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Deist   Listen
noun
Deist  n.  One who believes in the existence of a God, but denies revealed religion; a freethinker. Note: A deist, as denying a revelation, is opposed to a Christian; as, opposed to the denier of a God, whether atheist or pantheist, a deist is generally denominated theist.
Synonyms: See Infidel.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Deist" Quotes from Famous Books



... in this new direction, Darwin soon noticed that a good deal was occurring in an entirely unmystical and even unmeaning way of which the older speculative Deist-Evolutionists had taken little or no account. Nowadays, when we are turning in weary disgust and disillusion from Neo-Darwinism and Mechanism to Vitalism and Creative Evolution, it is difficult to imagine how this new departure of Darwin's could possibly ...
— Back to Methuselah • George Bernard Shaw

... Si deist et jel tesmoignasse Que ce est la dame qui passe Totes celes qui sont vivanz Si con li funs passe les vanz Qui vante en ...
— Mont-Saint-Michel and Chartres • Henry Adams

... in the manner of their promulgation. Reason tries historical religion by the standard furnished by natural religion, and distinguishes actual from asserted revelation by the harmony of its contents with reason: the deist believes in the Bible because of the reasonableness of its teachings; he does not hold these teachings true because they are found in the Bible. If a positive religion contains less than natural religion it is incomplete; if it contains more it is tyrannical, ...
— History Of Modern Philosophy - From Nicolas of Cusa to the Present Time • Richard Falckenberg

... the words, "It is not wonderful that he only believed in the existence of matter, for all the spirit in the world was enclosed in his own body. No one but a king would venture on such a sally in a funeral oration. However, Frederick the Great was a Deist and not an Atheist; but that is of little consequence, since he never allowed the belief in a God to influence his actions in the slightest degree. Some say that an Atheist who ponders over the possible existence of a ...
— The Memoires of Casanova, Complete • Jacques Casanova de Seingalt

... of the Christian Religion. Now first translated from the French of Frret, but supposed to be written by Baron Holbach, author of the System of Nature, Christianity Unveiled, Common Sense, Universal Morality, Natural Morality. R. Carlile, The Deist, etc., Vol. II, 1819, etc. (8vo, pp. 185.) ...
— Baron d'Holbach - A Study of Eighteenth Century Radicalism in France • Max Pearson Cushing

... on Christianity, which I have not forgotten. On the contrary, it is because I have reflected on it, that I find much more time necessary for it than I can at present dispose of. I have a view of the subject which ought to displease neither the rational Christian nor Deist, and would reconcile many to a character they have too hastily rejected. I do not know that it would reconcile the genus irritabile vatum, who are all in arms against me. Their hostility is on too interesting ground to ...
— Memoir, Correspondence, And Miscellanies, From The Papers Of Thomas Jefferson - Volume I • Thomas Jefferson

... unlike Russell, was in theory not averse to Republicanism, but the accusations are false as to his being a sceptic or a deist, as his own dying apology attests. He says: "God will not suffer this land, where the Gospel has of late flourished more than in any part of the world, to become a slave of the world. He will not suffer it to ...
— Excellent Women • Various

... fact too frequently is that he swallowed luxuries beyond his means. A gentleman asked a child who made him. The answer was: "God made me so long—measuring the length of a baby—and I growed the rest." The mistake of the little deist in leaving out the God of his growth illustrates a conviction: We are what ...
— Hidden Treasures - Why Some Succeed While Others Fail • Harry A. Lewis

... advocating a universal religion in the place of Christianity. But this by no means follows. The idea is surely that Masons should be men adhering to that law of right and wrong common to all religious faiths. Craft Masonry may thus be described as Deist in character, but not in the accepted sense of the word which implies the rejection of Christian doctrines. If Freemasonry had been Deist in this sense might we not expect to find some connexion between the founders of ...
— Secret Societies And Subversive Movements • Nesta H. Webster

... consequent privileges of a Christian. The title implies no more than a sort of formal, general assent to Christianity in the gross, and a degree of morality in practice, but little if at all superior to that for which we look in a good Deist, Mussulman, or Hindoo. ...
— A Practical View of the Prevailing Religious System of Professed Christians, in the Middle and Higher Classes in this Country, Contrasted with Real Christianity. • William Wilberforce

... balance of argument has in the past been usually somewhat on the side of the apologists; but the argumentative victory has seldom if ever been so decisive as quite to account for the comparatively undisturbed continuity of the religious life. It was in the height of the Deist controversy that Wesley and Whitfield began to preach, and they made more converts by appealing to the emotions than probably Butler did by appealing ...
— The Gospels in the Second Century - An Examination of the Critical Part of a Work - Entitled 'Supernatural Religion' • William Sanday

... perpetuall death in his awin death. For thow madest the falt, and he suffered the pane, and that for the luif he had to thee, befoir ever thow wast borne, when thow haddest done neither good nor evill. Now, since he hath payed thy debt, thow deist nott: no, thow canst nott, bot shouldest have bene damned, yf his death war not.[67] Bot since he was punished for thee, thow shalt not be punished. Fynallie, he hath delivered thee from thye condemnatioun, and desyrith nought of thee, but that thow shouldest ...
— The Works of John Knox, Vol. 1 (of 6) • John Knox

... everywhere in the providence of God; and if the doctrine of the atonement were stricken from the scheme of Christianity, the injustice which is supposed to attend it would still continue to overhang and cloud the moral government of God. And hence, if the deist or the Socinian would escape from this frightful spectre of his own imagination, he must bury himself in the most profound depths and most cheerless ...
— A Theodicy, or, Vindication of the Divine Glory • Albert Taylor Bledsoe

... intellectual definition by means of poetry, music, vestments and architecture, also producing religious ecstacy by physical expedients, such as fasts and vigils, in which case he is denounced as a Ritualist. Or he may be either a Unitarian Deist like Voltaire or Tom Paine, or the more modern sort of Anglican Theosophist to whom the Holy Ghost is the Elan Vital of Bergson, and the Father and Son are an expression of the fact that our functions and aspects are manifold, and that we are all sons and all either potential or actual parents, ...
— Androcles and the Lion • George Bernard Shaw

... creed of what is called "muscular Christianity," and a very fine specimen of it too. A tall stout man with broad shoulders, and that division of lower limb which intervenes between the knee and the ankle powerfully developed. He would have knocked down a deist as soon as looked at him. It is told by the Sieur de Joinville, in his Memoir of Louis, the sainted king, that an assembly of divines and theologians convened the Jews of an Oriental city for the purpose of arguing with ...
— Kenelm Chillingly, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... pantheist, polytheist; idolator. schismatic; sectary, sectarian, sectarist^; seceder, separatist, recusant, dissenter; nonconformist, nonjuror^. bigot &c (obstinacy) 606; fanatic, abdal^, iconoclast. latitudinarian, Deist, Theist, Unitarian; positivist, materialist; Homoiousian^, Homoousian^, limitarian^, theosophist, ubiquitarian^; skeptic &c 989. Protestant; Huguenot; orthodox dissenter, Congregationalist, Independent; Episcopalian, Presbyterian; Lutheran, Calvinist, Methodist, ...
— Roget's Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases: Body • Roget

... of thought cannot be found in Diderot's writings, but they are pregnant with ideas. He is deist, pantheist, atheist; he is a materialist—one, however, who conceives matter not as inert, but quick with force. He is edifying and sincere in his morality; and presently his morals become the doctrines of an anarchical licence. All the ideas ...
— A History of French Literature - Short Histories of the Literatures of the World: II. • Edward Dowden

... notion of Descartes the great deist John Toland, whose ashes lie unmarked in Putney Churchyard, strenuously contended. He affirmed motion to be an inherent attribute of matter—that no portion of matter was at rest, and that even the most quiescent solids were animated by a motion of their ultimate particles. The success of his contention, ...
— Fragments of science, V. 1-2 • John Tyndall

... less reverence to the patriarch than is quite seemly, there is an indecision, if not in his conclusion, at least in his mode of deducing it, that shows an apt inclination to cut the knot, and solve the objection of the Deist, by alleging, that belief in the Christian religion is an ...
— The Dramatic Works of John Dryden Vol. I. - With a Life of the Author • Sir Walter Scott

... way of atonement for youthful vituperation (he called him "a ragamuffin deist") of Tom Paine, exhumed his bones from their first resting-place at New Rochelle, and brought them to Liverpool on his return to England in 1819. They were preserved by Cobbett at Normanby, Farnham, till his death in 1835, but were ...
— The Works of Lord Byron, Vol. 7. - Poetry • George Gordon Byron

... crude notions about women are cited with special acceptance.[335] Cowper was probably thinking of the Savoyard Vicar when he wrote the energetic lines in the Task, beginning "Haste now, philosopher, and set him free," scornfully defying the deist to rescue apostate man.[336] Nor should we omit what was counted so important a book in its day as Godwin's Enquiry concerning Political Justice (1793). It is perhaps more French in its spirit than any other ...
— Rousseau - Volumes I. and II. • John Morley

... can only create life—not soul. Years ago I was a freethinker, now my discoveries have made me a deist; for I found that my cells, living as they were, and possessing undoubted parietal circulation, were not germs; and though they might cluster into a bulk like this, as bubbles do to form froth, to evolve an animal ...
— Stories by American Authors, Volume 8 • Various

... was the day also for the most egregious credulity and the most mystical superstitions,—the day in which magnetism and magic found converts amongst the disciples of Diderot; when prophecies were current in every mouth; when the salon of a philosophical deist was converted into an Heraclea, in which necromancy professed to conjure up the shadows of the dead; when the Crosier and the Book were ridiculed, and Mesmer and Cagliostro were believed. In that Heliacal Rising, heralding the new sun before ...
— Zanoni • Edward Bulwer Lytton

... and condemn that loose latitudinarian tenet and opinion of opening the door of communion with the church in her judicative capacity, or sealing ordinances, unto the grossly ignorant, loose, careless, profane and scandalous: and to the anti-christian deist, blasphemous heretic, or any who maintain doctrines, principles and opinions contrary to, and eversive of the cardinal and fundamental doctrines of Christianity, or such principles and practices as oppose, obscure ...
— Act, Declaration, & Testimony for the Whole of our Covenanted Reformation, as Attained to, and Established in Britain and Ireland; Particularly Betwixt the Years 1638 and 1649, Inclusive • The Reformed Presbytery

... phenomena of evil {89} by God's supposed absence from the world is defensible; we do say that the belief in His all-encompassing nearness makes those phenomena even more difficult of explanation than they were before. The devout deist could always comfort himself with the thought that, however mysterious God's standing afar off might be, by and by, when He drew nigh again, He would deal out even-handed justice to all; but such comfort is not open to those who explicitly deny God's remoteness, but on the contrary ...
— Problems of Immanence - Studies Critical and Constructive • J. Warschauer

... immeasurable space which separates the two cultes, whilst the contrast, so far as the eternal records of nature, impressed upon and read in the page of creation, are involved, would be all in favour of the Moslemite deist, and pity and folly would be mingled with his ideas when appreciating the ...
— Travels in the Great Desert of Sahara, in the Years of 1845 and 1846 • James Richardson

... profit of turning holy If not for God's, for your own sake solely, —God forbid I should find you ridiculous! Deduce from this lecture all that eases you, Nay, call yourselves, if the calling pleases you, "Christians,"—abhor the deist's pravity,— Go on, you shall no more move my gravity Than, when I see boys ride a-cockhorse, I find it in my heart to embarrass them By hinting that their stick's a mock horse, And they really carry what they say ...
— Browning's England - A Study in English Influences in Browning • Helen Archibald Clarke

... Supreme God. Their Jupiter, the Zeus of the Greeks, the Jehovah of the Phoenicians, was always considered as the master of the secondary gods. This great truth can not be too forcibly inculcated." Voltaire was a Deist. ...
— The Christian Foundation, February, 1880

... now just passed my twenty-first year; and it may be well to let you know the then state of my mind with regard to my principles and morals. My parents had brought me through my childhood piously in the dissenting way, but now I had become a thorough Deist. My arguments had perverted some others, but as each of these persons had afterwards wronged me greatly without the least compunction, and as my own conduct towards others had given me great trouble, I began to suspect that this doctrine, ...
— The World's Greatest Books, Vol IX. • Edited by Arthur Mee and J.A. Hammerton

... head and these points of the face in all the Encyclopedists, in the orators of the Gironde, in the men of a period when religious ideas were almost dead, men who called themselves deists and were atheists. The deist is an atheist lucky ...
— Ursula • Honore de Balzac

... most startling revelation he owed to Robespierre's wisdom was that of the crimes and infamies of atheism. Gamelin had never denied the existence of God; he was a deist and believed in a Providence that watches over mankind; but, admitting that he could form only a very vague conception of the Supreme Being and deeply attached to the principle of freedom of conscience, he was quite ready to allow that right-thinking ...
— The Gods are Athirst • Anatole France

... "Bangorian controversy"; and Balguy, under the nom de plume of Silvius, began his career of authorship by taking the side of Hoadley in this controversy against some of his High Church opponents. [v.03 p.0256] In 1726 he published A letter to a Deist concerning the Beauty and Excellency of Moral Virtue, and the Support and Improvement which it receives from the Christian Religion, chiefly designed to show that, while a love of virtue for its own sake is the highest ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 3, Part 1, Slice 2 - "Baconthorpe" to "Bankruptcy" • Various

... is this to the pure and simple profession of Deism! The true deist has but one Deity; and his religion consists in contemplating the power, wisdom, and benignity of the Deity in his works, and in endeavouring to imitate him in every thing ...
— The Writings Of Thomas Paine, Complete - With Index to Volumes I - IV • Thomas Paine

... power and inexhaustible beneficence, mighty to devise and direct the universe, with knowledge reaching to the farthest confines of space, with ear to listen to the prayer of His lowest creatures. Her belief stopped short even of the Deist's faith in an Almighty Will. She saw in creation nothing but the inevitable development of material laws; and it seemed to her that there was quite as much hope of a heavenly world after death for the infusoria in the pool as for man in ...
— Phantom Fortune, A Novel • M. E. Braddon

... Printing dear, Or tire Ned Ward, who writes six Books a-year. Such vicious Nonsense, Impudence, and Spite, Wou'd make a Hermit, or a Father write. Tho' Julian rul'd the World, and held no more Than deist Gildon taught, or Toland swore, Good Greg'ry[48] prov'd him execrably bad, And scourg'd his Soul, with drunken Reason mad. Much longer, Pope restrain'd his awful hand, Wept o'er poor Niniveh, and her dull band, 'Till Fools like Weeds rose up, and choak'd the Land. Long, long he slumber'd ...
— An Essay on Satire, Particularly on the Dunciad • Walter Harte



Words linked to "Deist" :   nonreligious person, deism, deistic



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