Skip to comments.Going All the Way - An atheist "converts" to intelligent design. Why so timid, Mr. Flew?
Posted on 12/24/2004 5:51:26 AM PST by StoneGiant
Going All the Way
An atheist "converts" to intelligent design. Why so timid, Mr. Flew?
BY ANDREW KLAVAN
Friday, December 24, 2004 12:01 a.m.
Antony Flew and I found God this year. We had different reactions to the discovery.
Mr. Flew, an 81-year-old professor of philosophy in Britain, had been a leading champion of atheism for the past half-century. He has now hesitantly accepted a version of what's called the argument from design. He says the "unbelievable complexity of the arrangements which are needed to produce life" shows that "intelligence must have been involved."
But in a panel discussion taped in May, Prof. Flew cautioned, "I'm thinking of a God very different from the God of the Christian and far and away from the God of Islam, because both are depicted as omnipotent Oriental despots--cosmic Saddam Husseins." What's more, on the secularist Web site www.infidels.org, writer Richard Carrier says he has contacted Prof. Flew and reassures his fellow atheists that the professor is proposing only a "tentative, mechanistic Deism" and continues to deny the possibility of an afterlife.
So that's how Prof. Flew responded to his encounter with the Divinity. Me, I got baptized.
(Excerpt) Read more at opinionjournal.com ...
Flew is an 81 year old atheist who suddenly gets religion, and nobody thinks it has something to do with getting closer to the grave?
I suspect it's a stronger version of the type of religion discovered in foxholes during the heat of battle.
Your point is well taken.
It leads me to consider whether or not our modern / "hurry-hurry" society that fails to take time for contemplation and the peace of just listening to the crickets as dusk falls, or too busy to spend time with the kids at something other than a soccer tournament is just too tied up with the "here-and-now" to understand and appreciate the impermanence of life.
Perhaps it's only as people understand that Death is a real and perhaps near-term event do they understand and appreciate the grander scheme of things... and that our only hope is one related to a God who cares for us?
If Flew's newfound belief in God is rooted in being old and nearing death, then it would follow that Flew's atheism was rooted in the fact that he was young and unmindful of death.
The young always think they are immortal, and death (if they think of it at all) is far far away. Attitudes tend to change with age and the reality of one's mortality.
Flew gives no rational reasoning for his "conversion", no research papers, no book. He basically says, "I changed my mind", and that kind of statement can only lead to a suspicion that Flew knows he is soon to meet his maker.
"He has now hesitantly accepted a version of what's called the argument from design."
What is a design without a designer. In today's secular and often uneducated world many are focused on everything that satisfies one's self. Atheism is simply a person declaring themself THE authority over circumstance and morals. There is no "argument from design". Why because we have the "evidence of design". The proof that evolution is not scientific is proven in the study of physics, chemistry and mathematics. A designer overcame natural laws. I hope this man sees the light. I was an atheist. When I was in college a question came to me. Can evolution be proven via chemistry and physics? After four years of searching the answer was "No".
Flew is being true to the tradition his education gave him. That tradition or branch of learning isn't enough to convey the whole of human experience, but it's hard to look at things with a different set of eyes after 80 years.
Cramming for his finals, perhaps?
Don't believe so in this case. Flew's "God" doesn't intervene personally and there's no heaven, hell, afterlife, etc.