Karen Armstrong Weaves Bizarre Defense of Religion
By PZ MYERS - ALTERNET
Added: Mon, 26 Oct 2009 00:00:00 UTC
Thanks to Clayton for the link.
Also on Pharyngula http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2009/10/the_zombies_will_sup_on_karen.php
Karen Armstrong has once again published a pile of meaningless twaddle in defense of religion. In this mess, she takes a series of statements about god that she says need rethinking…but as always, her "rethinking" is merely a reworking of apologetics for maintaining the status quo. It's almost as if she thinks it is a new and brilliant idea to just keep going to church and accepting Jesus into your heart. It's not.
Here's her little list of truisms that she aims to puncture.
"God Is Dead."
Armstrong says this isn't true, and points to fundamentalist upheavals as evidence that "God has proven to be alive and well". I think it means she doesn't understand Nietzsche.
Nietzsche, of course, wasn't arguing for a literal death of a deity, nor was he claiming that religion had disappeared from the world. He was making a narrower argument, that in his culture (19th century Europe), the concept of god had lost its material and moral authority. There is no central defining source of absolute truth, and we human beings have to rebuild our values around something new, other than this notion of a celestial monarch (he personally thought the new value was a "will to power", individual ambition and aspiration).
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