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Cathedral seminar to equip clerics to deal with Dawkins - Comments

NewEnglandBob's Avatar Comment 1 by NewEnglandBob

What will his advice be?

Roll over and play dead, probably.

He has no facts to use.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 13:39:00 UTC | #239583

Sciros's Avatar Comment 2 by Sciros

When I read "equip" I thought it'd be with holy water, crosses, crossbows, and other stuff like that.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 13:41:00 UTC | #239585

Linda's Avatar Comment 3 by Linda

Richard you must attend the event unless of course they ban you as being the subject/enemy of their machinations.

This is certainly flattering to the God Delusion and really quite funny.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 13:42:00 UTC | #239587

happinessiseasy's Avatar Comment 4 by happinessiseasy

Thus guaranteeing that anyone who hasn't heard of him or his book by now does.

A whole seminar just for you? Go Dr. Dawkins!

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 13:51:00 UTC | #239601

Elwood Herring's Avatar Comment 5 by Elwood Herring

"First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win." - Gandhi.

Seems Richard is now at stage 3.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 13:53:00 UTC | #239604

Border Collie's Avatar Comment 6 by Border Collie

My, oh, my ... an antidote to Richard ... he'll evolve ...

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 13:55:00 UTC | #239606

PaulJ's Avatar Comment 7 by PaulJ

This is a seminar for clergy. That the Anglicans believe they need this speaks volumes for the influence and effectiveness of The God Delusion.

But John Cornwell, Keith Ward and David Wilkinson (on the spirituality of Star Wars?)?

One consequence of the current science and religion debate is that it makes theology appear reactive and defensive.
"Vacuous" would be a better word.
How can we bring science alive as a part of Christian liturgy, and the Gospel alive in the light of scientific understanding?
I doubt that you can. There are fundamental incompatibilities here, whatever Keith Ward may say about "developing a scientifically literate approach to theology."

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 13:55:00 UTC | #239607

ukvillafan's Avatar Comment 8 by ukvillafan

This is a day for clergy of the London Diocese only, so Richard is probably barred, unless he really leads a secret double life.

However, there are several evenings in October when many renowned individuals will be discussing issues relating to religion and science. I suggest anyone close enough, or someone on "our" side of equal renown should gatecrash (these are open events it seems) to join in/listen/report back etc. Follow this links to the St Paul's site

there is a link there to a complete programme of events.

Edit: for spelling!

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 14:00:00 UTC | #239609

mrjonno's Avatar Comment 9 by mrjonno

Does the C of E still actually believe in god, looking at the interview Dawkins gave their leader I'm not really convinced?

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 14:08:00 UTC | #239619

mjwemdee's Avatar Comment 10 by mjwemdee

Well, well, well. This is extraordinary indeed.
I couldn't help thinking though:

to help clergy counter the influence of the scientist and atheist Richard Dawkins.

in an earlier century, Richard would be dealt with in more summary ways, e.g. the stake or the block. I suppose, in this respect at least, the Church has become more enlightened...

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 14:08:00 UTC | #239620

tahustvedt's Avatar Comment 11 by tahustvedt

I'm not surprised.

I know of a devout christian who goes to meetings in his church groups where they discuss how to best respond to "atheist claims" here in Norway.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 14:13:00 UTC | #239623

Tzsak's Avatar Comment 12 by Tzsak

Hm, expecting some inane philosophy of mind to be introduced at some point as 'evidence' of the existence of a spiritual plane. ><

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 14:18:00 UTC | #239629

ridelo's Avatar Comment 13 by ridelo

No need to gatecrash.

Events are open to people of all faiths and none.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 14:19:00 UTC | #239631

Kiwi's Avatar Comment 14 by Kiwi

I know RD has a policy of not directly debating theists, but he has made some exceptions in engaging with Rowan Williams and on some TV shows. I just had a fantasy of him going along and confronting all these influential church leaders, and by the end of the intellectual debate, leaving the intellectually honest ones anyway, wondering why they have believed this supernatural nonsense. They then elect RD the new Archbishop and he uses the church infrastructure to promote rational thinking throughout Britain ! Then I woke up... :(

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 14:24:00 UTC | #239639

WilliamP's Avatar Comment 15 by WilliamP

Well, I wish you luck Anglican Church. Just don't forget to address the question of how the existence of a complex universe is explained by the pre-existence of a complex god. If you don't answer that question, then you are wasting your time.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 14:28:00 UTC | #239641

LeeLeeOne's Avatar Comment 16 by LeeLeeOne

The participants in this meeting would be better served (and so would everyone else) if it were Physics 101, Math 101, Earth Science 101, Economics 101, etc.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 14:33:00 UTC | #239644

Damien Trotter's Avatar Comment 17 by Damien Trotter

Excellent news indeed. It's an out and out confession they are running scared of rational thought.


Tue, 23 Sep 2008 15:25:00 UTC | #239674

Phasic's Avatar Comment 18 by Phasic

This must be tremendously flattering for Prof. Dawkins.

And I'll be interested to see if they come up with any new arguments for

a) The existence of a Creator God Entity, and

b) Why that Entity is the one described in the Bible (and not, for example, the Hindu texts).

Because really, I think they have to do both.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 15:28:00 UTC | #239678

dvespertilio's Avatar Comment 19 by dvespertilio


Tue, 23 Sep 2008 15:30:00 UTC | #239679

Gamma ut's Avatar Comment 20 by Gamma ut


You rock Prof. Dawkins!

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 15:38:00 UTC | #239684

rod-the-farmer's Avatar Comment 22 by rod-the-farmer

Perhaps our good Professor could offer to submit to the CoE, in advance of their seminar, several points that would invalidate his (Dawkins) claims. They could of course reject his suggestions, but at least that would give them a starting point. As pointed out by others, TGD would help them get a feel for his worldview.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 15:40:00 UTC | #239687

jaytee_555's Avatar Comment 21 by jaytee_555

"Cathedral seminar to equip clerics to deal with Dawkins".

Well, that's fair enough. After all, Dawkins has equipped many of us to deal with clerics!

Even after the clerics have had their crash course, we'll still win all the arguments, because our reasoning is based on facts, not faith.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 15:40:00 UTC | #239686

Vaal's Avatar Comment 23 by Vaal

That is interesting. Nice to see the congregation are asking questions after obviously reading TGD and the clergy not being able to address any of its arguments with any confidence.

However, if John Cornwall's counter arguments are as insipid as any of the flea books that have been reviewed here then I wouldn't exactly be licking my lips if I was one of the poor beleaguered vicars.

In fact, upon investigation, Paula has already done a devastating critique on Cornwall's diatribe, describing it as the weakest, and the most asinine of all the flea books she has reviewed.,2285,Fleabytes,Paula-Kirby#cornwell

I am particularly fond of this quote by Paula..

Suffice it to say that I was genuinely shocked when I read this book: not just at the complete lack of an argument, but at the incredibly spiteful, twisted, distorted nature of the accusations being made

Thanks once again Paula, for reviewing these epistles of nonsense, as I think I would rather stick my head down a toilet for a week.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 15:47:00 UTC | #239688

EvidenceOnly's Avatar Comment 24 by EvidenceOnly

The people who know that the emperor wears no clothes need to diligently coordinate their lies about how the fictitious cloths look great on the emperor.

They know that if a large group of people repeats the same lies over and over again, that a large part of the population will start believing that they must be true: "these wise men could not be all wrong at the same time, isn't it".

Guess what: this starts to smell like the Republican talking points.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 15:52:00 UTC | #239689

King of NH's Avatar Comment 25 by King of NH

Ditto, Gamma ut (comment #20)

Seriously, what else is there to say? I guess the fight is on.

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday. Dawkins -vs- Jesus. The battle of iconoclasts!

And apparently, the Anglicans think Dawkins has a good chance, or they wouldn't need the summit to help a GOD beat Dawkins.

I wonder how the good professor feels now that he's entering the hallowed realm of Galileo as a blasphemer to be wary of.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 16:08:00 UTC | #239695

Diacanu's Avatar Comment 26 by Diacanu

King of NH-

And apparently, the Anglicans think Dawkins has a good chance, or they wouldn't need the summit to help a GOD beat Dawkins.

Said it before, but it bears repeating, I love how these people think an omnipotent creator of the universe essentially needs an entourage of bodygaurds.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 16:12:00 UTC | #239696

IanRaugh's Avatar Comment 27 by IanRaugh

They certainly do seem desperate. Likely their instruction will just be more of the same arguments that Professor Dawkins has countered many times before.

Sometimes I wish they would come up with new material.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 16:34:00 UTC | #239698

quantum_flux's Avatar Comment 28 by quantum_flux

Oh great, I smell a witch hunt brewing.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 16:50:00 UTC | #239703

Diacanu's Avatar Comment 29 by Diacanu


Oh great, I smell a witch hunt brewing.

Or, a witch brew hunting!

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 17:04:00 UTC | #239706

phasmagigas's Avatar Comment 30 by phasmagigas

its almost comical especially as according to several fleas, dawkins position is a typical unsophisticated godless diatribe, these guys must have not actually noticed just how weak RD's arguments were!!

they seem desperate to hang on to their skirts and easy life.

i suppose they are trying to figure out the best stock answers so that 101 theists dont give 101 variously contradicting and varied answers to any one question from their flock.

religion: just make it up as you go along and you'll still be right.

Tue, 23 Sep 2008 17:45:00 UTC | #239718