This site is not maintained. Click here for the new website of Richard Dawkins.

Comment

← A Baltimore Catechism for the New Atheists

Quine's Avatar Jump to comment 6 by Quine

After calling him out for mischaracterizing Krauss, I reworked his "Catechism" points as follows:

1) Apart from nature, which includes human beings and our cultural creations, there is nothing. There is no God, no soul, and no life beyond death.

Apart from nature, which includes human beings and our cultural creations, there is no objective evidence for any deities, souls, or life beyond death.

2) Nature is self-originating, not the creation of God.

Nature shows the ability to be self-organized without a requirement for divine creation or intervention.

3) The universe has no overall point or purpose, although individual human lives can be lived purposefully.

Points and purposes are relative to the positions of observers; humans are the only known beings capable of this kind of observation.

4) Since God does not exist, all explanations and all causes are purely natural and can be understood only by science.

Methodological Materialism is the only known process for the development of reliable knowledge. Other knowledge may exist, but there is no other way to reliably know.

5) All the various features of living beings, including human intelligence and behavior, can be explained ultimately in purely natural terms, and today that usually means in evolutionary, specifically Darwinian terms.

Progressively more and more of the various features of living beings, including human intelligence and behavior, can be explained in purely natural terms, and today that usually means in evolutionary, specifically Neodarwinian terms.

6) Faith in God is the cause of innumerable evils and should be rejected on moral grounds.

Dogma is the cause of innumerable evils and should be rejected on moral grounds.

7) Morality does not require belief in God, and people behave better without faith than with it.

Morality does not require faith; we can think our way to better behavior.

I got some positive feedback from one poster: "As for Quine's moderate restatements of atheistic broadsides, while not stupid they are not compelling." Working up to "not stupid" is quite high marks when compared to the usual "burn in Hell" reply. Perhaps some progress is being made. Anyone have any other ideas on these 7 points?

Mon, 06 Aug 2012 18:04:58 UTC | #950449