Skip to comments.Christopher Hitchens: Godlessness Is Not Great — How Atheism Poisons Everything
Posted on 12/20/2011 9:15:48 AM PST by Paladins Prayer
In writing this piece, Im reminded of a little exchange between the late William F. Buckley and friend and fellow National Review writer Florence King. Buckley had just penned some less-than-flattering words about a recently deceased person of prominence whose name escapes me, and King chided him, saying something to the effect that he had broken ground in journalism: the attack-obit. Buckleys response was, Wait till you see the obituary I have planned for you!
And in writing this critical article about bon vivant Christopher Hitchens in the wake of his death this past Thursday, I expect some ridicule as well. Yet I dont think Hitchens would demand to be spared the acidic ink he used to eviscerate others or that he would have any credibility doing so. Remember that this was the man who, before the gentle Jerry Falwells body was even cold, said things such as If he [Falwell] had been given an enema, he could have been buried in a matchbox and I wish there was a Hell for Falwell.
For my part, I wouldnt wish eternal damnation on Hitchens; I truly hope he rests in peace. But I cant say the same for his legacy. And when I see the obligatory exaltation of his lifes work with secular icons, the deader they get, the better they were I think that legacy needs a little damnation.
(Excerpt) Read more at thenewamerican.com ...
So am I. What is the point of interacting on this thread given your statement? Other than the logic snark of course.
I came on this thread to have a couple exchanges with other atheists. A believer addressed me and I was polite enough to answer.
Only to a poorly taught logician or philosopher. A properly taught logician knows the limits of logic and what can and cannot be known using the tool.
Even a minimally taught logician knows that the statement: "All that can be known to be true or real can be proven using logic" is a false statement. Because it cannot be proven using logic.
No human being, yourself included, limits what they know or can know to what they know using logic alone. Only computers and droids could possibly do so, but not us lowly humans.
What I see and what I think are IT. You can tell me what you see and what you think but it won't matter to me.
This the statement of a pure subjectivist, relativist. There's no room here for objective truth, logical or otherwise. And, therefore, no common truth possible and therefore no basis for discussion on what is "true." It's not all that different from the position of those religionists which you denigrated earlier. :)
But I do sincerely appreciate your time in reply.
>> Those who describe themselves as atheists really do seem to believe that atheism grows out of ones own superior intellectuality.
More like brain rot.
Yeah, yeah, that’s the ticket. Take scriptures out of context and pretend that you are the one who understands all things and pass your own puny little judgements on whatever verses you have not taken any time to understand. I’m sure being that type of a critic will win you many points in your debate with God - not...
>> You can tell me what you see and what you think but it won’t matter to me.
Apparently it does.
Whatever context is “missing”, feel free to fill in.
Whatever you want to do to massage your ego, as you did with your other comments.
Or we're told (as I saw on one of the Discovery channels a few weeks ago) that if not mere chance, then the naturalistic origin of life can be explained by "mysterious chemical reactions". Funny though, that scientists don't have an explanation for these mysterious chemical reactions.
So we end up with one of two scientific theories; either the 'theory of chance' or the 'theory of we can't explain it'. I guess Mr. Hawking should have included these in his 'theory of everything'.
“Give one objective reason why “There is no god but Allah and Muhammad is his Messenger” is wrong.”
I’m glad you asked for an objective reason although you would like an independent moral principle as well. Since I’m not an intellectual (thank G-d) I can’t deliver on the latter.
But I do in fact have no other basis to rely upon other than objective reality. And that reality is fourteen centuries of Islamic conquest, slaughter, and oppression in the name of their god Allah. That reality is the Middle East in which even under centuries of Islamic rule there existed substantial Jewish and Christian minorities. Well, the Jews are long gone from anyplace in the ME except Israel, and the Christians are being burned out of their churches, their women raped, their property stolen, and their ancient communities in place long before the rise of Islam are being progressively exterminated. Those are the horrible facts in Egypt, in Iraq (our fault!) and in Pakistan. The vids are there, check them out.
It is the height of Muslim arrogance to demand acceptance of their claim that they worship the same Deity as worshipped by Jews and Christians. This is but another form of hijacking at which Muslim terrorists have proven extremely effective.
Bottom line, Islam kills in the name of Allah and his “messenger”. It kills and kills and kills. That’s objective reality, measured in millions of corpses.
BTW, do you believe in G-d? It matters not to me personally whether you do or not, but it might affect the logical quality of your response.
Logic has given me all the answers I require. Religion is for people with unanswered questions. I don’t have any.
I do get it. You believe what you believe, it’s the truth and that’s that.
Seriously, thanks for your replies.
I suspect that “A Perfect Lady’s” husband finds that his ball and chain is “always right” and that he specializes in saying “Yes, dear.”
What religion or denomination were u born to from your folks?
Atheists seem to spring from some groups more than others....
But be my guest....i support your lack of religion
But much like homosexuality I dont think it should hold the majority hostage
And likely neither do you...or u would not be here
My father as far as I know was a lifelong atheist (much more aggressively than I am BTW), my mom was brought up Church of England (a war bride) but drifted out of it in her teens.
Both of them are gone now for almost twenty years so I can't ask them about their parents.
And by the way, if orthodox Christianity is true, both of my loving parents are now in eternal torment, aren't they?
And likely neither do you...or u would not be here
I like the way Bill Buckley put it. "Can one be a conservative and not believe in God? Of course. Can one be a conservative and despise God and those who believe in him? Of course not."
I have no beef with any conservative Christian or Jew, and have no problem with religion having a place in the public square.
It's only when someone starts telling me that as a (polite and civil) atheist I can't be a conservative, or that my atheism is harmful to America, that I draw the line and fight back.
What a shame, then, that he created so many billions that he didn't want added to his kingdom. Do you think that they get a break from the eternal hellfire? Say an hour or so every ten thousand years??
I think it's a relatively short jump from the idea that "the universe is random" to "the universe is not random". Some of the evidence for the latter is interesting although I am not yet quite convinced.
However it is an enormous jump from "the universe is not random" to "the universe was created by a Being specifically for the sake of the inhabitants of one single planet, orbiting one single star, in one single galaxy. Furthermore, that Being craves the personal affection and worship of the inhabitants of that one planet."
I do not see any scientific evidence which would substantiate that second jump.
In other words, you’ve proven that morality ultimately derives from human reason, which may, and indeed must, reject “God Says So” claims if the content of the claim is illogical.
That's a rather dim hope. You might do better by presenting an argument with fewer holes than a colander.
Whatever - how exactly do you perceive me massaging my ego?
I’m not sure how I got pinged to the discussion between the two of you.
Don’t see how anyone can make this statement without a smirk...
‘a relatively short jump from the idea that “the universe is random” to “the universe is not random”.’ Please elaborate.
Re: “created by a Being specifically for the sake of the inhabitants of one single planet, orbiting one single star, in one single galaxy.”
There is much scientific evidence supporting the Earth being the ‘center of it all’ Not arguing for geocentrism unless one counts the universe too.
Consider a National Geographic presentation for a 3D computer mock-up that shows the Earth in a very much central position of the all that we can see.
Or another recent DVD, “The Privileged Planet” by Illustra Media where they exclaim near the end how we appear to be uniquely positioned in the Universe to observe the entire visible spectrum.
Or how about the book “Just 6 Numbers”? It details how altering any 1 of these cosmological constants would not allow for life at all.
If you’re OK with all these being mere coincidences, then fine, but from my perspective I continue to find an overwhelming amount of evidence [see my links] in support of a relatively young Earth and Universe and the unique claims made by God in the Holy Bible.
Do you think, were it not for fear of eternal damnation, you would be a homosexual murderer?
Apparently James C. Bennett was trying to bring you into our discussion. He did this on another response to [which I did not notice at first] and I’d guess only Mr. Bennett knows why he does what he does...
I see no reason whatsoever for a creator not to have created millions of intelligences throughout the trillions of worlds that the universe contains.
Sorry, you don’t get to argue modern physics and declare young-earthism, any more than you get to argue modern medicine and declare that disease can be cured by bloodletting.
Maybe you’ve not heard this fairly recent perspective on Einstein’s relativity and the big bang theory?
from wikipedia re: Russell Humphrey...
“Humphreys’ book, Starlight and Time, presents an alternative cosmological model to the currently accepted Big bang theory, that attempts to solve the Distant Starlight Problem.
Its thesis is that the Earth is about six thousand years old, and the outer edge of an expanding and rotating 3-dimensional universe is billions of years old (when measured from earth).
It proposes using the principles of relativity to postulate that time ticked at different rates during the universe’s origin.
In other words, according to his theory, clocks on earth registered the six days of creation while those at the edge of the universe counted the approximately 15 billion years needed for light from the most distant galaxies to reach earth. The model places the Milky Way galaxy relatively near the center of the cosmos.”
Now if you assign 7-8 billion years for the 1st creation day and add half again for each subsequent day, the result is 13.75 - 15.75 billion years of apparent age for 6 days of creation w/ 24 literal hours transpired each day.
Some folks are just too close-minded to be considered scientific these days.
They are like the global warming alarmists who tell us the science is settled, end of discussion...
Oh I am certainly willing to consider the evidence.
The evidence is that the gravity between the Sun and the Earth is both necessary and sufficient to explain the orbital acceleration of the Earth around the Sun - while there is no known force that could move the Sun around the Earth while leaving the Earth motionless.
Besides you have already stated that your criteria is what you believe the Bible says - not where the evidence will lead you - so much for your scientific outlook - it is pure apologetics.
Kindly go back and read post 71 of this thread.
You say you don’t but then you do.
If you don’t then just say “I agree that gravity moves the Earth around the Sun”.
I will not hold my breath.
You can't be serious. Atheist systems destroyed tens of millions of people in the last century. To say that individual liberty does not survive in atheist systems is a truth known to any serious student of history.
In other words, at bottom, atheism has no defense of Life and Liberty.
RE: the jihadi who says his "god" tells him to destroy infidels what kind of God promotes this kind of irrational hatred? What kind of God promotes such incredible dysfunction in the relations between the sexes that is universal in the Islamic world?
In this case, Burkean Buckleyite, you may be correct that "God is used to justify making up your own rules." But we cease to be speaking of God and authentic religion at that point. We then are speaking only of disordered and disorderly men....
I’ll not be your puppet. Your tripe is often some misrepresentation of any/all for whom you disagree...
I know it is embarrassing to be called out on this - but why try to deny what you believe?
Do you find “God's Holy Word”, as you see it, an embarrassment?
Liberty has thrived best in those cultures which have both (1) a grounding in the Judeo-Christian ethic and (2) a healthy leavening of Enlightenment thinking.
Liberty has existed for a short while in other cultures (for example modern Japan) but the track record is not long enough to determine if it will stick.
I do believe that the founders of the United States considered themselves Christians. But they were Christians heavily influenced by the Enlightenment and I'm not sure that they would recognize contemporary American fundamentalism as quite the same "Christianity" as theirs.
The doctrine that an old universe is heretical and anti-Christian has probably driven hundreds of thousands (if not more) away from Christianity.
It certainly has had a role in my case for one.
The Bible reveals to the reader taht God’s heart is moved by demonstrations of faith (”...for without faith it is impossible to please God”). Prayer is a demonstration of faith. God’s heart can be moved by such demonstrations to intercede in the affairs of men and women.
Of course these things are baffling to those whose intellect prevents them from seeing beyond their own understanding and into “the deep things of God.”
“An omniscient god has no need for prayers.
Such a god would have known what you yearned for, before you prayed.”
Christian prayer isn’t because God needs it in order to function. It is for the believer that his faith might increase.
He sounds suspiciously human.
Yes, the notion that the Earth is young is contradicted by so many independent data points that anyone claiming the Earth is young may as well go around claiming that the Sun goes around the Earth!
Oh! Wait a minute......
As I say to my Christian friends, “You disbelieve in hundreds of gods. I just disbelieve in one more than you do. We are closer than you think....”
I don't know of any evidence for a naturalistic non-random universe since, according to science, all the laws of physics and constants were established merely by chance, within just a few seconds after the theorized 'Big Bang'.
I sent you the following private email and it aptly illustrates how you often distort what other FReepers say:
“I merely quote and point to the work of other scientists
esp. that which aligns with Gods Holy Word.
FR is a discussion forum - no science is completed here.
Also when do you ever provide any fresh scientific outlooks?”
Case in point how does one honestly ask:
“Do you find God’s Holy Word, as you see it, an embarrassment?”
Esp. in light of all my other remarks as well as my homepage. At least I have the guts to indicate some of my background relevant to the discussions herein.
Sir, you are the embarrassment with your constant drivel, distortions, and disparagement of FReepers you disagree with rather than anything approaching true honest heart-felt debate.
“What a shame, then, that he created so many billions that he didn’t want added to his kingdom. Do you think that they get a break from the eternal hellfire? Say an hour or so every ten thousand years??”
People choose hell. You and the others who are satisfied with your own finite thinking and have concluded there is no God are determining your own eternally reality right now, and are quite happy about it. God, on the other hand is not and, so, moves the hearts of men and women already transformed by the message of the cross (”foolishness to them who are perishing, but to us who are being saved, it is the power of God...”) to share the Gospel message (which He knows many will reject). God’s Son came to die for sinners, those who, by virtue of their human sin-nature, are already living outside of God’s will (and, as Christ said, “condemned already.”) God desires that none should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
As to the second part, the only sin for which people are cast into hell is the sin of unbelief. These folks will receive not a second of relief from their eternal torment. Such a severe punishment is meted out to underscore the severity of the offense—something that those stuck in their own thinking fail to grasp.
“There is a way that seems right to a man, the end thereof is the way of death.” — Choose life!
Or is it that we are “suspiciously” made in His image?
Krosan - are you serious in lumping Jesus in with these others as a mythical figure?
Try reading: ‘More than a Carpenter” by Josh McDowell.
Jealous, moody, dictatorial, and mercurial?
How do you explain the discrepancy between your pretense that you are not a Geocentrist or not defending Geocentrism and that I am somehow misrepresenting your position when I refer to you as a Geocentrist - when you make the claim that such is “God's Holy Word”?
The only thing I can think of is that you are embarrassed to admit it so you prevaricate.
No problems, I would be embarrassed as well if I believed in something so ludicrous!