14th August 2013

“The popular meme of Dawkins The Bigot is the creation of the Christian Creationist Right, who loathe him for the power of his advocacy of the idea that Darwinian natural selection is the sole creator of our living world.”

Kevin Myers

10 Responses to “14th August 2013”

  1. Skepticsteve Says:

    For those few who may have missed it, this is the recent statement from Richard Dawkins that has caused all imaginary hell to break loose: “All the world’s Muslims have fewer Nobel Prizes than Trinity College, Cambridge. They did great things in the Middle Ages, though.” Apparently, many adherents to various superstitions took offense to Dawkins actually stating a verifiable fact. “How dare Dawkins point out that backwardness and superstition do not lead to scientific or cultural advancement.”

  2. Dan Says:

    The thing is, Darwinian natural selection ISN’T the sole creator of our living world. Neutral drift contributed a good bit to it also.

  3. holysmokes Says:

    Darwinian natural selection did not create the living world, nor is there any evidence to support that notion. Evolution explains the drive for change over time which likely came AFTER abiogenesis. ….two very events.

  4. holysmokes Says:

    …Two very different events, rather.

  5. Dan Says:

    Holysmokes, I thought that Myers was referring to creating the living world (as we know it; IOW crafting the modern living world through evolution). If he meant abiogenesis, that would indeed have been false…

  6. Sinjin Smythe Says:

    Context: Myers is a journalist. I don’t tink the validity of his statment is necessarily upset in the statement “…Darwinian natural selection is the sole creator…”.

    “…Dawkins The Bigot …” is a fabrication of the Christian right and it is just one of many such fabrications where anyone who points out the shortcomings of Christian faith is summarily dubbed a bad guy of some sort.

    Surely given the fact that Myers is a journalist he can be given some latitude on what the “sole creator” is or isn’t with respect to Creationists and their outlandish claim that some supernatural deity popped humans and dinosaurs onto the planets surface in the same week 6,000 to 10,000 years ago?

  7. D Says:

    More Context:
    “Kevin Myers: Myth of Dawkins as an Intolerant, Atheist Crusader Is Just That — Myth – Independent.ie.” Independent.ie. Accessed August 14, 2013. http://www.independent.ie/opinion/columnists/kevin-myers/kevin-myers-myth-of-dawkins-as-an-intolerant-atheist-crusader-is-just-that-myth-26740781.html.

  8. Jeff Says:

    It is by faith alone that we can believe in God, and accept that explanation for the world around us. It is by reason alone that we can accept the evidence contained in that world and overcome our belief. In other words, if we have faith, we can ignore the faculties given by that God, and accept him…

  9. Sinjin Smythe Says:

    TELEGRAPH ARTICLE CALLING ATHEISTS MENTALLY ILL:

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/seanthomas/100231060/are-atheists-mentally-ill/#disqus_thread

    James St John Smythe
    Today 10:03 AM

    “vital faculty of faith”

    I suppose you could say atheists have “faith” in reason, evidence, proof, logic, research, et cetera.

    This is of course very different than faith in the supernatural, in ghosts, goblins, devils, angels, and other hallucinations.

    I suspect that the overwhelming body of professional psychologists and psychiatrists will deem one group as closer to mental illness than the other?

    pentagua

    Today 10:06 AM

    As a Christian I have “faith” in reason, evidence, proof, logic, research, et cetera. What I cannot understand is the faith that says such things only belong to atheists.

    sinjin7

    30 minutes ago

    Where a theist has a belief in god or gods, and an atheist has not, and where faith is being used to suggest a god based belief system, what faith says that reason, evidence, proof, logic, research, et cetera belongs to atheists or people without belief in gods?

    You presume something, at least, that I have not said.

    Perhaps you would understand if you began to think that atheism is not a belief system, but a lack of such system.

  10. D Says:

    @Sinjin
    The term “faith” is being used incorrectly. The supposition that “atheists have “faith” in reason, evidence, proof, logic, research, et cetera.” is a wrong supposition.

    Reason, evidence, proof, logic, research, etc. are tools to knowledge. While “faith” is a knowledge claim, but it is wholly unsuited as a path to knowledge and it is wrong to make knowledge claims based on faith. As Peter Boghossian puts it, “Faith is pretending to know things you don’t know.” Things like evidence, proof, logic, research, etc remove the need to pretend to know.

    Faith also carries with it the element of dogma that obliges the faithful to make sense of it, despite any contradictory problems posed by reason, proof, logic, research, etc. Without having faith in something and its requisite obligation to uphold it against all odds, a person has the freedom to tentatively accept things supported by evidence as knowledge, with some degree of certainty and alter them later in light of new evidence, reason, proof, etc. Many people, most often the faithful, incorrectly equate faith with knowledge or “tentative acceptance” of justified knowledge.

    W.K. Clifford makes this point in Part I. of “The Ethics of Belief”. “The question of right or wrong has to do with the origin of his belief, not the matter of it; not what it was, but how he got it; not whether it turned out to be true or false, but whether he had a right to believe on such evidence as was before him.”

    Faith never provides a right to believe because it does not satisfy the duty of inquiry required by knowledge.