Most letters fall into either 'the good' or 'the ugly' section, but sometimes a letter of criticism is slightly civil. We give these writers a point for marginally good manners.
why not ask (globally I mean ) to stop teaching the evolutionist theory to children , it is traumatic for them, as I EXPERIENCED WHEN MY TEACHER TOLD ME THAT WE COULD EVOLUTION FROM MONKEYS RELATIVES? ¡¡¡¡¡¡ITS HORRIBLE!!!!!!!!
Permalink - Posted Monday, 20 August 2012 at 02:31 PM
I am in the process of reading your book, The GOD Delusion and feel compelled to write to you a few of my thoughts.
GOD is not a delusion. HE is very real. I certainly cannot prove it to you and I assure you nobody else can or ever will. GOD will not be 'proven,' at least to the standard accepted by science. HE does prove HIMSELF, but this proof is reserved for those you might call the faithful.
What I can't understand is how a person as learned as yourself can discount the concept of faith. I can see (clearly) that you don't have it, but even yourself cannot deny that the vast majority of mankind does in some form or another. If I were a man as learned and educated as yourself and I realized that literally every generation for the past 2000 years contained between 3-4 billion monotheistic believers in some understanding of the Abrahamic GOD, that in and of itself would make me want to at least learn more about this concept of faith. Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. (Hebrews 11:1 ESV)
True believers don't need proof that GOD exists. We feel HIM. We hear HIS voice and respond to HIS promptings. Had you been a documentarian of my life from its beginning until now, able to hear and analyze my thoughts, review my decisions, and see the outcomes, you could only come to one of two conclusions: either a am the luckiest, most fortunate person in the entire world with lady luck smiling on me every step of the way, or GOD ALMIGHTY had indeed planned my life and was fulfilling HIS promises in my life every step of the way.
That being said, there are multitudes of church-going people that believe they are in GOD's good graces, HIS "elect," HIS children. They are in for a surprise one day. In your book on page 130 you begin speaking of Pascal's Wager in which, given the gravity of the possible outcome, one might as well say they believe in GOD just to cover the bases, just "in case." “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16 ESV) Pisteuon is the Greek word for "believe." However, it is not the same as simply acknowledging a concept in one's mind, such as, "I believe the sun is likely to come up tomorrow." It's a bit stronger than that. Lets say I spread a cable over the Niagara River and then traverse the falls with a wheel barrow. Once I get to the Canadian side I find you there and you say, "hey, nice job!" My response is, "well, do you think I can do it again?" When you say, "sure," I respond, "well then get in the wheel barrow and lets go." Believe, or pisteuon, means, "get in the wheel barrow." If you truly believe, you "get in the wheel barrow." Simply believing as a concept in one's head is not sufficient to be included as one of GOD's children.
GOD's children know GOD and HE knows us. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: (John 10:27 KJB) This word, know, is ginosko in Greek and indicates an intimate, experiential knowledge. It's also the same word used in euphemism for sexual relationships. The trappings of religion are useless, as is being good, going to church, giving away your money, kneeling 7 times a day facing the holy mecca and any other of the multitude of religious traditions. The only thing that matter is being in a close, personal, intimate relationship with GOD.
Yes, I know GOD. I speak with HIM and HE speaks with me. HE is indeed very real. Am I delusional? Those that know me would say otherwise.
GOD bless you, Mr. Dawkins.
Permalink - Posted Sunday, 12 August 2012 at 10:10 PM
I wanted to write to thank you for posting testimonies of atheists on your site, filed under 'the good'. (http://richarddawkins.net/letters/good). I read through most of the first page of entries in your latest group (as of 7 Oct.), and it helped me see a consistency that I've noted in the ideology of other non-believers as well that has great value as an apologetic tool. There is overall a parallel to the thinking described in the first chapter of Romans:
18 For God's wrath is revealed from heaven against all godlessness and unrighteousness of people who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth, 19 since what can be known about God is evident among them, because God has shown it to them. 20 From the creation of the world His invisible attributes, that is, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what He has made. As a result, people are without excuse. 21 For though they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God or show gratitude. Instead, their thinking became nonsense, and their senseless minds were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man, birds, four-footed animals, and reptiles.
24 Therefore God delivered them over in the cravings of their hearts to sexual impurity, so that their bodies were degraded among themselves. 25 They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served something created instead of the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.
What was interesting to me about those who wrote was that, in terms of the faiths they claimed to once follow, none of them seemed to have ever grasped the truth of the Gospel according the the Bible. Many of the writers tell of their background in Roman Catholicism. Held to strictly, RC doctrine posits the works of an individual as a basis for salvation rather than faith alone (Eph. 2:8-9), which is a different gospel than that of Jesus Christ revealed in the Bible. In one letter, Philip Matthews attended a "liberal" Roman Catholic school, saying he always took evolution as fact and the Genesis creation account as metaphorical. Numerous research indicates that believers who abandon faith and church typically do not have a good grasp on the fundamentals, particularly the historicity of Genesis. If Genesis is "metaphorical at best", not only are we left with evolutionary fallacy and human speculation about origins, but there is no reality of sin and our need for a Savior. Another letter (anonymous, dated 31 Aug) is from a man attributing his atheism to an "unable god" in the face of the death he witnessed in Iraq, which is a short-sighted view of the God described in Scripture and again denies the reality of sin.
Most of the 'deconverts' tell of early years in some type of faith in God, affirming that a general knowledge of our Creator is innate, but this truth is "suppressed" (Rom. 1:18) in exchange for man's own ideas. Many talk about a gradual conversion and clarity in their new atheism, which Rom. 1:22, 23, 25 describes as "Claiming to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man... They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served something created instead of the Creator..." It's likely that many atheists, all of whom are made in God's image (Gen. 1:27) and born with a sense of God and His moral law (Rom. 2:15), are lured away by "empty philosophy" (Col. 2:8), and, lacking a view of God's word as true and authoritative, abandon objective truth altogether. Instead, atheists worship created things. In every 'deconversion' letter I read, their god became you, and their Bible, The God Delusion. Thanks to God's word, this is no surprise for Christians.
I am grateful for these formulaic accounts of the suppression of truth and denial of our Creator warned about in the Bible. It has served to affirm my own faith.
Permalink - Posted Sunday, 12 August 2012 at 10:09 PM
In a book entitled "My life and letters" written shortly before his death, Charles Darwin stated "Not one change of species into another is on record. We cannot prove that a single species has been changed" yet, in school classrooms up and down the country, our children are incorrectly taught that reptiles turn into birds, and that other species-to-species macroevolution is "fact" - in direct contradiction of Darwin's own almost-final conclusion.
How easily we are fooled into assuming that something is Truth, simply because it is stated and re-stated often enough, as if it was, without one scintilla of genuine scientific evidence to support it.
The ageless story of the "Emperor's New Clothes" has never been quite so apt, as right now, when applied to the THEORY of evolution!
Oh, one other thing - someone once said "The mind is like a parachute - before using it, make sure it's open." In this case, "open" to supernatural (lit. "above nature") as well as natural scientific explanation.
Permalink - Posted Friday, 22 June 2012 at 07:40 PM
This is the only e-mail address that I could find in order to pass on a timely message, so apologies if it's an inappropriate one.
The first thing that strikes me about Richard Dawkins is the man's breathtaking arrogance. The very grand title 'The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science' speaks volumes in itself.
If any right-minded man genuinely believes that there is no God (and no devil either, come to that), then he ought to go out a bit more. Perhaps lay aside all the academic books and curb the arrogance, and go out into the world. As the old secular saying goes - 'There is more to Heaven and earth than man ever dreamed of.' Very true.
I personally believe in God because I know He exists. God has made promises...and lo and behold, they come to pass. Only last June, I attended a church meeting where a coloured prophet from Arizona was speaking. His prophecies were awesomely accurate. He was speaking specifically to individuals about specific events that had occurred in their lives, and he was spot on. Absolutely 100% accurate. Now then, any objective person could only conclude that this prophet was either a mind reader or that the Lord was speaking to him, big time. I know which I believe.
What makes Mr Dawkins' personal situation perilous is this: Not only is he barking up the wrong tree (he's most definitely in the wrong forest!), but he is actively leading others astray. 'On thin ice', as they say. I know that the great scientist will take no notice of a verse from the New Testament, but St. Paul's warning that 'God will not be mocked' does come to mind when I think of Mr Dawkins and his cohorts.
What a pity that the woolly head of the Anglican Church of England does not get to grips with this man, and put him back in his box. Let's hope that the current Archbishop of York will soon be taking over.
And finally, some really good news all round! God has been promising a great revival in North Wales. Christians across the globe have heard that something big is about to happen here. Pentecostal churches are being planted throughout North Wales by locals and outsiders. The CofE may be knackered, but the pentecostal and evangelical churches are witnessing significant growth amongst young and old, rich and poor.
Watch this space. It's not too late for you, Rich - remember the thief on the Cross.
'Newyddion da o lawenydd mawr', as we say in Welsh.
Gwyndaf M Hughes, BA
Permalink - Posted Friday, 07 October 2011 at 02:52 AM
I could not find your contact email, but I found this one. I just thought I would write to you and say I was just listening to one of your videos and you are a very good public speaker. I was quite impressed with your calm attitude. One point that I did hear that I thought is not really true is where you said that there is no evidence that God exists. I have had a life where God has shown himself to me many times in a real way. I pray that through reading these, what I call, miraculous experiences you to will come to know God has a personal love for you visit http://www.futureandahope.net to read these experiences. If you want come and visit www.christianforums.com if you would like further discussion, it is not my forum but I visit it often. My user name is FutureAndAHope. God bless you. Praying for you always.
Permalink - Posted Monday, 29 August 2011 at 06:31 PM
An possible explanation of the unexplainable
Dear Mr Dawkins,
Please accept my great appreciation for your inimitable talent to clarify and put many things into perspective that were hitherto hidden in clouds of superstitious religious indoctrination. Having said that I am convinced you are wrong on at least two counts. The first is your insistence that homeopathy doesn't work. The second is your claim that there is absolutely no such thing as god (or anything remotely similar).
Firstly I am a great disbeliever of humbug and poppy-cock, be it religious or pseudo-scientific in nature and you can imagine how sceptical I was when a friend of my wife suggested many years ago I take homeopathic drops to cure a cold or when I felt a bit queasy after too much food and wine. For me, on most of these occasions, homeopathy worked and has worked ever since. I don't profess to know why it works; I would be thrilled to hear a plausible scientific explanation if there was one but, to my knowledge, there isn't and I will therefore continue to accept that this particular "pseudo-scientific poppy-cock" really helps to cure my maladies.
Secondly I am sure you are quite right in your conviction that there is no moral judge, no grey-bearded man/god (or spaghetti monster) sitting somewhere in the heavens looking down on us earthlings. However, I do feel ("feel" being the operative word perhaps) that there is an omnipresent spirit, an intangible energy if you like, that is an intrinsic part of all living things. Not being a scientist and in procession of your eloquence, this has become my personal explanation why humans all over the globe have invented gods, devils and angels etc to try to explain an otherwise unexplainable phenomenon. I am a farmer and have long since believed that animals and plants have a "spirit" too and I am convinced that this "breath of life" also departs their bodies when they die. Make no mistake, I believe secularism is something very precious and if religious influences were completely banned from our lives, the human world would be a better place but strangely enough I often also feel this "spirit" in places of human worship (churches, mosques and football stadiums etc). I have tried to explain these feelings away as possibly belonging to an electrical charge or some human chemical residue but I don't think it is. This "spirit" (for want of a better word), that should not of course be hijacked by believers in bible/koran gods or explained away with any other tribal religious hocus-pocus, I use to explain why the very idea of a "god" even exists and it has always helped me personally to understand and explain that part of the natural world around me for which I would otherwise have no rational explanation.
Permalink - Posted Wednesday, 17 August 2011 at 01:02 AM
Richard I have not read your books. Not because I have a particular view of them just I have not. I may do.
It is interesting though to see that you are passionate in declaring God is dead.
I am fascinated by the universe and we probably agree will never now all it has in it. In fact we will not know even a fraction of all it has in it. I think I read somewhere you agree with that point.
All the theories 11th dimension, M theory, string theory multiverse
All look perfectly interesting and good theories to me.
I am sure the flat earth was a good theory - looked flat so was flat - seems logical
I am sure the earth being at the centre of the universe was a good theory too.
All of these theories are interesting until someone finds a way to disprove them.
I guess the God theory is a good one too. Nobody has disproved it.
You seem to be trying.
You see if you don't have some core creator or power or at least builder with a plan what is the point of it all. There is actually even no point trying to disprove God because from what you say it doesn't really matter what I am saying to you, nor what you may say back.
If there is a God it all matters, every last neutrino matters because it all has a point and a purpose. Nothing ends.
I guess entertain the spiritual aspect of religion (please bear with me). Think of the possibilities. Life eternal to dwell in an infinite universe without the restriction of time or movement.
Time to learn all there is to know. Time to go look at all there is. You may say I'm a dreamer but I am not the only one. Even in Communist Russia religion continued. you see its a combination of a great hope and a core need to make sense of it all. No matter what you say or do that will never change and even if you do succeed in convincing everyone that you are right and everyone becomes an atheist even then will you have proved your 'no God theory'. You can't nobody can. So why are you so intent? What drives you? Ego, love of your fellow primates.
My advice to you Richard with the limited time you have left is go sit on a beach mate.
I do not really want a reply because no matter what you or I say, according to you it is really in the end of no real consequence. But you can if you like and I will read it. Probably not with an open mind but then again whom real cares anyway.
You will never prove God does not exist, I know you will try. Good luck. No real point really. Give up - relax - go sit on a beach mate, go fishing ... have a happy day. it could be your last. You never know.
If God actually tapped on your door and said hello would you be welcoming. Would you acknowledge your theory was as flat as the idea of a flat earth.
I cannot prove God exists - only God can do that. But at the same time I do not actively try to either I just hope. Is there anything wrong with that? So I suggest you may want to get off the back of those like me who do and let us be.
Keep up the good work on science though and do spend a bit of time at the beach mate. Relax.
Permalink - Posted Wednesday, 17 August 2011 at 01:01 AM
After going through the the episodes of 'The Genius Of Charles Darwin', i'm left with the impression that you've really gone deep into the evolution theory.
I'm impressed with your eloquence on the subject. But unfortunately, all your efforts (histrionics?), as far as i'm concerned, are a mere waste of time. Because, after All your explanations, and assertions that what you believe in is nothing but pure science, backed by solid proof, end with the lame reasoning that we're headed nowhere. That life is a mere merry go round, generation after generation, on a stage that serves only so that th fittest can survive, improve, and go forward. Nowhere do i find an explanation of WHY humans show compassion to others of their species. Or WHY humans have a conscience. The reasons put forward to explain 'soul' are just plain drivel. Or not.
Seeing that the West, in general, is a liberal society, that believes in free sex, all these explanations reek of convenience, so that the low morals, and their consequent ills (that have a grip on most humans that is plainly one of steel) that most people in the 'West' live by, are justified. After all, if you look closely, the inherent good of the people in the West is overshadowed by the flawed philosophies they follow, those of Nietsche, for instance. The Church of England itself was founded on lies and murder, for the sake of personal gain.
And all that people like you are doing, is glorifying all that nonsense, not knowing the joys of something far greater.
And the moment, you realise, is going to be your last on Earth, will bring home this horrid truth to you. And lead you to an unhappy death. To say that I, for instance, am part of a vast cycle, a process, natural, or otherwise, is, to me, nothing but demeaning. Life certainly has meaning. And simplifying life leaves one with a beautiful sense of purpose, and a joy that those of your persuasion will unfortunately never experience.
Creationism, on the other hand, makes a lot of sense.
Permalink - Posted Monday, 15 August 2011 at 10:48 PM
Good Evening Dr. Dawkins,
First off, I want to express my appreciation of you. I believe that you have been blessed with a great amount of intellect, and an uncanny ability to expound what you believe. Your ability not only to iterate your thoughts to millions through your publications, but also argue and provide meaningful discourse with those who challenge you are both admirable and unique. I say this because I believe that exceedingly few individuals have your abilities, and fewer still use them in a way that truly impact people. To squander one's gift(s) (as we are not all necessarily "equal" in these regards) may be the mark of the greatest foolishness. So you are very much appreciated!
My primary reason for writing you though is to tell you nothing less than the God of this Universe Loves you (I find that I must capitalize "Love" in order that it can be distinguished from the love so often expressed in earthy terms). I was sitting in Easter service, thoroughly enjoying the time of worship, and I felt the urge that you needed to know just that. Everyone needs hope, and that is just what Christ offers, "For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him."
Also, I know that you receive myriad emails/letters that express frustration, disgust, or even hatred of your work, or even you, from people under the banner of Christianity. For what it is worth, I apologize that Christians (I would argue "Christian" is a rather watered down term, that comes with many false connotations, and true as well) can and are so very terrible at times. I do pray that you would see Christ for who He is, and not for the faults that are often displayed in Christendom (whether that be intellectually, culturally, or especially in love). I will not argue for good intentions, because "from the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks."
However, I would say to those that are so terribly rude that "Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth." And that truth, good sir, is that Christ, the Son of God, came and died for you, out of a love and compassion that can hardly be expressed in human words (especially from a rather inarticulate individual as myself).
I do not believe you are the enemy. In fact, I rather enjoy you! I appreciate your thorough and deep understanding of the beautiful realm of science. And I appreciate the challenges that you bring to the discussion of life. So thank you for your work!
May the God of all grace reveal Himself unto thee.
Permalink - Posted Monday, 15 August 2011 at 10:15 PM
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Permalink - Posted Monday, 15 August 2011 at 10:11 PM
I was an atheist, but i did not want to be one, i wanted to believe that i am going somewhere when i die, i took a shot in the dark and sincerely and humbly asked God if he existed to let me know. That was 1991 and i have experienced God 1000's of times since then that i don't doubt His existence at all. I can't understand how anyone would rather believe God does not exist than believe He does exist. The most profound two words i can say are "I am", the worst thing that can happen to me is "I am not" - non existence, hell would not be as bad as that.
There are so many miracles in the world, the evidence for God is overwhelming for those who want to believe in Him.
God bless you,
Permalink - Posted Monday, 15 August 2011 at 10:08 PM
Dear Mr. Dawkins,
I'd like to tell you a fairy tale, since you like fairy tales.
Once upon a time, about 15 to 20 billion years ago, there was nothing; absolutely nothing anywhere in the entire universe.
Then the nothing exploded! A total vacuum, so they tell us, had become something!
After the explosion occurred, the law of gravity is supposed to have invented itself, which is quite a thought. Soon the complete formulas of other laws began inventing themselves.
"The naive view implies that the universe suddenly came into existence and found a complete system of physical laws waiting to be obeyed . . Actually it seems more natural to suppose that the physical universe and the laws of physics are interdependent." —*WH. McCrea, "Cosmology after Half a Century," Science, Vol. 160, June 1968, p. 1297.
At some point (theories vary as to when) as temperatures cooled, the nothingness magically turned itself into hydrogen! Then, at some point immediately or thereafter (opinions vary), some of the hydrogen changed into helium.
Both hydrogen and helium are gases. We are told that the gas spread outward throughout the universe for about ten billion years, and contrary to the laws of physics, the hydrogen and helium gas gradually pushed itself into chunks. More and more of it clumped together, until soon gigantic pieces of it had formed. These became stars and galaxies with their intricate orbits.
The initial "Bang" explosion is said to have produced only hydrogen and perhaps helium, but after the stars had pushed themselves together they began exploding like strings of firecrackers. Then, reforming, large numbers exploded a second time. And presto! All 90 elements had been produced by the second wave of explosions!
As the fairy tale goes on, explosion after explosion took place as loose gas pressed itself into stars and then those stars exploded. Hundreds of billions of stars were exploding all over the universe. This went on for long ages. There was no reason why it started, and there was no way for it to stop. It was a self-initiating activity, destined to continue on forever. These regularly occurring explosions should be occurring in our own time. When you go out tonight you ought to be able to see exploding stars in the sky.
Each time these stars exploded outward, they gathered back together and exploded again. We are told that our own sun had its third explosion about 5 billion years ago.
But, quite well aware that stars are not now regularly exploding in the sky, the theorists came up with the idea that about a million years ago the explosions mysteriously stopped! Why did they set that terminal date at "a million years ago"? Because the most distant stars were thought to be a million light years away, and since they are not now seen to be exploding it was decided that they must have stopped exploding just before the time that their starlight was sent to us from that those farthest distances from Earth.
End of story and the theorists lived happily ever after.
George Lemaitre, a Belgium Jesuit, struck on the basic idea in 1927, and George Gamow, R.A. Alpher, and R. Herman devised the basic Big Bang model in 1948-1949. But it was Gamow, a well-known Reasearch scientist and science fiction writer, that gave it its present name and popularized it after that. Gamow dubbed it the "Big Bang." Campaigning for the idea enthusiastically, he was able to convince many other scientists. Because Gamow was also a part-time science-fiction writer, he enjoyed writing about impossible things.
So when it came to explaining the "Big Bang" theory to fellow scientists, he used quaint little cartoons to emphasize the details. The cartoons really helped sell the idea.
Permalink - Posted Monday, 15 August 2011 at 10:07 PM
Dear Dr. Dawkins,
Your enthralling conversation on Irish radio news caught my attention during the week. I am almost 57 and was raised a Catholic - I still practice. We have a saying in Irish "ní gan chríonnacht an chinnteacht". My translation of that would be loosely "wisdom is not forthcoming without certainty". Death is a certainty.
I believe in God, not because it suits me to do so, but because I have what I understand to be faith. One of us is right, and in my simple faith sort of way, I reckon I could prove the existence of God to you. That's my invitation, if you find yourself in Galway and are partial to a tipple, allow me to stand you a drink and let us have that conversation. You'd make a great convert not only for yourself but for mankind also!
Dia leat, (God be with you)
Permalink - Posted Monday, 15 August 2011 at 10:06 PM
I will continue to keep you and each and every one of your followers in my daily prayers. Please feel free to contact me at any time, day or night if you would like for me to share with you why Jesus is so real in my life and why He loves you so much too.
Permalink - Posted Monday, 15 August 2011 at 10:06 PM
I just want to share this brilliant quote:
“The origins of most great religions go back to groups of people who made this discovery that you don’t look for god, you don’t look for power in the Caesars or in the temples or in the churches and all that. You look within.” (Tim Leary)
Religious experience is a natural state of mind, achievable through meditation, yoga and many other practices. We are God, all of us. I agree with Mr Dawkins on many accounts, and I dislike organised religions too. But behind the facade of 'real' there is primary reality - the White Light, the Unbearable Compassion, the Nature of the Mind. And it can be felt and experienced, as confirmed by many mystics, yogis and holy people through the ages. I think Mr Dawkins is simply living out his karma, but in the moment of death we all finally wake up from the human game and see ourselves for what we are - beings of light. I can only have compassion for Mr Dawkins and hope he will open his heart finally. What we can see and measure is not all there is.
Thank you & Namaste
Former atheist Dario
Permalink - Posted Monday, 15 August 2011 at 10:05 PM
I enjoyed reading the book,The Greatest Show on Earth is was well written and brought to light some of my misconceptions of Darwin and evolution. However, to Professor Hawkins dismay, I am still a young earth creationist. I was not reared in a zealous religious house, I did believe in evolution for quite some time, until seven years ago, and I was sure a young earth concept was both ignorant and stupid. Yet, I came to be one after much study and reflection. I am not afraid to be considered stupid, perverse, a history-denier or any other names some may hurl my way, because of my belief.
For the "deconverted" people that are so thankful for Dawkins "freeing" you what do you think of A.G.N Flew, Peter Hithchens, and Alister McGrath, atheists that searched the evidence and converted to the belief of a creator?
Hawkins chided me in his book for not learning of evolution and Darwins theory, yet he is undisciplined in the God of the Bible and its message. I will not bother reading :The God Delusion" I glanced at parts of it and it see,s to be the same argumenst that have been made by many other authors I have read.
Permalink - Posted Monday, 15 August 2011 at 10:04 PM
Dear Mr. Dawkins,
It has been a great mystery to me as to why you do not understand the mere concept of faith. I have been looking through your books, watching your interviews, and watching debates that you have been apart of. Through all of this, it seems as though you and many others are “baffled” by the enormous number of people who believe in the existence of God, and the gospel of Jesus Christ. You and many others (who take time to read up on your strong efforts to stop faith) see us as being the most foolish people on the face of the earth. But then the answer as to why you don’t get it was right in front of me the whole time. It’s something called the spirit of God. Here are a couple of verses that explains everything that confuses you:
“That is what is meant by the Scriptures which say that no mere man has ever seen, heard or even imagined what wonderful things God has ready for those who love the Lord. But we know about these things because God has sent his Spirit to tell us, and his Spirit searches out and shows us all of God’s deepest secrets. No one can really know what anyone else is thinking, or what he is really like, except that person himself. And no one can know God’s thoughts except God’s own spirit. And God has actually given us his Spirit (and not the world’s spirit) to tell us about the wonderful free gifts of grace and blessing that God has given us. In telling you about these gifts we have even used the very words given to us by the Holy Spirit, not words that we as men might choose. So we use the Holy Spirits words for interpreting spiritual truth in spiritual language. But the man who isn’t a Christian can’t understand and can’t accept these thoughts from God, which the Holy Spirit teaches us. They sound foolish to him, because only those who have the Holy Spirit within them can understand what the Holy Spirit means. Others just can’t take it in. But the spiritual man has insight into everything, and that bothers and baffles the man of the world, who can’t understand him at all. How could he? For certainly he has never been one to know the Lord’s thoughts, or discuss them with him, or to move the hands of God by prayer. But strange as it seems, we Christians actually do have within us a portion of the very thoughts and mind of Christ.” (1 Corinthians 2:9-16)
So don’t you see? Those who don’t accept Jesus Christ into their life will never understand faith. They will never understand the language we use. It doesn’t matter how many books you write, how many conferences you speak at, how many debates you try your best to win, or how many other philosophers live on past you and try the same thing you are trying. None of that will ever remove the spirit of God from people’s hearts if they truly believe and have faith and have had a true meaningful relationship with Jesus Christ. Your “battle” will never be won. Christ is the First and Last, the Living One who died, who is now alive forevermore. To be honest Mr. Dawkins I have been praying for you. Not because I’m afraid that you are doing something wrong for other people and will end peoples faith in Christ, but I have been praying for you because I fear for your future. I also have been praying that God would reveal himself to you in one way or another if you allow him to. But that is a choice that has to be made by you alone.
I hope you have a great day,
God bless you
Permalink - Posted Thursday, 21 July 2011 at 06:01 AM
The God of the Gaps
From a philosophical perspective, the mid 19th century (as we all know, Darwin’s era) is an interesting place; not least of all with regard to the notion of the ‘God of the gaps’. This essentially underpinned academic theology in that era – ultimately that whatever could not be understood through reason/logic/scientific enquiry, could always be explained by the existence of God, and there would always be things in the world that could not be understood through reason and science. Although it was clearly more sophisticated than this, the balance between early-modern theology and a post-Enlightenment expanding and increasingly scientific understanding of the natural world was held by the ‘God of the gaps’.
It was and is a fragile basis for faith in God and does nothing to resist the onslaught of scientific evidence and leaves the person clinging on to the theory looking foolish. It is also precisely the kind of theology that Darwin himself encountered when studying to become an Anglican priest. This is the theology that he rejected, although it is still distinctly visible in his reasoning. That is, that when looking for a theory of how to explain the gap between fossil A and fossil B, instead of saying that God was responsible for it, he postulated a theory that explained the transition from A to B: evolution. There was still a gap between the two, and a theory that explained the gap between the two. He had no evidence to substantiate his theory, other than the species/fossils which were given a gap of millions of years in order for evolution to take place. In other words, the theory of evolution is an atheist’s ‘God of the gaps’. Nobody has seen a species evolve and there is no evidence on the scale of a spherical earth versus a flat earth or environmental destruction versus denial, to truly support it. The only real evidence is the theory itself, but because the theory is so persuasive, it attracts apparently intelligent thought. It is harder to think of a greater delusion.
Permalink - Posted Thursday, 21 July 2011 at 05:59 AM
Your talk-talk helps convert towards God. Faith in God is born in the crucible of suffering; experiences of subjection, humiliation, physical torture, burning. It can’t evolve from the crucible of pampering. You’re more of a crucible of pampering type of guy.
I am too, but it is possible for us pampering types to have faith; all it takes is some humility and an appreciation of the puniness of human existence.
Your Converts Corner page has a definite Messianic flavour to it.
Richard, you’re like a kid alone in his playroom, roaring on a rocking horse, and really believing that you’re leading the charge of the light brigade.
Permalink - Posted Thursday, 21 July 2011 at 05:57 AM
I would never be converted to Dawkinsnism
Dear Mr. Dawkins's followers,
If Mr. Dawkins were more intelligent than and as convincing as Einstein, I might deconvert. Of course I am joking, for I think religions are in many cases harmful, too, especially when they compete and want to prove superiority over other religions and beliefs. Also, we could never compare him to Einstein, it is simply absurd. But I would like to provoke your critical thinking:
1) I just do not think that God (the Energy that moves us, the perfection of the Electrons, the never-ending and self-creating pure Energy, and many other things our vocabulary could not grasp) has much to do with all these quarrels. As a matter of fact, He/She and His/Her Messengers inspire both religion and science (you have probably heard of Saint Germain, Francis Bacon, Roger Bacon and many other beings that were clearly inspired by a superior plan). But the interpretation and use of the pure concepts is people's own responsibility.
2) Also, I do not think human beings have good enough instruments to judge everything. Human personalities are barely civilised animals. We can have an approximate idea of things and from time to time we have sudden insights, but we are in a (Plato's) cave and do not know much about REAL reality, although many people (Mr. Dawkins seem to be one of them) have this illusion.
3) The real religious experience is completely personal. Some enlighted Masters have come to talk about a way back home, but they are almost always misunderstood, and people fight because of their own interpretation of the Masters' concepts. Anyway, mistakes cannot and should not invalidate the thing itself. As they say: Try against the dirty water, with an eye to save the baby!
4) Human personality is arrogant. It usually thinks that something it cannot understand either does not exist or is wrong. The intuition, however, indicates the opposite, and that is why we are still alive and have some hope. The Power that allows us to pronounce "I AM" does not need our permission to exist, though.
5) What happens if we try to answer the question: What is it that I AM? If we are honest enough when we ask this question, and if we ask it everyday, until we have a hint of an answer (not provided by someone else, but internally motivated), something different will occur.
6) If we believe in someone so strongly that we start and participate in a foundation bearing his/her name, and we defend this person's ideas without doubting (or with small doubts that do not stop us), what is it other than a religion?
Since I do not believe in religions, but in a Power much more powerful than any religion or man/woman, I would never be converted to Dawkinsnism.
Ricco Lima Salvador, Bahia, Brazil.
Permalink - Posted Thursday, 23 September 2010 at 02:45 AM
Fundamentalism is the Problem
I remember the following letter which I read on Ceefax a few months ago. It seemed to go beyond the god/atheism debate: Deity: Jehovah Prophet: Jesus Christ Evangelists: Archbishop of Canterbury ...
Deity: Random Chance Prophet: Charles Darwin Evangelists: Richard Dawkins ...
The problem is not with religion or atheism. The problem is with fundamentalism. I would also add that the problem is with tv and celebrity from the Archbishop of Cunterry to Richard. Remember how the counsels of opposing sides go for a drink together after court? It's all cunterry and there are bigger divisions between people than whether they believe in god or not.
Permalink - Posted Thursday, 23 September 2010 at 02:41 AM
Just as having faith is not a requirement of science, proving the existence of God is not a requirement of faith. In fact, latter can lead to lack of faith if one remains increasingly unsatisfied while proofs become available.
Notice the statement: "I will not believe in God unless I have proof". This statement is actually disingenuous, because the ultimate external proof of God's existence would overcome the belief/disbelief duality thus subjecting the human mind to an undeniable reality that has to be accepted by all. Like the Sun being accepted globally for what it is. Then you would 'know' God, having no choice in the matter (i.e. no belief, no faith). So faithlessness is a choosing of one's own destiny, which is why many people, whether consciously or instinctually, are very careful about it. Simply put, not everyone prefers the prospect of knowing God through lack of choice or being condemned to faithlessness. Some (i.e. gnostics) claim to have known or experienced God; good to understand that the quality of their knowledge springs from their own choice or free will which is available while God is Unseen.
Unless one truly attempts to understand what faith is, great amounts of energy will be wasted by non-scientists assuming the authority of scientists and on the other hand by scientists preaching non-science (I like how this sounds similar to non-sense). I think a level of maturity is lacking overall. Religious persons need to respect the authority that science has and steer away from appearing ignorant. And those who have no faith should appreciate that there are laws and manners governing spiritual progress. They'd be surprised!
Religion should be concerned with perfection of human character and the betterment of our planet through faith as it is a practice after all and not a theory. What religion holds as advantageous is inspiration through "sacrificing, giving, letting go" which is deeply rooted in the concept of faith, because, having faith requires one to deposit trust (i.e. give). That fuels determination. I recognize that this can be abused, however, atomic energy was also abused and it does not mean that because of it we should curb chemistry and physics.
Finally, in response to one of Prof. Dawkins' interviews where he poses the question: since there are many gods according to people's beliefs, how do you know which one is the right one?
The ultimate faith is in one God as this matches what we observe in ourselves and outer space. All existing dimensions and infinity can be summed up as a whole, leading to One. Also, all numbers result from the existence of One. Whether it is within our logic or in the universe we see One as being associated with the primary, essential, basic, central, core and all-encompassing, etc.
Moreover, the ultimate faith is in the Unseen God as that is the only way faith is possible as I have explained above (please note again, the result of faith can be 'knowing/experiencing' God). Other kinds of faith, in material objects, are subject to the scrutiny of science and are therefore inferior. The Unseen aspect is also precisely the reason why God cannot be catalogued with the rest of the scientific discoveries and is impenetrable.
Thank you for taking this brain exercise. Hopefully it helps with your open-mindedness.
Would like to also point out that we are receptor-conveyors of all possible knowledge and experience. None of it originates from us. Neither do our faculties, enabling reasoning result from us. First, let us start from the "temple" of our knowledge, which is the body with all the faculties. Is it a result of our achievement? Our knowledge could not have preceded the formation of the matter resulting in this capable body. Secondly, how did we achieve the ability to organize, classify, calculate, derive meaning or how did we achieve the ability to use this body as a vehicle? I think through observation of the orderly complexities within us and surrounding us and interaction with with all this. Let us steer away from asking the "Who" question, before recognizing first that logically we cannot attribute this to ourselves. That is the humble start for one's faith in God to occur. The rest is left to the person to seek and find. Then, let us not interpret our discoveries as our ability without respecting that it was taught to us, silently, by nature if you will or God. Only then have we achieved a mature state as human beings being truthful about our reality.
Permalink - Posted Thursday, 23 September 2010 at 02:30 AM
Since you failed to respond to my E-mail of May 26, I wonder if you will have the courage to comment on the following:The theory of evolution is not without its problems. One scientist says this about life starting on its own: Amino acids would have to be arranged in an exact sequence to form a protein . . . just like the letters in a sentence. Mere laws of chemistry and physics cannot do that. The probability of a protein forming by chance would be 10 to the power of 64 to1". Many people assume the theory of evolution to be true. But can it be scientifically proven? Something is considered scientifically true only if it can be repeatedly verified under laboratory conditions. The claim that life sprang up on its own out of a long impersonal process cannot pass this test of truth. That is why evolution remains only a theory. So if you're tempted to doubt the Genesis account of the creation story, consider the alternative. The odds against even a simple protein creating itself are astronomical. How much more reasonable to believe God and His word: "By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible." (Hebrews 11:3). Isn't it more reasonable to believe that God designed and created the universe? (Genesis 1:1). I really cannot perceive of anyone nearing his death not even at the last minute of life, placing themselves in the hand of Jesus Christ. You have got nothing to lose, but everything to gain. Am looking forward to even a short response to the above.
Permalink - Posted Thursday, 23 September 2010 at 02:27 AM
Open Minded Atheist?
I've just watched age of reason and I was just wondering how someone who bangs on so much about being open minded, can be an Atheist?
Permalink - Posted Friday, 03 September 2010 at 01:02 AM
Because We Are Board
Dear converts corner,
I am a scientist and a mathematician who has just watched the program Enemies of Reason.
My questions are simple ...
Who decides what progress is?
What is progress and how is it measured?
In my work I use scientific and mathematical methods to prove out engineering designs. I quantify improvements in design against specific measurable quantities and thus progress the design. All of this is based on me having a prior knowledge of what a desirable outcome is.
Through out the above mentioned program the contribution to human progress made by science was held up as the overriding reason for turning to evidence based assessment and rationalism. All well and good these are things I am glad to accept.
However, unless I'm missing something I have not yet heard what the ultimate goal of the human race is. In the absence of an ultimate goal it is hard to measure progress. Putting a man on the moon is good progress to putting a man on the moon, but can't really be described as a pinnacle of human achievement unless we know what we're measuring against.
My current rationale on all of this is that we are only really doing the things we are because our intellect has evolved to a state in which we are basically bored. For me doing science and maths interests me and stops me being bored. It also earns me money (which provides economists and the like with something to interest them) which I use to do more things to prevent me being bored. For others religion, dancing, drugs or drink do the trick. Therefore the concept of progress is in the eye of the beholder.
It is interesting that methods of boredom alleviation other than science and maths are condemned because they inhibit progress to an unspecified and quantifiably correct goal for the species developed by scientists and mathematicians.
Lighten up and live and let live.
Permalink - Posted Friday, 03 September 2010 at 12:59 AM
Magicians take on the God Delusion
Dear Converts Corner
As a professional magician /mentalist and trained historian I must say I agree with Richard Dawkins desire that we find as much evidence as we can to justify our belief system. Like biologists ,the majority of people in my profession tend to have an atheistic outlook –one need only read Derren Browns comments about The God Delusion being his “favourite book of all time”. I am writing this piece as a response to Professor Dawkins programme - The God Delusion– which is based on his best selling book which Derren found so enlightening.
Despite his lack of reading, Derren Brown, like myself will tell you that magicians and mentalists depend on the human ability to suspend their disbelief. In other words people enjoy a good magic trick – “believing” in the magic – while it is being performed. Of course they will later say how much they enjoyed the “trick” – even though we all know there is no such thing as magic.
Richard Dawkins believes that people of faith live their whole lives like this. Because there is no such thing as God –these people are by definition deluded – they must really know the truth (atheism) - but are suspending their disbelief in God. They are therefore living in ignorance.
If I were an atheist I think I would be looking for another spokesperson to profess my ideas. Professor Dawkins piece was very unconvincing. Indeed at times I was a little embarrassed for one of the UK’s top scientists – who tried to back up his belief (yes atheism is a belief) by talking to a believer who thinks it would be acceptable to execute an adulterer, interview American creationist fundamentalists (who believe the earth is about 5000 years old) and showing pictures of the Catholic faithful at Lourdes – adding that this is the beginning of the slippery slope to suicide bombs on the London tube!
Unfortunately the fact of the matter is that our good professor never tires of setting up straw men only to dismantle them with great relish. These repeated mischaracterisations of faith do the atheist camp no favours. All it does is betray a vitriolic personal agenda. I dislike American Christian fundamentalists for the same reason I dislike Richard Dawkins. He is more interested in proselytising his militant atheism – rather than relying on the rational arguments he claims to cherish. According to Dawkins religion is “anti-rational” – faith is “blind trust” in the absence of evidence. This does not describe my faith – or the faith of any serious believer .While rational argument will not prove Gods existence – serious thinkers from Aristotle and Kant to Descartes and Whitehead and Francis Collins (A biologist who headed the genome project) - have demonstrated that belief in God is very plausible. It is easy and disingenuous to say the least – to put forward a caricature of faith – for it is not real faith at all.
I started this piece with Dawkins insistence that we need evidence. The major flaw of his claim that science demands atheism is that it goes beyond the evidence. By definition God is “supernatural” – i.e. beyond nature – science can neither prove nor disprove His existence. Good scientists know this – including the multitude of scientists (40%) who believe in a Creator God. No doubt these scientists are also deluded ignoramuses
One wonders whether Professor Dawkins is appealing to people’s intelligence or their ignorance. He talks about children being indoctrinated by faith with a debate that could be seen in a GCSE class. He suggests that people are cajoled into staying in their religion. One can just imagine the Church of England Vicar with the recalcitrant teenager “listen Jesus was cool – but if you want to be an atheist –let’s talk about it over a cup of tea and slice of cake”
Dawkins also suggests that atheists are somehow persecuted or misunderstood – even discriminated against. This is a ridiculous suggestion - as academia has been dominated by philosophical naturalism (atheism) for most of the twentieth century largely as a result of the influence of Marxist ideas. Indeed for much of that century half the world was officially atheist – under Communist regimes. I think Richard Dawkins has taken up his fundamentalist atheist crusade because many in the atheist camp (myself included) have moved -and are moving to the Theist camp- including Britain’s most famous atheist – Anthony Flew. The God Delusion is simply a desperate attempt to shore up atheism’s crumbling defences. It is becoming apparent to many intelligent people that a scientific materialist account of everything does not constitute the whole story. Throughout the 20th century a naturalist assumption has been integral to western culture – especially academia. I would argue that it is a fundamental error to see such assumptions as necessarily true. Wisdom begins in wonder – and it increases when we become aware of our pre-suppositions and question them.
Professor Dawkins suggests that believers have an intractable, arrogant idea that they know everything. Nothing could be further from the truth. Although we have inklings of God – in the end God is ultimate mystery. He is awesome by His very nature. An essential component of the spiritual is the experience of wonder. Wasn’t it Einstein who said that the most fundamental mystery about existence is existence itself? He also said that science without religion is lame.
The God delusion has helped to perpetuate two major modern myths. First that religion and science contradict each other. In fact science is a western development precisely because of its Judeo Christian tradition of Theism. People like Isaac Newton sought to understand the “Laws” of nature put into existence by a Creator/Lawgiver. The second myth is that Theists are unthinking drones. If Aristotle, Augustine, Plotinus, Aquinas, Descartes, Kant, Einstein and Collins and thousands of other genius’s are unthinking drones -this would make Richard Dawkins intelligence amoeba like.
Professor Dawkins obviously is a proponent of the scientific method. He is always asking for the “evidence”. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this. The scientific method is sound – but it is not the only route to knowledge. And so we are forced to say that the Professor may be a good scientist – he is however a terrible thinker.
Knowledge comes in two forms – either a posterior (a statement whose truth is based on observation and “evidence”) – also known as inductive reasoning –or a –priori (a statement that is necessarily true, requiring no verification by experience - it is true or false by virtue of the meaning of the words or the laws of logic). This is deductive reasoning. I would like to ask the professor – if science is solely about evidence and hard “facts” - how come mathematics is based upon deductive reasoning – and most science is based on mathematics? After all when the first Apollo spacecraft went to the moon and back – the astronauts were relying on the fact that everything had been worked out in the heads of scientists before it happened in reality. And while we are at it – what is a quark? Is it “real” – or is it a mathematical concept? Does time really stop at the speed of light? How do sub atomic particles “know” what other particles are doing billions of miles away? What is dark matter and dark energy? Apparently these are very real – even though no one has seen them.
I could go on – and I know that these areas in science are usually tackled by physicists and may make super biologist Dawkins uncomfortable. Well I believe he should stick to his biology – because his philosophy and his ability to craft a decent argument is awful. Richard Dawkins is so adamant that Reason is the only way to look at the world – and that it has no room for faith. Oh dear – how misguided can you be. All knowledge, scientific or otherwise, depends on the validity of reasoning – without it no science is true. But I’m afraid strict materialism (and the atheism that goes with it) refutes itself. If thoughts are determined wholly by the motions of atoms in my brain, I have no reason to suppose that my beliefs are true …..and hence no reason to suppose that my brain be composed of atoms.
Philosophical Naturalism/Atheism tries to offer an account of thought – but this account leaves no room for the acts of knowing and insight (used by scientists and everyone else) on which the whole value of our thinking – as a means to truth – depends. And so human Reason itself – the concept that Richard Dawkins claims is the cornerstone of atheism – is in a very real sense supernatural. Not in a “spooky” – or even “spiritual” way – more like in the sense that it won’t fit into nature. Thinking and insight is knowledge sufficiently free from “nature” to be determined only by the truth it knows. Give this up and you give up nature also.
So – I will finish this piece by re iterating that I believe Channel 4: More 4’s programme -The God Delusion- has done the atheist camp no favours whatsoever. Professor Dawkins failed to put forward an intelligent case for militant atheism. But he did try –God bless him- and next time I am celebrating mass I will light a candle for him.
Permalink - Posted Wednesday, 01 September 2010 at 04:18 AM
Having read all the arguments against theism, I am now a firm believer in God, Jesus Christ and the Bible.
Take God out of the equation and what moral code do we have? Who says what is right and wrong? I'm sure Hitler thought he was right in what he did, as did Stalin, et al. Today we have people like Raoul Moat and Derrick Bird doing what they feel is right and who's to say they are wrong?
I don't want to live in Mr Dawkins' world - his 'overpopulated' world that is! One only has to look at the facts to see that there are not too many people in the world, just that this planet is so badly managed...and we have our wonderful 'leaders' to thank for that.
Mr Dawkins, no doubt, would advocate a cull of 'surplus' humans, in which case, I hope he does the decent thing and leads by example.
Permalink - Posted Tuesday, 31 August 2010 at 07:43 PM
Infinity and the infinitesimal
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, where will you put this e-mail? I am not Religious. I am not an Atheist. I am not Agnostic. You, and your convert followers, worship Science and Mathematics (S&M), though many of your converts have little knowledge of either. They take your word for it. Faith? I think of Mathematics as a tool of Science, or as an accomplice in the Science Delusion.
I have thought often of the concept of Infinity and of the Infinitesimal. It seems to me to be the best example of why S&M fails.
You are good at remembering or devising names for things and at describing results from your own or from others experiments. You have described how spots on fishes change according to differing predatory environments. You don't ask why, Science never asks why. It observes and labels.
Perhaps there is something about why that I am missing? I have missed it all my life in that case.
Evolution is a fact. Evolution is miraculous. Evolution is stunning. Evolution is ......., but why does it happen? Why spots? Why fish?
Science enjoys analogy, speaking of Trains falling through gaps as they approach the speed of light or of events at the top and bottom of Lifts that are ? Miles high. The fact that Trains can never actually do this or that Lifts can never be made that big does not perturb their thinking. Nor that of their disciples! Mathematics is even worse, making up equations when it runs out of solutions, and making up new ones when the old ones no longer fit.
I hope you have been unable to label me yet, or put me into Good, or Bad or plain downright ugly! I will leave you with a thought that may help "If things don't alter they'll stop as they are"
Permalink - Posted Saturday, 28 August 2010 at 07:17 PM
Dear Mr Dawkins
Hello. My name is Caroline. I am 16 years old. I am a practising Catholic. It may seem odd that I am writing this but I have something very important to tell you. This is a message for you personally but I am sending it to this email address because it is the only one I could find.
I AM PRAYING FOR YOU.
I do not know what else to do. Everyday I pray to Mary the Mother of God asking her to ask her Son to save your soul. Jesus loves his mother too much to deny her anything and he loves you too. He allowed soldiers to nail him to a cross and kill him so that you, yes you personally, could have eternal happiness.
I don't know what else to say other than to apologise for the abuse you have recieved at the hands of many of my fellow Christians. I sympathise with them because I know that they, like me, can see the tears flowing down Jesus' face which are caused by you and your supporters, but that is really no excuse for the terrible things they say.
All my love and God bless you, you are in my prayers always,
Permalink - Posted Sunday, 22 August 2010 at 01:21 PM