Bardiness

"..a bardy view!"

Richard Dawkins – the Prophet of Atheism

Are atheists nice people? I ask because if Richard Dawkins
is representative of them, then they are decidedly dislikeable. Indeed, if atheism
was a religion he would be its chief prophet.

A prophet, incidentally, whose only message is that when you're
dead, you're dead. That's a prophet with a hopeless case and certainly not my
idea of one.

No, I want my prophets to give some semblance of hope – I'm not
asking for Paradise in the next world, but just the off-chance that I might get
another chance. That's not too much to ask is it?

It's seems like a perfectly reasonable human trait to believe
that the sum of our unique qualities will not end up as fossil fuel and that our
soul (if we have one) will not get buried along with them.

Dawkins is a secularist. A person who believes that religion
should be excluded from all civil affairs and education. It is a paradox, because
without education, we would be unable to determine whether or not secularism
had a place in society. Without education we would be unable to argue the pros
and cons, to evaluate, to choose, to be in essence, free thinking individuals.

If Dawkins had his way, religious teaching would be banned
from schools, atheism would be the default, and if that isn't fundamentalism
then what is?

Dawkins is on a crusade. An unholy one as it turns out, and
woe betide anyone who disagrees with him. His opponents are immediately castigated
as blind and stupid. His mission is to educate us, to abandon our beliefs, to
turn us all into a follower of his cause. The mission of his foundation is
"for Reason and Science to support scientific education, critical thinking
and evidence-based understanding of the natural world in the quest to overcome
religious fundamentalism, superstition, intolerance and suffering."

Nothing wrong with that, except that it implies we’re either
with him or against him. That because we are religious we are branded as fundamentalist,
superstitious and intolerant beings that condone suffering because we are
ignorant.

Well, there are extremists in all religions, some with violent
intent, and many because of poor education and prone to influence by others
promoting a specific agenda. Surely therefore it would make sense to invest resources
in educating such people, as opposed to Dawkins' view, that religious education
should be banned altogether.

The answer isn't to replace one fundamentalism with another.
Extreme atheists may not be suicidal bombers, nor terrorists in the conventional
sense, but terrorise they do, in their own ignorant way. And they use their
fundamentalist beliefs to convert the weak.

There appears something insidious about a movement which
attempts to take away all that is held dear from people who gain strength and
hope by believing in God.

For millions of people around the world, attending church is
not a duty, but a joy. It is being part of a congregation, to worship and give
thanks, to praise, to sing, to pray, to be part of a community.

To live in the hope that there is something greater.To give
hope.To get hope.To pray for the sick; to light a candle for a departed loved
one; to give thanks for their life. To express their love.

Richard Dawkins would take all that away. In Dawkins World
we would all be worshipping at the temple of science. Imagination would be
lost. If it's not proven then it is not fact. If it's not fact, then it is
superstitious ignorance. We would all be Humanists, living our lives based on
the premise that the basic concept of humanity garnered over thousands of years
of intellectual development will ensure our humanity to mankind and each other.
That all the world's ills will eventually be just a lesson taught in a history
class.

A world that instead of seeking solace from the church or temple
would instead be sought at a university, and instead of seeking comfort from a
priest, we would book an appointment with our physics professor.

Atheists argue that the world would be a much more peaceful
and civilised place without religion. Religion they say is the cause of most of
the conflicts which have plagued mankind down years.

They have a point. But the greatest war, with the greatest
atrocity ever committed in human history, happened only 70 years ago. It was started
by Adolph Hitler. He was an atheist.

I've never met a true atheist. I've met plenty who pretend
they are, but I know, deep down, that they exercise bravado. It's cool to be an
atheist because it implies a moral and intellectual superiority.

I understand that Dawkins is a scientist, and he cannot reconcile
his logic with the illogical.

What I don't understand is why he is so angry. Why is he so fundamental
in his beliefs?

Dawkins’ hero is Charles Darwin. Yet even he had the basic
humanity not to attack the beliefs of others. He struggled with his research
and beliefs for most of his life before he published them. He was torn because
his faith had been affected by the death of his daughter, and he was fearful of
upsetting his wife even more than offending the church. He was a gentleman.

It is this dignified gentle soul that Dawkins has hijacked
for his own ends. Yes Mr Dawkins, we are not stupid, we understand the theory
of evolution, know that life evolved over eons and it was the process of
natural selection and survival of the fittest which probably produced us today.
We are aware that there was a big bang which created the universe and the
Earth. But deep down, somehow the Goldilocks effect came into play. Not too
hot, not too cold – the porridge was just right with just the right distance
from the sun, and a moon just the right distance from the planet.

Oh yes. In the grand scheme of the universe this unique random series of events produced the blue planet and it's abundance of life. Indeed, it's
suggested that even asteroids hit it at the right time, bringing ice and
therefore water. Theories – all theories.

And then there is the widely accepted theory that a
meteorite hit the planet, causing mass extinction of the dinosaurs, thereby
allowing the mammals and hominids to inherit the Earth.

And yet, such is the intelligence of our eminent Professor Dawkins,
that he thinks that this was all sheer chance. That we are here by luck and
luck alone.

There's nothing wrong with that point of view. Many
scientists, physicists and astronomers believe it. But most don't try to
convert us to become atheists.

There is a place in this world for science and religion, but
given the choice, I'd rather live in a world of religious faith, than a world devoid of
it.

It's a human thing after all. It's what makes us who we are, for all our faults.

See also Bardiness "Why I don't believe in Atheists"

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September 22, 2012 - Posted by | Culture, Education, History, Religion, Science | , , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. As always first class and is often how I think not being an overly religious person. Yes it must be wonderful to know that there is somewhere for us in the hereafter.

    Like

    Comment by spookmoor | September 22, 2012 | Reply


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