Friday Roundup

  • Imagine the cognitive dissonance that must come from living out of a reaction against (the total world-wide human population now, and every age, has been overwhelmingly religious), a constant protest, the accumulation of bitterness toward the majority, history, the preponderance of belief all around, noted on coin, noted every time one dates something, etched into stone, inseparable from one’s culture and history…a fairly ugly way to live one would think.  Is this where the atheist troll mentality arises, visiting Christian blogs, writing letters to the editor, a perpetually raised fist, a constant scream (or the reverse tactic of the velvet glove, “I’m all about reason and dialogue”) just because they are ignored?  How sad.  One almost wants to say, “Hey, it’s going to be okay, we will pay attention…just stop.”

 “But there’s also a sense, at least in reading Atheist Awakening, that derision toward faith among outspoken atheists is partially a product of accumulated bitterness.  ‘It is hard not to come to the conclusion that atheists have spent a far greater deal of time thinking and writing about religion than religious people ever have of atheists as a group’”.

  • You can’t? I’m shocked…not.
  • How “reason” can lead to concentration camps…
  • Amen.

“As William James taught, the point of learning is not to arrive at truths that somehow match up with reality. The point of learning is to acquire better ways of coping with the world, better ways of acting.”

  • I’m sure he thought his views were based purely in science (biology) and only upon the “facts” and the “evidence”…
  • Good reflection on Ferguson
  • Bad news for those sure they can stereotype every Christian as being young earth creationists…
  • As noted by Ron, more on Nietzsche

“The last century’s graveyards testify to the reality of this danger. Turned away from something truly greater than ourselves, we do not come to rest in a modest ­loyalty to humanity. Instead, as Nietzsche’s and Augustine’s insights into the human condition warn us, we fall into a devotion to subhuman primal powers that reward our service with debasement.”

  • Peter Singer gets it…and it does matter the way we view how ethics are grounded (or not) or conceived—it may be the very difference needed to address climate change, since knowing the “facts” and the “evidence” clearly isn’t working. 
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6 Responses to Friday Roundup

  1. RonH says:

    On the creationism thing… I think I may have posted this in a comment before, but the oft-quoted stat about belief in creationism being connected to low science literacy is bogus.

    To be sure, I'm no YECist. But I get weary of hearing the tired stat trotted out that Americans are scientifically illiterate and creationism is at best the primary symptom or at worst the cause.


  2. Darrell says:


    Yes, I agree. As noted many times, the issue here is not about the “science” or the “facts” or “evidence.”

    But do you see that charge being suggested or asserted in the linked article?

    My take on the article was that the Young earth view is a minority view, so when atheists and secularists focus there, they are only addressing a small group and frankly an easy group to address. When you can only address the weakest and minority view of your opponent, that should tell us something. Why don't they address the historical and majority views or the ones similar to Dr. Francis Collins? Exactly.


  3. RonH says:


    I wasn't responding to something specific in the article you linked. I was just making a topical comment about creationism and statistics.

    YECism is probably more common here in Texas. ICR is based in Dallas now (they used to be near San Diego, IIRC), and the Discovery Institute has a presence here also. There might even be areas where YECism isn't a minority view. Although I don't whether or not that's why those organizations have moved here. That may be more related to textbooks, and the Texas State School Board's inordinate influence on textbook contents.


  4. Darrell says:


    Yes, I'm sure that view is stronger in some areas than others. But if we look world-wide and historically, it is a minority view. But I agree it comes from a narrative (modern fundamentalism), and not from a lack of science information or knowledge of the “facts.”


  5. RonH says:


    If you haven't already read it, I highly recommend Ronald Numbers' book The Creationists. It's a fascinating history of creationism in the US, and probably the most thorough treatment. Seems well-regarded by all sides.


  6. Darrell says:


    Sounds interesting–I will put it on my reading list.


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