Twelve quick criticisms for Dawkins Et Al
What is it you think is unfair about Dawkin’s and the New-Atheist attack on religion?
Well, for one thing…..I don’t believe in all religions…..I believe in one religion. Or even more specifically I believe in Jesus. I’ll take Jesus in any debate against anyone thank you very much. Plus Jesus is the
His approach at all religions is disingenuous for philosophical, logical, and scientific reasons.
1) I’m not a Catholic or a Muslim (and don’t buy into any ideology that would cause me to attach myself to their ideologies). This is the same for most of America. Abuses of the Catholic power and mismanagement are not God or Jesus–they are the opposite.
2) Much of the critique falls on isolated parts of church leadership or church institutions….not the core of believers.
3) Its a geneaological account of sorts of religion. All institutions had difficulty which such a critique (science, human rights, the US government, etc…). This doesn’t speak to my issues in my faith-based walk now. What happened 200 or 2000 years ago in the church doesn’t quite matter to my faith. We had slavery and still have racism in America….but understood in context….America is still on balance better than other alternatives.
4) I’m not responsible for those who have abused the name of Jesus–because I don’t behave like that. In fact, the words of Jesus provides accountable.
5) Detachment from the reality. I choose a spiritual home and identity for myself.
I don’t choose all religion. I choose one…..and often in a very nuanced way.
6) Over-generalization, Lack of representativeness, and Lack of precision is a logical fallacy. He’s cherry picking examples.
7) The above suggests his attempts aren’t grounded in an academic search for truth, but rather a Witchhunt. (the ethics of which is truly manipulative and dispicable)
8) He didn’t really look at the real history of philosophy & theology (as a true academic would). His was far more like a manipulate Michael Moore (or worse) than a factual and respected Ken Burns. Michael Moore is an entertainer….Ken Burns is a real educator. (I didn’t borrow this from the NYT review below, but he actually makes this point in passing).
9) Dawkins, et al fail to understand the ways that science and reason are faith based
10) Particularly when inference, intuition, subjectivity, and emotion are actually eliminated or put in a diminutive status……because you ultimately paralize human action.
11) Hate speech against religion, ill informed polemics and hit-pieces, and even eliminating religion doesn’t really do any good. It only stirs the pot and engenders hate. If Dawkins had said the same things gays, women, or racial minorities that he about Christians (this one did bad things….ergo the whole group is rotten there would be 100,000s of thousands complaining to his publisher….and distributors). Playing the guilt by association game is a low blow indeed–not to mention intellectually dishonest (hasty generalization and poisoning the well–mostly the later–not to mention all the hate and vitriol which was created).
12) Using shady either/or logic and science and religion….rather than fully understanding the ways in which one informs and supports the other. Using shady either/or logic with respect to faith and reason. Most Christians I know don’t subscribe to a Kierkeggardian conception of faith…..in an absolutist sense. Faith doesn’t mean blind faith. Its that simple. And Dawkins avoid dozens and dozens of legitimate scholars he could have engaged…..but cherry picked…..to make for a tabloid-esque controversial story rather than an incisive and philosophical analysis. There was nothing scientific about his approach.
Ultimately, I see zero justification for war or conflict in the person of Jesus. I only see justification for peace and conflict resolution.