Sunday, October 29, 2006

The God Delusion. By Richard Dawkins - Books - Review - New York Times

The God Delusion. By Richard Dawkins - Books - Review - New York Times

Here's an interesting review of a book I'm not likely to read. I'm a slow reader with a few other books already open, besides which I've only got one toe, if that, left in the doorway to Dawkins' choir hall.

As stated early in the review, and as I understand from other exposure to his ideas, Dawkins allows for some small uncertainty. I think that disqualifies him from out-and-out, strong atheism, and it places me in his camp. Sure, there might be something out there that a deist could be comfortable with, but the traditional God, the one who sits up there monitoring everyone's thoughts while answering all prayers and guiding the seasons, is so improbable as to be dismissed.

The reviewer wonders what sort of event it would take to unsettle an atheist's conviction. Actually, he's more elegant than that:
But what possible evidence could verify or falsify the God hypothesis? The doctrine that we are presided over by a loving deity has become so rounded and elastic that no earthly evil or natural disaster, it seems, can come into collision with it. Nor is it obvious what sort of event might unsettle an atheist's conviction to the contrary.
I'm not sure I go along with (or understand) the bit about doctrinal elasticity, but Ironwolf addressed some possible evidence a couple of days ago.

I have no problem with some religious people. I have known, respected and loved a few of them over time. What I detest is the aggression of the religionist who seems to think he's got a lock on truth to go with a mandate from his god to shove it down my throat.

It's interesting that such people invariably claim belief in an omnipotent god, but at the same time, they limit that god's power to be different things to different people. Religionists are simply involved in a power play, their own or that of some annoying memeplex.

Hat tip: The Revealer

1 comment:

Ironwolf said...

I directly addressed what sort of evidence could "unsettle" me in point 9 of my article Ten Christian Lunacies.