Does Dawkins Fear Philosophy?
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12-12-2011, 09:25 AM
RE: Does Dawkins Fear Philosophy?
Quote:I suggest you re-read this carefully:
Quote:"Should a conflict arise between the witness of the Holy Spirit to the fundamental truth of the Christian faith and beliefs based on argument and evidence, then it is the former which must take precedence over the latter, not vice versa." - Wm. L. Craig

Debating someone who does not believe in argument and evidence is pointless.

the part "conflict arise between the witness of the Holy Spirit to the fundamental truth of the Christian faith" can be confusing. I understood it when you mentioned the next part about, "Debating someone...."

The wording can throw you off quite quickly.

Idiot: : a foolish or stupid person
— idiot adjective
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12-12-2011, 09:27 AM
RE: Does Dawkins Fear Philosophy?
(12-12-2011 09:16 AM)Chas Wrote:  I suggest you re-read this carefully:
[quote]
"Should a conflict arise between the witness of the Holy Spirit to the fundamental truth of the Christian faith and beliefs based on argument and evidence, then it is the former which must take precedence over the latter, not vice versa." - Wm. L. Craig

Debating someone who does not believe in argument and evidence is pointless.

Sorry, reading it three times doesn't change my position. Other theists (outside the Church of England) believe this too. I believed it for many years. Again, the dumb blonde woman I referred to and the insane Ted Haggard would use that exact same phrase if they were literate enough to think of it. Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens obviously didn't have a problem agreeing to debate WLC, and I'm sure they are well familiarized with his stance.

I understand your point, Chas. I can even agree with it. I'm left with feeling like it's a hollow victory. In my faulty logic, after reading the quote now 6 times, I still come to the conclusion that, Therefore, Dawkins will only debate people that he can easily tear down. Or...he will only "debate" a True Believer that he can ambush.

Here's where I'm coming from. I devoured his "God Delusion." It's a big part of why I'm even conversing with you today. But, his arguments against knowing God from philosophy feel weak to me. I hoped by debating a Christian Philosopher he could have somehow clarified his points, making them stronger.

It's all good though. This was a good lesson for me as a nascent atheist. I had put Dawkins on too high a pedestal, much as I used to put WLC on a pedestal. In the end, both are just flawed, arrogant men and frankly I have little time for such arrogance, so I'm probably done trying to figure this out in my head. Therefore, I'll just accept your answer as being sufficient.

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12-12-2011, 09:32 AM (This post was last modified: 12-12-2011 09:45 AM by Chas.)
RE: Does Dawkins Fear Philosophy?

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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12-12-2011, 11:53 AM
RE: Does Dawkins Fear Philosophy?
(12-12-2011 08:26 AM)Clint Barnett Wrote:  To the question of the post topic. I'm not sure if he fears philosophy. I have heard most of the WLC debates. He poisons the well like a champ during all his debates. He uses the same content even though he is corrected constantly. This is probably because he is following his notes without ever editing. Just going on the attitude I have seen Dawkins to have, I'd say he didn't want to talk to a wall. WLC reminds me of a wall or fence post. No matter how much you tell him something he refuses to absorb any of it (like most theists). He still uses out dated scientific data to back some of his claims (like nearly all theists). I would have to walk away from WLC too he annoys me more so than most theists.

I think the main problem of debates between WLC and atheists is that, as you say, WLC uses the exact same argument every time... and atheists are never prepared for it! There are plenty of resources on how to debate WLC properly, but I guess atheists are too busy to look them up and learn them.

The other problem is that there are college classes on apologetics. Where do atheists learn their arguments? The internet. You have to independently research the atheist opinion by reading it from your fellow atheists (at the very least God Is Not Great, The God Delusion, and The End of Faith) and hearing it from debates. There is no class for atheist studies or "atheology". And even if there were such a class, it would never become a college major (you can get a doctorate in theology).

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12-12-2011, 11:59 AM
RE: Does Dawkins Fear Philosophy?
(12-12-2011 11:53 AM)Starcrash Wrote:  I think the main problem of debates between WLC and atheists is that, as you say, WLC uses the exact same argument every time... and atheists are [i]

That's just silly. Of course Dawkins is prepared for the arguments, but they're just pointless because WLC ignores them.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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12-12-2011, 01:49 PM
RE: Does Dawkins Fear Philosophy?
(12-12-2011 09:27 AM)Erxomai Wrote:  It's all good though. This was a good lesson for me as a nascent atheist. I had put Dawkins on too high a pedestal, much as I used to put WLC on a pedestal. In the end, both are just flawed, arrogant men and frankly I have little time for such arrogance, so I'm probably done trying to figure this out in my head. Therefore, I'll just accept your answer as being sufficient.

Give my man Harris a try?
Harris on TED
The reason I didn't like Dawkins at first is because he sure ain't a theologian. He's a good cat, he's just "anti-religion;" well, and he's an asshole like Cantor. Tongue

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12-12-2011, 02:07 PM
RE: Does Dawkins Fear Philosophy?
(12-12-2011 01:49 PM)houseofcantor Wrote:  
(12-12-2011 09:27 AM)Erxomai Wrote:  It's all good though. This was a good lesson for me as a nascent atheist. I had put Dawkins on too high a pedestal, much as I used to put WLC on a pedestal. In the end, both are just flawed, arrogant men and frankly I have little time for such arrogance, so I'm probably done trying to figure this out in my head. Therefore, I'll just accept your answer as being sufficient.

Give my man Harris a try?
Harris on TED
The reason I didn't like Dawkins at first is because he sure ain't a theologian. He's a good cat, he's just "anti-religion;" well, and he's an asshole like Cantor. Tongue

Dawkins is an evolutionary biologist. He's an atheist. He argues from a scientific viewpoint and concludes that there is no evidence for any gods.

Why do you want him to be a theologian?

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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12-12-2011, 02:15 PM
RE: Does Dawkins Fear Philosophy?
I think the reason Dawkins wouldn't want to debate this guy is simply because this guy in particular uses the exact same argument over and over again. I don't think it has anything to do with only wanting to debate idiots, as some would say this other fellow falls into that same category. WLC reads from a script, an old script, that never changes. At least with the other people he debated, they answered from their experience. WLC only went so far and then stopped. He thinks he's won and doesn't want to look any further. I assume.

And PIGS CAN SING.


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12-12-2011, 04:28 PM (This post was last modified: 12-12-2011 04:31 PM by houseofcantor.)
RE: Does Dawkins Fear Philosophy?
(12-12-2011 02:07 PM)Chas Wrote:  Dawkins is an evolutionary biologist. He's an atheist. He argues from a scientific viewpoint and concludes that there is no evidence for any gods.

Why do you want him to be a theologian?

He wants to be a theologian, and he ain't any good at it; what I'm saying. Wink
PIG ABUSE! Tongue

I felt like slapping that dude - that thing will eat you, silly. Tongue

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12-12-2011, 04:39 PM (This post was last modified: 12-12-2011 04:45 PM by Chas.)
RE: Does Dawkins Fear Philosophy?
(12-12-2011 04:28 PM)houseofcantor Wrote:  
(12-12-2011 02:07 PM)Chas Wrote:  Dawkins is an evolutionary biologist. He's an atheist. He argues from a scientific viewpoint and concludes that there is no evidence for any gods.

Why do you want him to be a theologian?

He wants to be a theologian, and he ain't any good at it; what I'm saying. Wink

No, he doesn't want to be a theologian.
Quote:We who doubt that "theology" is a subject at all, or who compare it with the study of leprechauns, are eagerly hoping to be proved wrong. Of course, university departments of theology house many excellent scholars of history, linguistics, literature, ecclesiastical art and music, archaeology, psychology, anthropology, sociology, iconology, and other worthwhile and important subjects. These academics would be welcomed into appropriate departments elsewhere in the university. But as for theology itself, defined as "the organised body of knowledge dealing with the nature, attributes, and governance of God", a positive case now needs to be made that it has any real content at all, and that it has any place in today's universities.
- Richard Dawkins
Quote:What has theology ever said that is of the smallest use to anybody? When has theology ever said anything that is demonstrably true and is not obvious? I have listened to theologians, read them, debated against them. I have never heard any of them ever say anything of the smallest use, anything that was not either platitudinously obvious or downright false. If all the achievements of scientists were wiped out tomorrow, there would be no doctors but witch doctors, no transport faster than horses, no computers, no printed books, no agriculture beyond subsistence peasant farming. If all the achievements of theologians were wiped out tomorrow, would anyone notice the smallest difference?
- Richard Dawkins

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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