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Comments

Steven Carr

Why is Flew rambling on about Gilvert Ryle?

Here is what Dawkins writes on page 18 of The God Delusion

'A theist believes in a supernatural intelligence who in addition to his main work of creating the universe in the first place, is still around to oversee and and influence the subsequent fate of his initial creation... A deist too believes in a supernatural intelligence, but one whose activities were confined to setting up the laws that govern the universe in the first place.

The deist God never intervenes thereafter, and certainly has no specific interest in human affairs.'

Here is what Flew writes in his review :-

'A less important point which needs to be made in this piece is that although the index of The God Delusion notes six references to Deism it provides no definition of the word 'deism'

The book that Roy Varghese wrote for Flew contains no definition of the word 'deism' and how it differs from theism.

Why should it? Varghese is not a deist. Why should he define 'deism'. It is Flew who is a deist.

Flew seems to have forgotten what is in his 'own' book... He seems to have forgotten that it is his 'own' book that does not define 'deism'.

He certainly has no idea what is in The God Delusion, apart from what can be got by reading the index.

But in one last attempt to ruin his reputation, Flew attacks Dawkins for a fault in Flew's own book.

Rick

If I were to label anyone a bigot, and I have no real urge to do so, then the people who argue all day about the existence or not of a god would come close. Never have I seen such a waste of breath and intolerance for each other's beliefs. It seems to revolve around the idea that one man can remove another's god. After that, there is the multitude of personal projections added to the mix: one man hates christians because he's gay and it provides an easy vent for his anger; another man hates christians becasue he was abused by a priest; another hates christians because they seem to be gentle people and he likes to fight because he's angry about something else; another man hates athiests because he cannot muster the faith required by his beliefs; another hates non-believers because one of his family was killed/raped/abused by a non believer; on and on it goes and none of it has anything to do with the existence of god and everything to do with the mental state and inability of the person to move on. It's ludicris.

If Richard Whoever says my god doesn't exist, does that mean he doesn't? If a tree falls in the woods and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound? If a miracle happens in a city you've never heard of, to a person you never knew existed, did the miracle not happen? Why would I get so worked up about it? Why would I care if I was the only disciple of my god?

Might be time to embrace maturity, people. No one will ever decipher the bible in one way, for all, for certain. That's the real delusion: thinking it can be done.

Live your beliefs, don't spend all day arguing over the internet.

Eric Olthwaite

Antony Flew:

"...although the index of The God Delusion notes six references to Deism it provides no definition of the word 'deism'"

The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins:

"Let's remind ourselves of the terminology. A theist believes in a supernatural intelligence who, in addition to his main work of creating the universe in the first place, is still around to oversee and influence the subsequent fate of his initial creation... A deist, too, believes in a supernatural intelligence, but one whose activities were confined to setting up the laws that govern the universe in the first place... Pantheists don't believe in a supernatural God at all, but use the word God as a non-supernatural synonym for Nature, or for the Universe, or for the lawfulness that governs its workings... Deists differ from theists in that their god does not answer prayers... Deists differ from pantheists in that the deist God is some kind of cosmic intelligence, rather than the pantheist's metaphoric or poetic synonym for the laws of the universe. Pantheism is sexed-up atheism. Deism is watered-down theism."

Is he upset because the definition was clearly laid out in the body of the text and not in the index?

peter

Anthony Flew off the handle this time, didn't he.

Rick says:

"If a miracle happens in a city you've never heard of, to a person you never knew existed, did the miracle not happen?"

You are right Rick. The miracle did not happen!

Ha Ha Ha!!!!

Danyl Mclauchlan

Its also strange that Flew writes

[Dawkins] makes no mention of Einstein’s most relevant report: namely, that the integrated complexity of the world of physics has led him to believe that there must be a Divine Intelligence behind it.

. . . when much of the first chapter of The God Delusion is devoted to explicitly addressing the topic of Einstein and his religious beliefs.

His 'take down' (I love the way Ian always uses the language of an eight year old watching a wrestling match) is doubtless compelling if you haven't read Dawkin's book and don't have a few seconds to check out the claims made against it though.

peter

Yes Danyl

I find Anthony Flew very "once light over" with this appraisal.

Raving on like an old fool .. under exactly what obligation was Richard Dawkins to mail him?

I think Flew is letting his mortality getting the better of him.

James

Get an Objectivist Atheist like Lenoard Piekoff,David Kelly or even our own Lindsay Perigo involved and God would be toast in seconds....as they have rendered him in the past...Dawkins lacks the killer philosopy that Objectivism is to drive a stake through the religious heart...

george

Everybody's mortality will get the better of them, Peter.

ropata

Flew was perceptive with this paragraph:

This whole business makes all too clear that Dawkins is not interested in the truth as such but is primarily concerned to discredit an ideological opponent by any available means. That would itself constitute sufficient reason for suspecting that the whole enterprise of The God Delusion was not, as it at least pretended to be, an attempt to discover and spread knowledge of the existence or non-existence of God but rather an attempt – an extremely successful one – to spread the author’s own convictions in this area.
Here we see the disciples of Dawkins following his approach: not addressing the substance of the argument, but nit-picking around the edges, and attempting to smear one's opponent.

Flew's appraisal finds that Dawkins did not actually address the substance of Einstein's deism. Also Flew obviously found Dawkin's 'definition' of deism to be hopelessly inadequate.. "This enable Dawkins in his references to Deism to suggest that Deists are a miscellany of believers in this and that"

Dear oh dear. You have to do better than that, atheists.

peter

Ropata, like Anthony Flew you do not get it. Discrediting ideological opponents is a necearry part of blowing away false beliefs about supernatural phenomena.

And my goodness me, Dawkins is spreading his own convictions! How unique!

Ropata I think it is you saying:

"Here we see the disciples of Dawkins following his approach: not addressing the substance of the argument, but nit-picking around the edges, and attempting to smear one's opponent."

This is where the fundamentalist Christians have a problem. They are able to justify their beliefs in an overview fashion but the find close and honest scrutiny too much to handle

dad4justice

honestly peter what is "too much to handle' is counting how many million times you use the phrase "fundamental Christian."

Ha ha ha !!!

peter

Daddy 4

The term is "Christian fundamentalist" or sometimes "Extreme Right Wing Christian Fundamentalist".

"Fundamentalist" works fine if you want to describe fundamenatalists of all religions - and they do share some common characteristics. I would not want Christian fundamentalists to think that they are really that different from fundamentalists of other religions.

I find the terminology useful because it applies to so many views expressed by so many subscribers.

There are a few exceptions and you would be one Daddy 4. I have no idea of your beliefs and it is far from clear that other fundamentalists would want to own you.

illuminatedtiger

Howdy, "Batman".

I saw the Dark Knight last night and I must say that you've got a SHITLOAD of work to do if you want to be anywhere close to his exacting standards.

dad4justice

Did peter ride into town on the back of the glowing tiger as the dark knight?

"As the world grows in anxiety and hopelessness, the Lord never worries and neither should who are abiding in Him" - Sabrina Coulston.

peter

Illuminated tiger..

I would keep away from the Nuclear Power Plant - you must get that aura under control.

Daddy 4 - too many dark nights for you. Keep the light on.

peter

Lately there was suggestion that Christians are not so often in gaol. Look at this:

http://www.stuff.co.nz/4639722a11.html

Many from Marylands have been in gaol.. presumably thanks to those in charge - is that the suggestion or not?

dad4justice

Wrong peter dark nights are absent, light everywhere. As a Christian who has learnt to align my life with my values I have no darkness. You should try it, because you're always guaranteed a good night sleep.

Regards
Peter B

peter

A good night's sleep is not beyond a normal person Daddy 4. Why clutter your life with religion.

dad4justice

peter you clutter this blog with insinuations of religion when you cannot understand spiritual unity is a personal characteristic. Unlike you, who is full of hatred and venom I work at the maintenance of the special unity and put my priorities to the best of my ability in Christ.I uphold what is now and I don't try to create it. I prefer to keep it because it is holy and it is sacred.
God bless you peter.

Bamm Bamm

Why not have some home grown Christian Terrorist events right here in little ol' NZ? That will sort things out.

Belief in God is delusional, it has been from before the time of Ahkenaten-amun.

Ian Wishart would spend his time better on NZ Radio discussing real issues instead of getting himself wet over God.

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