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God is not the enemy of reason - Comments

Opti-mystic's Avatar Comment 1 by Opti-mystic

'Melanie Phillips is a Daily Mail columnist' sums the whole tedious, predictable nonsense up.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 11:32:00 UTC | #252670

Steve Zara's Avatar Comment 2 by Steve Zara

There is little point challenging this nonsense in detail. But something does stand out:

This loss of cultural nerve has created an unwitting collusion between secular zealots and the Islamists who have declared war upon western civilisation, and who believe - correctly - that a secular west will be unable to resist them.


This is clearly nonsense. The freedoms of Western societies seem to be producing change in Muslim communities. There are now quite visible Muslim groups which support gay rights, and female equality. An example of the latter:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/religion/3219537/Professor-becomes-first-female-to-lead-mixed-Islamic-congregation-in-Britain.html

Those who try and label Muslims as some unified and threating community just aren't dealing with reality.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 11:41:00 UTC | #252674

JHJEFFERY's Avatar Comment 3 by JHJEFFERY

Not to waste words on this, or even use a good one:

Stoopid

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 11:42:00 UTC | #252675

Quetzalcoatl's Avatar Comment 4 by Quetzalcoatl

This article is a masterpiece. Never have I seen writing more riddled with ad-hominems, strawmen and downright dishonesty.

on the basis of his aggressive contention that evolution accounts for the origin of life, and that anyone who believes the world had a creator and a purpose should be exiled altogether from intelligent discourse


Dawkins has never said anything of the kind. Ironic that Philips is complaining about exclusion from intelligent discourse, given that her article so clearly fails to qualify as such.

London argues that the rise of secularism has so hollowed out Western society that it has left it acutely vulnerable to the predations of radical Islam.


Ah yes, the invocation of fear-based rhetoric. What Daily Mail article would be complete without it?

No less irrational is the overreach of science which, as London writes, has been hijacked by secular fundamentalists who want to supplant religion by asserting that only in science can truths be found.


Sheer rubbish.

Such "scientism" - as this overreach is termed


Termed by who?

The dogma that science provides the answer to every question and so supplants religion has led to a junking of the moral codes deriving from Judaism and Christianity that underpin western society.


Deriving from Judaism and Christianity, which in turn were ripped off from older cultures. And what junking of moral codes is this? The same one that cheap rags use to claim that we are living in "Broken Britain"? I suppose I shouldn't be surprised. This tripe is how newspapers are sold.

Science, rationality and the pursuit of truth are intimately related to the religious traditions of the west. If those traditions are not defended from within against the threat from without, this will be how the west was lost.


Right. Only Christianity can save us from the Islamic bogeyman. The pursuit of truth? It is precisely the truth that Philips is railing against in this article.

Total rubbish, all of it.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 11:46:00 UTC | #252677

Steve Zara's Avatar Comment 5 by Steve Zara

Quetz- Phillips is also a global warming denier, and does not believe that certain vaccines is safe. She is a nut.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 11:52:00 UTC | #252680

Quetzalcoatl's Avatar Comment 6 by Quetzalcoatl

Steve Zara-

Well, she does write for the Daily Mail.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 11:54:00 UTC | #252681

8teist's Avatar Comment 7 by 8teist


Science generates more questions than it can answer. The more science unravels the mysteries of the world for us, the more mysterious it becomes.


This appears to be more evidence that the religious are more concerned with comfort than the uncertainty of reality.

Prof Dawkins has met his match ? Lol

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 12:01:00 UTC | #252685

Elles's Avatar Comment 8 by Elles

"Melanie Phillips is a Daily Mail columnist."

'Nuff said.

Next!

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 12:04:00 UTC | #252686

phatbat's Avatar Comment 9 by phatbat

So so wrong in so many ways.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 12:10:00 UTC | #252688

Jay Cee's Avatar Comment 10 by Jay Cee

"In fact, we are living in a deeply irrational age, where millions are putting their faith in such mumbo-jumbo as astrology, parapsychology, paganism, witchcraft or conspiracies between sinister groups and extra-terrestrial forces. All of which goes to prove the truth of the old adage that when people stop believing in God, they will believe in anything."

What does that say about belief in God then? It's like that guy who said that belief in God is being replaced by worship of X-factor and such-like. Does this mean that belief in God is as shallow and superficial as a pop contest?

In my opinion this provides (very weak and speculative) evidence that memes can occupy loci in the brain. One gap gets replaced by another.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 12:13:00 UTC | #252690

AllanW's Avatar Comment 11 by AllanW

Melanie Phillips has been seen for a long while now as a sad, deluded ignoramus for spouting views like those in this article. As others have rightly pointed out she is not only a fearful, bigotted religiot but also one of the main-stays of the anti-MMR campaign that continues to harm the health of Britain. Climate change denier, Islamophobe and Christian delusional, I think it telling that not even the Daily Mail would publish this thoughtless bile but am saddened that the Jewish Chronicle has sunk so low in its standards.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 12:18:00 UTC | #252695

phatbat's Avatar Comment 12 by phatbat

Professor Richard Dawkins - the Savonarola of atheism - on the basis of his aggressive contention that evolution accounts for the origin of life, and that anyone who believes the world had a creator and a purpose should be exiled altogether from intelligent discourse


No dear, RD doesn't contend that evolution accounts for origin of life, just the diversity of life. It's not people who think the world had a creator that should be exiled from intelligent discourse, just people like you who don't know the difference between evolution and abiogenisis.

John Lennox, who argues for the existence of a creator on the basis of science - and demonstrates that, on his own scientific terms, Dawkins's arguments fail the test of reason.


No he doesn't. John Lennox argues for a creator on the basis of "pointers" found in the bible, in the assigning of purpose to the natural world and that he cannot accept that evil people can die without recieving justice here on earth, there-for God.

I can't be bothered to even start with the rest of this nonsense. desperate, very desperate.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 12:21:00 UTC | #252698

8teist's Avatar Comment 13 by 8teist

Savonarola, isn`t that a type of mobile phone???? :0

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 12:23:00 UTC | #252699

geru's Avatar Comment 14 by geru

I just saved about 3 minutes of my life by stopping at the first sentence of the second paragraph.

Sarcasm time: Wow, the "If people leave official religions they'll end up making all kinds of crazy religions of their own"-argument, never heard that one before.

Hmm, I finally resigned from church about 2-3 years ago, and I still haven't become a homeopath or founded a cult for Satan worshipping, guess I'm the exception that proves the rule then.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 12:27:00 UTC | #252700

MaxD's Avatar Comment 15 by MaxD

Dummy says,

The dogma that science provides the answer to every question and so supplants religion has led to a junking of the moral codes deriving from Judaism and Christianity that underpin western society.


I must have missed the meeting where we "junked" the moral codes. When was that. I wonder if by "junked the moral codes" she means the first 4 commandments are not honored very sharply these days? Or is she lamenting that women found not to be virgins on their wedding night don't get stoned on their fathers doorstep as regularly?
Again I did miss this meeting where secularist "junked" them so clearly I missed something.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 12:31:00 UTC | #252702

decius's Avatar Comment 16 by decius

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Professor Richard Dawkins - the Savonarola of atheism -


Yeah right. Everybody knows that Dawkins is advocating the burning of degenerate christian books and art.


Dawkins has been meeting his match in a remarkable Oxford mathematics professor called John Lennox, who argues for the existence of a creator on the basis of science


Of course. Lennox's beliefs - which pile up medieval papal doctrine (such as the immaculate conception of the mother of Mary) onto a literal reading of the gospel - are deeply rooted in respectable sciences like Alchemy, Magic, Necromancy and Voodoo.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 12:32:00 UTC | #252703

Swordmaiden's Avatar Comment 17 by Swordmaiden

"God-like status afforded to Professor Richard Dawkins "

Why didn't someone tell me? Now I'll have to stop believing in The Prof too! Dammit!

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 13:00:00 UTC | #252707

Diacanu's Avatar Comment 18 by Diacanu

decius-


Yeah right. Everybody knows that Dawkins is advocating the burning of degenerate christian books and art.


I think all this fear comes from guilt.

They assume once people start abandoning their cult in droves, some people will say to themselves "hey, your stupid cult fucked with my life, and ability to be happy!", which of course to their mind automatically leads to "rip off their faces!!!!!".

Cuz, y'know, that whole lack of faith in humanity thing religion has going on.

Hey, religiots, how about "not interested in your cult, please leave us alone"?
That one too hard to process?
No, it's always book burnings and persecution with you folks.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 13:05:00 UTC | #252709

Jay Cee's Avatar Comment 19 by Jay Cee

"God-like status awarded to Richard Dawkins"
"characteristics of religious fanaticism"

There is just no pleasing the religious. We "worship" Dawkins and have the "characteristics" of a religious group. We have all the things that they admire in themselves but it's just not good enough! When we are devoid of belief it's bad and when we worship the "holy text" of the Origin it's also bad. We can't win.

I just love the "your just as faithful and dogmatic as us" argument. It makes me laugh everytime.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 13:10:00 UTC | #252712

Bonzai's Avatar Comment 20 by Bonzai

This loss of cultural nerve has created an unwitting collusion between secular zealots and the Islamists who have declared war upon western civilisation, and who believe - correctly - that a secular west will be unable to resist them.


That's right. When secularists call for getting rid of faith schools, including Muslim faith schools which are some of the worst youth indoctrination camps, guess who protest the loudest? All faith heads eventually circle the wagon whenever they see the threat from atheism.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 13:11:00 UTC | #252713

epeeist's Avatar Comment 21 by epeeist

The Daily Mail - so toxic that irate_atheist won't let his cat use it to shit on.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 13:18:00 UTC | #252716

Diacanu's Avatar Comment 22 by Diacanu

Swordmaiden-


"God-like status afforded to Professor Richard Dawkins "

Why didn't someone tell me? Now I'll have to stop believing in The Prof too! Dammit!


No, so long as we don't create rigid dogma about the nature of him, but have individual fluffy watered down "personal faiths", about his existence, we'll be fine.

My particular Richard Dawkins shoots rainbows out of his eyes, and the left rainbow makes skittles, and the right rainbow makes Lucky Charms marshmallows.

I don't need to prove this, because this particular Dawkins lives in my heart, not in scripture, and I simply KNOW him to be the true Dawkins.

Despite the latter assertion, whatever Dawkins makes you happy is totally cool.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 13:26:00 UTC | #252717

NewEnglandBob's Avatar Comment 23 by NewEnglandBob

Once again, time to FLUSH this article down the crapper to eliminate it's stench from humanity.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 13:28:00 UTC | #252718

decius's Avatar Comment 24 by decius

Comment #266270 by Diacanu

I agree with your astute analysis.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 13:31:00 UTC | #252719

rod-the-farmer's Avatar Comment 25 by rod-the-farmer


we are living in a deeply irrational age, where millions are putting their faith in such mumbo-jumbo as astrology, parapsychology, paganism, witchcraft or conspiracies between sinister groups and extra-terrestrial forces.

So only these beliefs are irrational, I suppose. Religions are rational ? Which ones ? Some/all/none ? Since they mostly contradict each other, some of them have to be irrational. The safe bet is to consider them all irrational, until any one of them can prove otherwise.

secularism has taken on the characteristics of religious fanaticism, in espousing dogma inimical to human flourishing and punishing dissenters in order to slam the lid on debate

I must have missed the memo on atheist dogma. Especially the part about it being inimical to "human flourishing". Boy. You snooze, you lose. That would be the most important part, too. Human flourishing. Wow. If anyone reading this has a copy of that, please send it to me. I thought I was already flourished enough. Maybe I could have been even more so. Humph.

Science Religion generates more questions than it can answer. The more science religion claims to unravels the mysteries of the world for us, the more mysterious it becomes.

Until finally religion collapses in a death spiral of ridicule and inanity.

This (Hudson)institute is a front-line combatant in America's culture wars, in which it seeks to defend the values of western civilisation against the onslaught from those trying to destroy it.

And they would be ? Atheists ? Secularists ? Militant muslims ? Be specific.

In his book, America's Secular Challenge: The Rise of a New National Religion, London argues that the rise of secularism has so hollowed out Western society that it has left it acutely vulnerable to the predations of radical Islam.

So let me see if I can trace this out. We need more religion in the west, to battle against the religion of the middle east ? Hmm. Does that ring a bell with anyone else ?

What balderdash.

OK, that's it for me. I could have dissected each and every paragraph, but I can't be bothered any more.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 13:44:00 UTC | #252726

alan baylis's Avatar Comment 26 by alan baylis

This article is such mind numbing drivel from end to end, that it is hard to know where to start shredding it.

Perhaps I could start by asking the readers of the Jewish Chronicle what it feels like, having your intelligence insulted like this?

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 13:59:00 UTC | #252732

gazzaofbath's Avatar Comment 27 by gazzaofbath

Absolute tripe.

But I do look forward to the day when a half decent critique of atheism or defence of theism is made by some believer. I'm not imagining that it would be likely to affect my atheist outlook but as a rationalist I relish the challange that a half decent argument would present to my intellectual facilities.

I just don't see anything approaching challenging, however, from any so-called theist intellectual.

Maybe we could think of a half decent argument ourselves! A bit like the silly undergraduate exercises I remember joining in trying to think of arguments that might persuade you the earth could be flat.

I think any argument posing a purely personal god, with a sort of 'god of gaps' aspect would be the toughest line though mainly 'cos it is a bit fuzzy, and therefore hard to pin down.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 14:15:00 UTC | #252736

Jay Cee's Avatar Comment 28 by Jay Cee

Comment #266298 by gazzaofbath

"Maybe we could think of a half decent argument ourselves! A bit like the silly undergraduate exercises I remember joining in trying to think of arguments that might persuade you the earth could be flat."

It just isn't worth posing an argument for the existence of God. But while we are at it, lets pose an argument for the existence of the greek gods as well. There are no skyhooks. There is no supernatural. End of.

What is a greatly more difficult question is how we should live our lives when there is no inherent purpose in the universe.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 14:28:00 UTC | #252741

j.mills's Avatar Comment 29 by j.mills

Strawmen, distortions, misrepresentations, lies, caricatures, howlers and Melanie Phillips. It's a perfect parody, except that it's not a parody.

And of course the usual failure to address at all whether any religion is true. Yet for some reason, Judaism and Christianity are "good" and Islam, paganism and witchcraft are "bad". Go figure.

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 14:31:00 UTC | #252743

m-man's Avatar Comment 30 by m-man

"On the basis of his aggressive contention that evolution accounts for the origin of life"

this really shows that they know so little about evolution

Sat, 18 Oct 2008 14:44:00 UTC | #252745