is a sociological, philosophical and literary concept concerning language and symbolization.¹ For Marxist, Weberian and postmodern sociologists, reification also involves social power. It occurs whenever ideas, concepts or theories are falsely assumed to accurately represent some entity or thing. … Continue reading


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Reductio ad absurdum – An old school way of saying “take the flipside” or “take it to the limit”

Reductio ad absurdum [Latin: “reduce to the absurd”] is a method of argumentation said to prove a statement to be true by demonstrating the contradiction, absurdity and therefore impossibility that would result if it were untrue or prove a statement to … Continue reading


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Reason, Revelation, Inspiration and Illumination – A Matter of Character or Degree?

Embed from Getty Images In both philosophy and theology a distinction is often made between knowledge obtained through reason and knowledge obtained through revelation Many learned and pious discussions follow from this way of looking at things. But I believe … Continue reading


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Rastafarianism – The “evil weed” becomes “incense for the flowers”

Rastafarianism is a Jamaican religious movement. Some of its adherents see blacks as the chosen people and Haile Selassie (1891-1975), the former Emperor of Ethiopia, is believed to be God, Jesus Christ or a manifestation of God (Jah from the Hebrew … Continue reading