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Is Richard Dawkins a Fantantical Atheist?


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#31    Serpentine

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 02:18 PM

Professor Dawkins is a teacher at heart.

http://www.bbc.co.uk...he-eye/454.html



Why have you been so poorly taught?


#32    David Henson

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 03:50 PM

View Postkeithisco, on 11 February 2013 - 08:24 PM, said:

I think the point that he is making is that raising a child to believe in a Supernatural Omnipotent Being, thereby ignoring and / or denigrating the real advances that Science has made in improving the lives of mankind (with no Religious input), is utterly devoid of logic and reason. It is a "Stunting" of real scientific endeavour

Then, for him it is a personal and emotional fixation. He used to be Christian?

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#33    David Henson

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 03:55 PM

View PostReligulous, on 12 February 2013 - 04:05 AM, said:

He is an individual who simply wants the truth, and is intolerable of nonsense. What is wrong with that? I am a huge fan of his work -- I have an immense amount of respect for him both as a person, and as a scientist. Take into consideration the amount of atrocities carried out, and still being carried out, in the name of religion. It is banal, and irrelevant to modern society.

The atrocities carried out, and still being carried out, in the name of religion? You mean Hiroshima, Nagasaki, biological, chemical, thermonuclear war? Wait. That isn't religion. As much as I despise all organized religion, and I do despise it all, no religious atrocity you can think of would have been perpetrated without the political.

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#34    David Henson

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 04:04 PM

View Postali smack, on 13 February 2013 - 03:43 AM, said:

I don't care for religion myself but even I think some of the things he says are a bit extreme.

I don't care for religion either, but to me the thing about Dawkins is that he's just the other side of the coin. A televangelist for the metaphysical experimentation called evolutionary theory.

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#35    JesseCuster

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 05:34 PM

View PostDavid Henson, on 14 February 2013 - 03:55 PM, said:

The atrocities carried out, and still being carried out, in the name of religion? You mean Hiroshima, Nagasaki, biological, chemical, thermonuclear war? Wait. That isn't religion.
Did the person you responded mention any of those things?  No, so this is what they call a strawman.

Perhaps he means things like the worldwide coverup of countless cases of child rape by the Catholic Church, the enabling of child rapists to continue their crimes by simply moving them to new parishes, the bullying of raped children into preventing them from reporting the crimes, etc.  That was done very much in the name of Catholicism - it was a concerted effort to maintain the reputation and image of that religion.

Or the fact that the Catholic Church helps perpetuate the AIDS epidemic because of their absolutist stance on contraception they teach to their members in Africa.

Or the various terrorist atrocities carried in the name of religion.  I know it's trendy to absolve religion of any responsibility in Islamist terrorism, but in lots of these cases it is an ugly mixture of extremist religion and extremist politics, neither one nor the other.

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As much as I despise all organized religion, and I do despise it all, no religious atrocity you can think of would have been perpetrated without the political.
Just because politics is involved in an atrocity does not absolve the religious element from blame.  I don't avoid the blame for carrying out an armed robbery because the illegal arms dealer sold me the weapons and I couldn't have perpetrated the crime without him.

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#36    ambelamba

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 11:19 PM

Fanatical? Maybe. But he sounds more like angry and frustrated.

They came with a Bible and their religion. stole our land, crushed our spirit, and now they tell us we should be thankful to the Lord for being saved.

-Chief Pontiac (1718-1769)

#37    David Henson

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 03:36 AM

View PostArchimedes, on 14 February 2013 - 05:34 PM, said:

Did the person you responded mention any of those things?  No, so this is what they call a strawman.

It was a remark upon science. Skeptics often cite the atrocities of religion, which are many, but overlook the atrocities of science.

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#38    Rlyeh

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 06:11 AM

View PostDavid Henson, on 15 February 2013 - 03:36 AM, said:

It was a remark upon science. Skeptics often cite the atrocities of religion, which are many, but overlook the atrocities of science.
Only problem is it wasn't science that dropped bombs on people.


#39    David Henson

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 07:10 AM

View PostRlyeh, on 15 February 2013 - 06:11 AM, said:

Only problem is it wasn't science that dropped bombs on people.

Religion didn't commit atrocities either. Religious people and people of science committed the atrocities. The problem is people, not religion or science.

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#40    Zaphod222

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 07:23 AM

View Postali smack, on 11 February 2013 - 08:08 PM, said:

I am not religious myself and to be frank it doesn't interest me. But I have never understood Richard Dawkins fanatical hatred and ( Let's be frank here )
Ignorance of religion. And it isn't just Christianity he hates. He hates Islam, Judaism and even Buddhism.
He has very little knowledge of religion and is very arrogant with his views.
He does have all the bench marks of a fanatic.
I wonder why he has such hatred of religion.

I do not agree with your premise. I do not see "hatred" in what Dawkins says, and I think to accuse an atheist of being "fanatical" is sort of a contradiction in terms. You can be a fanatical believer; but a "fanatical" disbeliever?? Does not make sense.

And to understand the motivation to be against religion, just open your daily newspaper and see the slew of daily suicide bombings, beheadings, murders etc. by fanatical believers (albeit mostly of one particular religion), all in a stupid effort to please their god.

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#41    eight bits

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 11:52 AM

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  all in a stupid effort to please their god.

That would be an inference on your part. The atrocities you mention are political activities. Those who carry them out are rightly seen as politicians.

High among the rules of politics is to abandon candor about your actual motives for doing things. Pretext is the name for the rationale you give instead of a candid explanation. Religion, then, offers pretexts for political action. Nothing new there, by the way.

There is a danger in mislabeling political activity as worship. For one thing, you start thinking that you can reason with people who protest educational policy by throwing acid in a schoolgirl's face. How satisfying to fantasize that a sharper counterapologetics will prevent further excesses. It is much easier to prattle on about sky-faeries than to do something effective.

Funny isn't it? The atheist gloss on prayer is that it's a way to feel you're doing something about a problem when you aren't doing anything at all about it.

The girl got burned because she threatened somebody's earthly interests. This is no less than the case than schoolgirls of another generation in the American South (or for that matter, Boston Massachusetts) who enrolled at a racially desgregated public school, and thereby threatened somebody's interests.

The differences are that American racial segregation relied on non-religious pretexts, and that we were rich enough to deploy federal marshalls to walk the little girls to school, and had the political will to do just that. And the politicans who did use religion to justify their political activity? Many of them were allied with the schoolgirls and devoted to non-violent political means, even in the face of violent opposition. A lot of them were ministers and the "liberal" clergy of many faiths.

All in a stupid effort to please their God? No, nothing that sweet and simple.

Edited by eight bits, 15 February 2013 - 11:58 AM.

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