HBO: Questioning Darwin
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12-02-2014, 09:16 PM
RE: HBO: Questioning Darwin
(12-02-2014 06:43 PM)Diogenes of Mayberry Wrote:  I was amused by the bald pastor talking about how gawd can count the number of hairs on his head. Dude, a 3 year old could do that.

As Sam and RJ pointed out, it is the whole classroom push that is the crux of the issue. Another quote just came to mind, from Karen Armstrong in the Battle for God:

Quote:It is important that we understand the dread and anxiety that lie at the heart of the fundamentalist vision, because only then will we begin to comprehend its passionate rage, its frantic desire to fill the void with certainty, and its conviction of ever-encroaching evil. . . .
. . . Since the late nineteenth century, American fundamentalists had responded to the challenge of modernity by trying to make their faith wholly rational. They had emphasized the virtues of reason and plain sense; they had embraced a sober literalism that eschewed imagination and fantasy. . . . Theirs had been an ethic of separation; fundamentalists had created a counterculture that was supposed to be everything that the Godless mainstream was not: it was a faith that offered cast-iron certainty and hierarchy to challenge the doubts, open questions, and shifting roles of the modern world. . . .
. . . By trying to make their faith scientific and rational, the fundamentalists had pushed religion into an unnatural mode. . . .
. . . [and] by insisting that the truths of Christianity are factual and scientifically demonstrable, [they] have created a caricature of both religion and science.

It just occurred to me that its strange that they want complete and utter certainty about the universe. I mean, the appeal of science is the mystery... The universe is a vast mystery that's brimming with intrigue. But these fundies would rather it wasn't...

It takes all sorts I suppose...

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12-02-2014, 09:16 PM
RE: HBO: Questioning Darwin
(12-02-2014 06:43 PM)Diogenes of Mayberry Wrote:  I was amused by the bald pastor talking about how gawd can count the number of hairs on his head. Dude, a 3 year old could do that.

As Sam and RJ pointed out, it is the whole classroom push that is the crux of the issue. Another quote just came to mind, from Karen Armstrong in the Battle for God:

Quote:It is important that we understand the dread and anxiety that lie at the heart of the fundamentalist vision, because only then will we begin to comprehend its passionate rage, its frantic desire to fill the void with certainty, and its conviction of ever-encroaching evil. . . .
. . . Since the late nineteenth century, American fundamentalists had responded to the challenge of modernity by trying to make their faith wholly rational. They had emphasized the virtues of reason and plain sense; they had embraced a sober literalism that eschewed imagination and fantasy. . . . Theirs had been an ethic of separation; fundamentalists had created a counterculture that was supposed to be everything that the Godless mainstream was not: it was a faith that offered cast-iron certainty and hierarchy to challenge the doubts, open questions, and shifting roles of the modern world. . . .
. . . By trying to make their faith scientific and rational, the fundamentalists had pushed religion into an unnatural mode. . . .
. . . [and] by insisting that the truths of Christianity are factual and scientifically demonstrable, [they] have created a caricature of both religion and science.
This is important. Christians used to admit that their beliefs depended entirely on faith. That's why Luther said that reason is the greatest enemy faith has. He called it a whore. Reacting to the clear contradictions revealed by science, Christians recognize they must combat secular science with their own pseudo-science that sounds sufficiently scientific to fool the sheeple. It's a fight for the minds of the next generation.
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12-02-2014, 09:36 PM
RE: HBO: Questioning Darwin
(12-02-2014 09:16 PM)freetoreason Wrote:  
(12-02-2014 06:43 PM)Diogenes of Mayberry Wrote:  I was amused by the bald pastor talking about how gawd can count the number of hairs on his head. Dude, a 3 year old could do that.

As Sam and RJ pointed out, it is the whole classroom push that is the crux of the issue. Another quote just came to mind, from Karen Armstrong in the Battle for God:
This is important. Christians used to admit that their beliefs depended entirely on faith. That's why Luther said that reason is the greatest enemy faith has. He called it a whore. Reacting to the clear contradictions revealed by science, Christians recognize they must combat secular science with their own pseudo-science that sounds sufficiently scientific to fool the sheeple. It's a fight for the minds of the next generation.

I seem to remember Richard Dawkins saying something like that. That the fundamentalists realize that reason, logic and evidence (or the lack of) are their enemies. But for some reason they think that literally fabricating evidence will make it go away.

Don't they ever realize they are bullshitting themselves?

I don't know the figures, but I'd guess that a lot of atheists are former fundamentalists...

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12-02-2014, 10:18 PM
RE: HBO: Questioning Darwin
(12-02-2014 09:16 PM)freetoreason Wrote:  This is important. Christians used to admit that their beliefs depended entirely on faith. That's why Luther said that reason is the greatest enemy faith has. He called it a whore.

Yes, I remember seeing that quote from Luther previously. He, and legions of other prominent theologians, all echo the same sentiment that reason must be subjugated to faith.

Some related quotations I cited in my book:

“As to your point about the New Testament supporting the Trinity doctrine, that is not entirely true either. Constantine and the Trinitarian Church fathers had backed the Church into a scriptural corner, and once this doctrine had been decided theologians needed to scour the Bible to find justifications for the new position. One problem, it was not there. Oops! Holy Christopher, what were they going to do now? Augustine, another hundred years—give or take a few decades—after the Council of Nicaea, insisted that the Bible needed to be reinterpreted in such a way to make it support the newly proclaimed Trinity doctrine. Or, as he wrote in book I, chapter II of On the Trinity, ‘First, however, we must demonstrate, according to the authority of the Holy Scriptures, whether the faith be so.’

Additionally, given that the Church has historically had a problem with logic, Thomas Aquinas decided to throw in the towel altogether as he concluded that the doctrine could only be proven through faith. As Tommy said in volume 1, question 32 of his masterpiece of theological fertilizer, Summa Theologica, ‘It is impossible to attain to the knowledge of the Trinity by natural reason. . . . Whoever, then, tries to prove the trinity of persons by natural reason, derogates from faith in two ways.’”

“In keeping with Paul’s sentiments, the Church actively repressed independent thought as they tried hard to bury the traditions of Greek philosophy and reasoning in an attempt to solidify their control for the hearts, minds and souls of the very people who might otherwise impudently question their decidedly illogical doctrines. Yale history professor, Ramsay MacMullen, quoted Pope Gregory the Great to beautifully sum up this repressive mentality of the early Church in his book Christianity and Paganism in the Fourth to Eighth Centuries. Professor MacMullen wrote, ‘A voluminous writer, Gregory was nevertheless an enemy to much education, of which he often expressed his distrust: “The wise should be advised to cease from their knowledge,” to be “wise in ignorance, wisely untaught.”’ I think Greggy-boy must have been echoing Saint John Chrysostom, the Archbishop of Constantinople, who said over a hundred years earlier, ‘Restrain our own reasoning, and empty our mind of secular learning, in order to provide a mind swept clear for the reception of divine words.’”

“As I thought, you preach the words, but you have no idea where they came from. Although, one of the three Cappadocian Fathers and a Doctor of the Church, Saint Basil the Bishop of Caesarea would be so proud of you. He said, ‘Let us Christians prefer the simplicity of our faith to the demonstrations of human reason . . . For to spend much time on research about the essence of things would not serve the edification of the Church.’ That’s a nice way of saying if you, the faithful, know too much then you might start to question the divinely ordained authority of your church leaders and the pungent doctrines they impose upon you. Then they might have to do something drastic, like excommunicate you or strap you to a rack and force you to rethink the error of your ways,” Jeff concluded irreverently.

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