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Subject: Re: Not a fundamentalist ( 9 of 63 )
Posted by thom stuart

your life has taught you that there is a god?

a teacher can teach you that two plus three equals five. being in a car accident can teach you that careless driving has dire consequences. looking at the fossil record, thinking hard about simplicity and complexity, and reading good authors like dawkins can teach you that evolution is an overwhelmingly probable reality.

but reading an inconsistent, chinese-whispered, two-thousand-year-old book, and listening to the advice and counsel of others who have formed their opinions by reading it, isn't going to teach you anything outside of the realm of self-reinforcing delusionary dogma.

you don't have to be stupid to believe in a god; you just have to be impressionable. you just have to be out of other ideas. the fact that the "well-educated" are indirectly less likely to be so, and more likely to be aware of empirical method and intelligent observation, is the reason for mr adams' entirely correct remarks - and not, as you'd like to think, some kind of inner malicious motive for criminal offence against the religious.

life cannot possibly teach you that there is a god unless your experiences have been wild enough, your knowledge narrow enough and your nature apathetic enough to drive you into subscribing to a quick, easy answer to all of the questions you can't or won't think about.

where did the universe come from? god. what's the purpose of life? god. how can i solve my problems? god.

why do things go wrong in my life? god's testing me. why do things go right in my life? god's rewarding me. why am i here, today, on this marvellous, wonderful planet? god loves me.

that doesn't sound educated to me. it sounds lazy and convenient and self-deluding.

so yes, maybe you were offended. maybe i would have been offended too if i were in your position. but if you're going to sacrifice your intellectual potential and your amazing, ostensibly god-given ability to examine the world and be creative and genuine and independent with your ideas about it, then you need to accept the consequences. you need to accept that someone, somewhere, is going to think you're stark raving bonkers.

you have every right to believe whatever you want, and every right to be offended at people who contradict that. but, please, some of us are actually making an effort to come up with some real answers, some real explanations, some real beauty to underlie the beauty. don't spoil it with the hand-waving and the blindfolds. we have better things to think about.

the last word goes to the man himself, from that very interview:

God used to be the best explanation wed got, and weve now got vastly better ones. God is no longer an explanation of anything, but has instead become something that would itself need an insurmountable amount of explaining.

i am glad you enjoy the books, though!
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