Monday, June 2, 2008

New Atheist Rebuttals (2)

Assertion: Dawkins offers into evidence (The God Delusion, pp.16-17) further proof of his assertion that the faithful are unthinking by quoting a letter written to Albert Einstein by the president of a historical society in New Jersey that “so damningly exposes the weakness of the religious mind, it is worth reading twice:”

Response: I fully agree with Dawkins’ critique of the letter in question! When the writer claims that “everyone knows religion is based on Faith, not knowledge,” then goes on to describe how he never admits his religious doubts for fear of “…disturb[ing] and damag[ing] the life and hopes of some fellow human being…,” I am on Dawkins’ side when he says that the letter “drips with intellectual and moral cowardice”(17). It does. The letter writer admits that he is not pursuing the truth. He is pursuing a self-serving piousness that I also believe is intellectually and morally bankrupt. Although the letter writer may represent a large portion of the faith community, he does not represent those who vehemently deny that religion is based on blind faith and not on knowledge.

He does not represent me.

Though the letter writer rolls over and plays dead regarding the reality of the epistemological basis for faith, I do not. He does not represent those who believe that faith is a trust that can comes from knowledge based on evidence. Once again, Mr. Dawkins is cherry-picking his opponents. Doing so relegates him to the same intellectually and morally vacuous position as those he so condescendingly condemns.

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