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Monday, December 15, 2008

Richard Dawkins - Children in the Atheist’s Den, part 8 of 8

Please note that this essay is being moved and will be shortly reposted at True Freethinker

1 comment:

  1. I apologize for the length of this response, but I write because you are trying to fight the good fight.

    As for what aliens would think of us, I think Socrates said it best. A typical craftsman/technician/scientist in one very narrow field confidently declares that he has authority and knowledge to make statements in any field that they have not been trained in. The craftsman/technician/scientist who does this is an ignorant fool that doesn't see his own ignorance. The wise man recognizes his ignorance and replaces assertions of truth with earnest questions.

    WRT to what would happen if aliens came to see us, we just don't know, but if they are anything like the way colonialists (even friendly ones) were in our world, Dawkin's pronouncements would be utterly laughable. As much as Dawkins would like it to be the case, the human ego is not the center of the universe. Our colonialists never praised the science of "primitive humans", however they have praised their cultures. The whole "Nobel Savage" myth is a direct result of this idealization. So even if the naturalistic world view is correct, we would be more impressive to our alien visitors if we spent more effort on our moral and spiritual foundations than science.

    WRT science, I think you misunderstand that faith means. Faith is nothing more than justified trust. Do you have faith in your wife? Why? I'm willing to bet you can't come up with a single reason to have faith in's an accumulation of lifetime experiences that have given you faith in her. The same can be said about science, and of God. Actually, if you look at the world "Faith" in the original Greek bible, there are two words for "Faith" 1) I believe because my parents did, 2) I believe I have sufficient evidence. Faith (1) is how Greeks described their belief in the gods. Faith (1) is always condemmed by the Bible. Faith (2) is always used to describe faith in God. Faith (2) may also be used to describe faith in science. The key problem with Dawkins and friends is not their Faith (2) in science, it's that they often take the "Socratean Leap of Craftsman Arrogance" to assume that their speculations qualify as science. Faith in arrogance is nothing more than Faith (1) (i.e. I believe it because my imagination says it must be so).

    WRT evolution and IE, you might want to read up on Genesis 1. According to Genesis, God only interevened 3 timed during creation. They are:
    (1) He created the heavens and the earth.
    (2) He created the first life.
    (3) He created man and women and breathed the Image of God into them.
    In every other case, he said "let their be". Let their be light (visible on the earth). Let the water separate (on earth into water vapour and ocean). Let fishes appear, etc.
    If taken from the perspective of earth, Genesis 1 follows precisely the evolutionary pattern that God "allowed to be", and this pattern is backed up by science. We would
    be assuming too much to assume that God used intelligent design anywhere else other than (1), (2), and (3). At the very least, such speculation is not Biblically supported.

    -- Ronald Davies


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