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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Egotheism or autotheism is the deification or worship of the self.[1][2][3] Critics of Johann Gottlieb Fichte and Ralph Waldo Emerson used the terms to label their transcendental philosophy.[4][5][6][7] Autolatry is another synonym which was used to label the ideology of Max Stirner.[8][9][10][11]

Ancient religions[edit]

Several Egyptian kings declared themselves gods during their reign.[12] Identification of the atman (self) with Brahman is a tenet of some sects of Hinduism. In Jainism, one who extinguishes all of their karmas becomes a tirthankara with godlike knowledge and powers.[13] The proto protestant Adamites[14] believed in self deification.[15]

Modern religions[edit]

Early individuals who declared themselves to be gods include the English prophet John Robins and Danilo Filipov, who led a heterodox Quaker cult in Russia.[16][17] Henry VIII was accused of autolatry after becoming a Protestant and establishing Anglicanism.[18][19][20] After he reconverted to Protestantism, Jean-Jacques Rousseau advocated civil religion which was accused of inspiring self worship amongst citizenry.[21][22][23][24][25]

Founder of North Korea Kim Il Sung instituted worship of himself amongst the citizens and it is considered the only country to deify its ruler with citizens bowing to his statues.[26][27][28][29] After his death he was declared 'Eternal President' by the North Korean authorities. Contemporary figures who have professed themselves to be deities include Father Divine and Jim Jones.[30] Mormonism is a religion that teaches self-deification.[31]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Egotheism definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary".
  2. ^ "Definition of AUTOTHEISM".
  3. ^ "Autolatry definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary".
  4. ^ Versluis, Arthur (September 16, 1993). American Transcendentalism and Asian Religions. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-536037-0 – via Google Books.
  5. ^ "The Contemporary Review". A. Strahan. October 2, 1868 – via Google Books.
  6. ^ Hurth, Elisabeth (August 30, 2007). Between Faith and Unbelief: American Transcendentalists and the Challenge of Atheism. BRILL. ISBN 9789047421269 – via Google Books.
  7. ^ Woodress, James Leslie (October 3, 2004). "American Literary Scholarship". Duke University Press – via Google Books.
  8. ^ Murray, James Augustus Henry (1888). "A New English Dictionary on Historical Principles".
  9. ^ "Lippincott's Monthly Magazine". 1868.
  10. ^ Janet, Paul (October 5, 1866). "The Materialism of the Present Day: A Critique of Dr. Büchner's System". H. Baillière – via Google Books.
  11. ^ Methodist Episcopal Church (1865). The Methodist Quarterly Review. American periodical series, 1800-1850. G. Lane and P.P. Sanford. p. 32. Retrieved 2023-02-19.
  12. ^ Sabbahy, Lisa K. (April 24, 2019). All Things Ancient Egypt: An Encyclopedia of the Ancient Egyptian World [2 volumes]. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 9781440855139 – via Google Books.
  13. ^ Orr, Norman (January 29, 2021). Embracing Biological Humanism: Abandoning the Idea of God. Archway Publishing. ISBN 9781480898684 – via Google Books.
  14. ^ Smith, V.S. (2008). Clean: A History of Personal Hygiene and Purity. Clean: A History of Personal Hygiene and Purity. Oxford University Press. p. 271. ISBN 978-0-19-953208-7. Retrieved 2023-06-11.
  15. ^ Tricoire, D.; Laborie, L. (2022). Apocalypse Now: Connected Histories of Eschatological Movements from Moscow to Cusco, 15th-18th Centuries. Routledge Studies in Early Modern Religious Dissents and Radicalism. Taylor & Francis. p. 50. ISBN 978-1-000-62499-1. Retrieved 2023-06-11.
  16. ^ Delany, P. (2015). British Autobiography in the Seventeenth Century. Routledge Library Editions: Autobiography. Taylor & Francis. p. 94. ISBN 978-1-317-37621-7. Retrieved 2023-01-17.
  17. ^ de Lazari, A. (1999). Идеи в России. Idee w Rosji (in Russian). Semper. ISBN 978-83-907031-8-3. Retrieved 2023-01-17.
  18. ^ Routledge Library Editions: Historiography. Routledge Library Editions: Historiography. Taylor & Francis. 2021. p. 17-PA186. ISBN 978-1-317-26808-6. Retrieved 2023-02-19.
  19. ^ Oman, C.W.C. (2018). Revival: The Sixteenth Century (1936). Routledge Revivals. Taylor & Francis. p. 106. ISBN 978-1-351-34170-7. Retrieved 2023-02-19.
  20. ^ Sangster, A. (2019). The Roots of Nationalism in European History. Cambridge Scholars Publishing. p. 94. ISBN 978-1-5275-3688-3. Retrieved 2023-03-06.
  21. ^ Mosse, G.L.; de Grazia, V. (2023). The Nationalization of the Masses: Political Symbolism and Mass Movements in Germany from the Napoleonic Wars Through the Third Reich. The Collected Works of George L. Mosse. University of Wisconsin Press. p. 3. ISBN 978-0-299-34204-3. Retrieved 2023-02-26.
  22. ^ Griffin, R.; Feldman, M. (2004). Fascism: The nature of fascism. Critical concepts in political science. Routledge. p. 145. ISBN 978-0-415-29016-6. Retrieved 2023-02-26.
  23. ^ Kecmanovic, D. (2013). The Mass Psychology of Ethnonationalism. Path in Psychology. Springer US. p. 202. ISBN 978-1-4899-0188-0. Retrieved 2023-02-26.
  24. ^ University of Prince Edward Island (1978). Canadian Review of Studies in Nationalism: Revue Canadienne Des Études Sur Le Nationalisme (in French). University of Prince Edward Island. Retrieved 2023-02-26.
  25. ^ Anderson, A.; Valente, J. (2002). Disciplinarity at the Fin de Siècle. Princeton University Press. p. 170. ISBN 978-0-691-08962-1. Retrieved 2023-03-06.
  26. ^ He, K.; Feng, H. (2013). Prospect Theory and Foreign Policy Analysis in the Asia Pacific: Rational Leaders and Risky Behavior. Foreign Policy Analysis. Taylor & Francis. p. 62. ISBN 978-1-135-13119-7. Retrieved 2023-02-12.
  27. ^ Floru, JP (2017). The Sun Tyrant: A Nightmare Called North Korea. Biteback Publishing. p. 7. ISBN 978-1-78590-288-8. Retrieved 2023-02-13.
  28. ^ Vantage Point. Naewoe Press. 1982. Retrieved 2023-02-13.
  29. ^ Yeo, A.; Chubb, D. (2018). North Korean Human Rights: Activists and Networks. Cambridge University Press. p. 262. ISBN 978-1-108-69284-7. Retrieved 2023-08-06.
  30. ^ "10 Real People Who Became Gods". September 2, 2016.
  31. ^ Hewitt, Hugh (March 12, 2007). A Mormon in the White House?: 10 Things Every Conservative Should Know About Mitt Romney. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 9781596980488 – via Google Books.
  • Peabody, Elizabeth Palmer. “Egotheism, the Atheism of To-Day” 1858, (reprinted in 1886 in her Last Evening with Allston)