“But we’re all about the science…really…”

The crew at Uncommon Descent aren’t just excited about the soon to be released pro-ID film Expelled, they’ve also got a book by David Berlinski to look forward to:

How could one not adore a guy who is a mathematician, no advocate of any religion, a Darwin skeptic, and phenomenally eloquent in both English and French, with a great penchant for ironic humor? His latest opus is The Devil’s Delusion: Atheism and Its Scientific Pretensions, due out in April.

For a movement which is “purely scientific” they seem to spend a lot of time whining about atheists.

The Amazon book description begins thusly:

Militant atheism is on the rise. Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Daniel Dennett, and Christopher Hitchens have dominated bestseller lists with books denigrating religious belief as dangerous foolishness. And these authors are merely the leading edge of a far larger movement–one that now includes much of the scientific community.

Who wrote this?  It reads like the opening of any Bill Muehlenberg article.  What these people would have is for atheists to quietly state their views and then fade into the background and leave it at that.  If, however, you state your views about religion and proceed to disseminate them further by publishing books, participating in debates doing public speaking and so on, suddenly you’re a militant atheist (insert scary ghost noise here).

A secular Jew, Berlinski nonetheless delivers a biting defense of religious thought. An acclaimed author who has spent his career writing about mathematics and the sciences, he turns the scientific community’s cherished skepticism back on itself, daring to ask and answer some rather embarrassing questions:

Has anyone provided a proof of God’s inexistence?
Not even close.

Given that it’s not up to atheists to prove the inexistence of deities,  I don’t see the problem.  Theists shouldn’t take comfort in the fact that we can’t prove that their god doesn’t exist.

Has quantum cosmology explained the emergence of the universe or why it is here?
Not even close.

And?  A gap in human knowledge does not an argument make.  We can only assume that Berlinski is suggesting that since we haven’t explained cosmological origins we should seriously entertain supernatural causation, or that it is on an equal footing with natural explanations, but that’s not how science works.

Have the sciences explained why our universe seems to be fine-tuned to allow for the existence of life?
Not even close.

Life tunes itself to the universe, not the other way around.  If the universe is so great for life why is there so little of it?  As a matter of fact, the vast majority of the universe is exceedingly hostile to life.

Are physicists and biologists willing to believe in anything so long as it is not religious thought?
Close enough.

It depends on what is meant by “religious thought”.  It looks like Berlinski’s complaining about the tendency of scientists to work strictly within a framework of methodological naturalism.  But again, that’s how science works.  We don’t allow supernatural explanations within science for a good reason.

Has rationalism in moral thought provided us with an understanding of what is good, what is right, and what is moral?
Not close enough.

Has religion?

Has secularism in the terrible twentieth century been a force for good?
Not even close to being close.

When people can’t distinguish between the separation of church and state and totalitarianism, it’s a serious intellectual failing.  Religious apologists have been flogging this dead horse for decades, and it looks like it will forever remain a central debating tool.  Does Berlinksi seriously see any similarities in the thinking of Dawkins/Hitchens/Dennett/Harris and Joseph Stalin?  Such accusations aren’t worthy of a response.

Is there a narrow and oppressive orthodoxy of thought and opinion within the sciences?
Close enough.

No doubt this “narrow and oppressive orthodoxy” is the strict adherence to methodological naturalism mentioned earlier.  How many times must these people be told?  The supernatural doesn’t fall within the purview of science.  When you start to invoke magic to explain the natural world you’re no longer doing science.  It’s like a soccer player complaining about a referee who won’t let him pick the ball up with his hands.

Does anything in the sciences or in their philosophy justify the claim that religious belief is irrational?
Not even ballpark.

Surely a point of contention.  I’ll be interested to see the case made in support of this assertion.

Is scientific atheism a frivolous exercise in intellectual contempt?
Dead on.

‘Scientific atheism’?  How does this differ from your average run-of-the-mill atheism?

Berlinski does not dismiss the achievements of western science. The great physical theories, he observes, are among the treasures of the human race. But they do nothing to answer the questions that religion asks, and they fail to offer a coherent description of the cosmos or the methods by which it might be investigated.

What are these questions that are only asked by religion?  Are they meaningful questions?  As Dawkins has pointed out:

Perhaps there are some genuinely profound and meaningful questions that are forever beyond the reach of science. … But if science cannot answer some ultimate questions, what makes anybody think that religion can? … I have yet to see any good reason to suppose that theology (as opposed to biblical history, literature, etc.) is a subject at all.

[N]ot every English sentence beginning with the word “why” is a legitimate question. Why are unicorns hollow? Some questions simply do not deserve an answer. What is the colour of abstraction? What is the smell of hope? The fact that a question can be phrased in a grammatically correct English sentence doesn’t make it meaningful, or entitle it to our serious attention.

Obviously it’s hard to give a proper appraisal of this book given that it hasn’t been released yet, but if the blurb is anything to go by I don’t think GilDodgen and the rest of the gang at Uncommon Descent should be getting to excited about it.

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~ by Sammy Jankis on February 24, 2008.

14 Responses to ““But we’re all about the science…really…””

  1. Given that it’s not up to atheists to prove the inexistence of deities, I don’t see the problem.

    It’s not just atheists that don’t have to prove the inexistence of deities, nobody has to (e.g. Hindu’s don’t have to disprove the Christian God).

    The phrase “he turns the scientific community’s cherished skepticism back on itself…” really means “he shifts the burden of proof”, which is a logical fallacy, not an act of scientific skepticism. Theists posit their respective God theories, and it falls upon the proponents of those theories to provide proofs (and garbage ontological arguments don’t count).

    Has rationalism in moral thought provided us with an understanding of what is good, what is right, and what is moral?

    Consequentialism over religious absolutism any day. There’s a reason why the Pope (and Pell) runs a false dichotomy line about relativism vs absolutism. There’s a reason why some theists claim a trifurcation between relativism, absolutism and egoism.

    It’s because if they acknowledge the existence of consequentialism (given its sizable body of intellectual work, only an intellectual incompetent or a liar could deny its existence), they open up comparisons between their own ethical systems and a serious contender that doesn’t falter at the same old moral dilemmas. They also open themselves up to observations that many, if not most theists, already use a common sense consequentialism in their everday lives and it’s only those in theism that don’t do this that become the Torquemadas and so forth.

    Rationalism (specifically consequentialism) in moral thought has utterly defeated uniquely religious thought (some religious perspectives use consequentialism).

    From the blurb, it looks like Berlinski’s work is thoughtless, ignorant rubbish.

  2. It’s not just atheists that don’t have to prove the inexistence of deities, nobody has to (e.g. Hindu’s don’t have to disprove the Christian God).

    Precisely, yet it never ceases to amaze me how some theists will ask “Well have you disproven the existence of God?” and sit back with a smug look thinking they’ve got you cornered.

  3. I think you actually make Berlinski’s point. While you correctly point out that science is concerned with the provable you concede – as you must – that science has not proved everything. Indeed, because of that, we don’t even know how much that is certainly physical is left to prove or discover.

    Your assumption that it will is not valid as proof. For that is a belief; actually psychic forecasting!

    As for calling on the over-emotional Dawkins for support – be careful who’s star you hitch your wagon to.

    His problem, your problem, atheists’ problem is that such approaches are turning science from a valid and logical study into a belief system. Pretending that other belief systems are already disproven is disingenuous.

    You can’t prove God, you can’t disprove God; of course not. If God exists it is beyond the scientific plane; at least beyond our current understanding of it. Probably it can never be scientifically resolved.

    Live with it.

  4. While you correctly point out that science is concerned with the provable you concede – as you must – that science has not proved everything. Indeed, because of that, we don’t even know how much that is certainly physical is left to prove or discover.

    Your assumption that it will is not valid as proof.

    I haven’t suggested that science will explain everything. I do believe, however, that the best approach to answering unsolved questions about the nature of the universe is through science. The problem is that Berlinski appears to be implying that ‘atheistic scientists’ are claiming that science has explained, or will explain, all the difficult questions (like all the fine details concerning the origin of the universe for example), making them out to be arrogant.

    As for calling on the over-emotional Dawkins for support – be careful who’s star you hitch your wagon to.

    His problem, your problem, atheists’ problem is that such approaches are turning science from a valid and logical study into a belief system.

    What Dawkins is proposing is that if there are unanswered questions which may never be explained by science there is no good reason to think that religion can. Science is not, and cannot be, a ‘belief system’. It is a method. It is no more a belief system than philosophy or medicine.

    You can’t prove God, you can’t disprove God; of course not. If God exists it is beyond the scientific plane; at least beyond our current understanding of it. Probably it can never be scientifically resolved.

    Live with it.

    Have I argued that the god question can be scientifically resolved?

  5. SJ said: Have I argued that the god question can be scientifically resolved?

    JH writes: The way you argue against Berlinski suggests that view. I am glad to learn that I misunderstood.

    SJ: writes: What Dawkins is proposing is that if there are unanswered questions which may never be explained by science there is no good reason to think that religion can. Science is not, and cannot be, a ‘belief system’. It is a method. It is no more a belief system than philosophy or medicine.

    JH writes: This is the old game of switching terms and hoping no one notices. Explaining and proving are different things. Dawkins dodges; read him carefully. I did not say science IS a belief system either. In attacking religions and God its scientists are creating the same thing, pretending spurious authority by the vestments of their calling ;-).

    And that is the other main term game; pretending ‘God’ and ‘religion’ are interchangeable terms. First those who argue for or against God fail to offer a definition – the first need of a proof! Second they also fail to offer a definition of religion. Though some do say things like ‘the God of Christianity’. But which version of Christianity? What aspects of that multi-faceted religion?

    Now I do not pretend there are useful answers to any of this. And that for the very good reason that there is little meeting point between science and faith. Though there can be and should be meeting points between people of both groups.

    Dawkins plays god to my mind in pretending to know or understand issues which science may be unable to explain. If science cannot explain something it has nothing to say on the subject. Any view in that circumstance cannot be scientific, but only personal and probably emotional.

    SJ said: I do believe, however, that the best approach to answering unsolved questions about the nature of the universe is through science. The problem is that Berlinski appears to be implying that ‘atheistic scientists’ are claiming that science has explained, or will explain, all the difficult questions (like all the fine details concerning the origin of the universe for example), making them out to be arrogant.

    JH writes: But this is indeed the point in dealing with Dawkins and the other three, including my namesake, Sam Harris. ‘The God Delusion’ is as arrogant as one can get. Like the old Yorkshire saying: ‘They’re all a bit mad except thee and me – and I’m a bit concerned about thee’.

    Dawkins is further on record [a UK magazine article some years back] as having FAITH that the theory of evolution will be proved. Science takes us on exciting journies into understanding our physical world. I do wish scientists would get on with that and stop revealing poor logic in their excursions into the paranormal and faith.

  6. The way you argue against Berlinski suggests that view.

    Specifically which part? There is no point that I’ve seen that states what you attributed to Sammy and indeed only statements that contradict it.

    This is the old game of switching terms and hoping no one notices.

    Show where proof and explanation have been swapped.

    First those who argue for or against God fail to offer a definition – the first need of a proof!

    The definition of God in The God Delusion is pretty discrete, as is Dawkins’ definition of religion. He detailed the former in differentiating it from the “Einsteinian God” and the latter from “Einsteinian Religion”. “God” in the God Delusion is also further refined by the exclusion of terms such as “an intelligence” and so on.

    But which version of Christianity? What aspects of that multi-faceted religion?

    The supernatural ones. This criticism of yours is like a criticism of Dawkins’ treatment of the ontological argument that I read in the NYT. All versions have the same underlying flaw which Dawkins detailed, yet he was called out for not specifically rebutting each one individually.

    Dawkins plays god to my mind in pretending to know or understand issues which science may be unable to explain.

    Perhaps you could distinguish this from a personal and emotional remark by giving us an example of knowledge he claims that science doesn’t share, that otherwise he shouldn’t. Why shouldn’t he be able to understand say either ethics or aesthetics? Or, where does he claim scientific knowledge of something science doesn’t know?

    But this is indeed the point in dealing with Dawkins and the other three…

    Having read and understood The God Delusion I’ve seen no part of it that claims that science will necessarily answer any of these mysteries of the Universe. Quite the contrary. The limitations of scientific knowledge are covered when he addresses religion assuming proof by fiat in the face of mystery.

    I’m curious JH, have you actually read The God Delusion or just skimmed through and parroted some of the cannards about it? The way you only just previously skimmed through Sammy’s post and attributed the same straw man to him?

    Did you not read the part that said “Perhaps there are some genuinely profound and meaningful questions that are forever beyond the reach of science”? That which you attribute to Dawkins is expressly contradicted by him (and not in just that quote either).

    ‘The God Delusion’ is as arrogant as one can get.

    Arrogance maybe, but that doesn’t make it wrong. How would you characterise proof by fiat while you are at it? For that matter, how would you characterise theists telling atheists what atheists think? Let’s have an even standard!

    Dawkins is further on record [a UK magazine article some years back] as having FAITH that the theory of evolution will be proved.

    Given your mis-attributions thus far, I think it reasonable to ask for a direct reference and faithful quote.

    I do wish scientists would get on with that and stop revealing poor logic in their excursions into the paranormal and faith.

    An odd way to conclude. There’s a generally good rule to debate that goes that you don’t introduce anything new in the conclusion. It stops you from making unsubstantiated remarks in addition to facilitating communication of your point.

    It’s sad that you’ve avoided this rule. Indeed, if Dawkins had so obviously revealed such poor logic, it shouldn’t have been hard for you to actually point some of this logic out to us, rather than just asserting it in conclusion!

    My advice to you Joseph; when approaching atheists (and scientists for that matter) in discussion about the views they express, address the views they express and for crying out loud, don’t prattle on with clearly fabricated caricatures. It may not have occurred to you, but atheists may just be a tad more familiar with what they think, than what theists are.

    If you really think that there should be “meeting points between people of both groups” do you really think putting words in people’s mouths is going to help?

  7. Hi Bruce.

    Sammy wrote this:
    Who wrote this? It reads like the opening of any Bill Muehlenberg article. What these people would have is for atheists to quietly state their views and then fade into the background and leave it at that. If, however, you state your views about religion and proceed to disseminate them further by publishing books, participating in debates doing public speaking and so on, suddenly you’re a militant atheist (insert scary ghost noise here).
    And this:
    Given that it’s not up to atheists to prove the inexistence of deities, I don’t see the problem. Theists shouldn’t take comfort in the fact that we can’t prove that their god doesn’t exist.

    JH: Perhaps that is not against Berlinski? It seems so to me. And what precisely is Dawkins doing over the past 20 years or so but trying to prove ‘the inexistence of deities’? His home is in the same land as mine and his university 40 miles up the road. If you think he makes good logical sense in this are see his UK tv progammes. Read his debate in Time with Collins in – I think – October 2006.

    JH: Oh! And he excludes ‘an intelligence’ does he? What does he think ‘God’ as understood by the major religions is then? I too, and you, could prove anything if our definitions presuppose the conclusion. Isn’t there a fallacy about this [he asks innocently ;-)]

    JH: You see Bruce, if you are trying to deny something believed by others you have to address the actual belief, not a cod Aunt Sally [straw man]. Serious academics and religious philosophers struggle with the problem of trying to describe God. But, Hey!, Dawkins has saved them all the trouble. You can go home and relax chaps.

    JH: By the way Einstein was hot stuff at relativity, but nowhere in religious philosophy! Unless you know better?

    Bruce said: Did you not read the part that said “Perhaps there are some genuinely profound and meaningful questions that are forever beyond the reach of science”? That which you attribute to Dawkins is expressly contradicted by him (and not in just that quote either).

    JH: Ah yes so he did; he said ***’perhaps’*** – that’s right ***’perhaps’***. In the subtleties of Brit [specially English] acadaemia that translats as ‘No marks if you really believe it!’

    Bruce wrote: It’s sad that you’ve avoided this rule. Indeed, if Dawkins had so obviously revealed such poor logic, it shouldn’t have been hard for you to actually point some of this logic out to us, rather than just asserting it in conclusion!

    My advice to you Joseph; when approaching atheists (and scientists for that matter) in discussion about the views they express, address the views they express and for crying out loud, don’t prattle on with clearly fabricated caricatures. It may not have occurred to you,

    JH: ROTFLMAO All I can point out to you is that atheists as a group simply say: ‘no god’. Individually they may support different concepts such as Humanism. But there is no ‘atheist thinking’ that it is possible to grasp and I was protesting the use of the term as though any single atheist can represent all.

    JH: I suppose logic is as logic does.

  8. Sorry for the delayed reply Joseph. Have been busy…

    And what precisely is Dawkins doing over the past 20 years or so but trying to prove ‘the inexistence of deities’?

    He’s spent most of his time writing about evolution and demonstrating how flawed the argument from design is. He’s also criticised religious belief, proposing that there are no good reasons to believe in supernatural deities. He hasn’t been trying to ‘prove the inexistence of deities’ because, as Dawkins’ concedes, it’s not possible to do so, and the burden of proof does not lie with the unbeliever.

    If you think he makes good logical sense in this are see his UK tv progammes. Read his debate in Time with Collins in – I think – October 2006.

    Instead of saying ‘go read this’ or ‘go watch that’ maybe you could provide some specific examples of what you consider to be illogical.

    Ah yes so he did; he said ***’perhaps’*** – that’s right ***’perhaps’***. In the subtleties of Brit [specially English] acadaemia that translats as ‘No marks if you really believe it!’

    Try addressing Dawkins’ main point – that it is unreasonable to assume that questions unanswered by science are (by default) best answered by religion.

  9. 😉 OK Sammy, you’re allowed time off.

    Sammy, Ive been watching Dawkins pretend to scientific demonstrations of the falsity of the paranormal and the non-existence of God since a series he did here some 20 or more years ago.

    He travelled all over the world, selecting the most odd practices of different groups and sects under the Christian umbrella. Each time he turns to camera and, to paraphrase, says see, this is nonsense, this means Christianity is nonsense, this means there is no God.

    The first and most glaring fault in this is that almost all the practices he chose were not Christian at all, but regional practices which were ‘absorbed’ into the local variation of the religion.

    Secondly his message that Christianity was either alone in representing God, or was identical to all other representations of God was a failure of analysis. Thirdly his melding of the definitions of religions and God was an unforgiveable fallacy for a professor of science.

    He is entitled to any opinion he likes, as are you. But when someone parades his scientific credentials one assumes there are scientific methods on offer. Especially the use of scientific methodology and logic.

    Now I offered a concrete example of his method of dodging when cornered, and guided Bruce to Time magazine. I also pointed out that in The God Delusion it was nonsensical to exclude ‘an intelligence’ when defining ‘God’. Please note that that exclusion was probably because of the way Collins cornered him in Time.

    If Dawkins’s main point is as you say there are ways of saying it clearly. But it is mere opinion even so. It is also the kind of statement that itself is a set of negatives. Scientific logic is not as happy as mathematics with negatives!

    Come briefly to the question which Dawkins and others are positing. Should we question religion, spiritual philosophy, theism and so on? Too right we should Are religionists confident in their beliefs in God, their religions and philosophies? Certainly not the intelligent ones. Do they question and doubt? Of course.

    But the reason scientists and atheists [as a considerable generalisation] choke on the questions of God, religion and the paranormal is that they want to approach them with materialist logic.

    Logic is part of science and the sciences. Science and the sciences are about material things and require verifiable proofs. It is a whole different world. In a sense almost universes in different continuums [different continua if grammar is your thing ;-)].

    One can reason about the subjects, of course, and doubt and reject them without the sky falling. But it is significant that adherence to the concepts of God and religion and the paranormal continues even among scientists.

    One other point which perhaps rounds my comments. While science has made great strides in explaining our world and in extending our understandings of physical life it is not infallible, nor incapable of heading off on a wrong tack. And through its facility to refine its investigative abilities it can produce quite major refinements to any previously settled matter.

    Its discoveries are also liable to be misinterpreted and misused – something that happened with eugenics.

    Yet Dawkins argues from overweening self-confidence in the accuracy and completeness of science (and his complete knowledge of it) – something which cannot be certain!

    I am not here concerned to argue an opposing case. God, if he exists, can take care of himself, religion is not going to disappear anytime soon and there is enough anecdotal support for the paranormal to make it an interesting area for good investigation.

    And I also think you have altered the basis of the discussion by turning to that summary of negatives ;-). Nonetheless, in my opinion, whichever way you cut it Dawkins fails to offer good logic in his rantings on God and religion.

  10. He travelled all over the world, selecting the most odd practices of different groups and sects under the Christian umbrella. Each time he turns to camera and, to paraphrase, says see, this is nonsense, this means Christianity is nonsense, this means there is no God.

    Why does it mean that?

    The first and most glaring fault in this is that almost all the practices he chose were not Christian at all, but regional practices which were ‘absorbed’ into the local variation of the religion.

    Can you cite some examples, please. (I’m detecting a whiff of No True Christian(TM) Scotsman here.)

    Secondly his message that Christianity was either alone in representing God, or was identical to all other representations of God was a failure of analysis.

    As far as I’m aware (having read TGD and other work by Dawkins on this topic), the “god” theory that Dawkins is attacking is the one where a deity is posited as the creator of the universe. The claim that the universe is the product of an intelligent creator is a scientific claim (because it asserts that it is a property of this universe that it is the product of an intelligent designer/creator; ergo, Dawkins is not being unscientific in subjecting this claim to critique. And where certain theories of god make more specific assertions, such that this universe was created by a deity/intelligence six to ten thousand years ago, and that “God” is defined such that he/she created the universe six to ten thousand years ago, surely Dawkins and others are on firmer ground in opining that that God does not exist. Obviously many Christians and other theists don’t subscribe to that theory of god, but if it is a property of the god they worship that he or she at some indefinite point in time created the universe, then they are still making a claim about the universe (i.e. that it is a created universe) that is subject to scientific critique.

    Now I offered a concrete example of his method of dodging when cornered, and guided Bruce to Time magazine. I also pointed out that in The God Delusion it was nonsensical to exclude ‘an intelligence’ when defining ‘God’.

    You haven’t been more specific about this than a simple instruction for us to go and look at a Time article, but doesn’t Dawkins address this when he argues that the problem with invoking an “intelligence” as an explanation for the natural universe, Collins, et. al. are simply positing something that itself requires explanation, and therefore haven’t really explained anything at all?

    But the reason scientists and atheists [as a considerable generalisation] choke on the questions of God, religion and the paranormal is that they want to approach them with materialist logic.

    Where religious claims, theories about god and claims about the paranormal involve making claims about the material universe, then it is entirely justifiable (whether one is a theist or an atheist) to subject such claims to “materialist” (read: methodologically naturalist) critique. A claim about the universe is not immune to such criticism simply because it is advanced from a religious quarter. Do you want me to accept your claim that there are fairies at the bottom of the garden? Then show me the evidence.

    While science has made great strides in explaining our world and in extending our understandings of physical life it is not infallible, nor incapable of heading off on a wrong tack. And through its facility to refine its investigative abilities it can produce quite major refinements to any previously settled matter

    Agreed.

    Its discoveries are also liable to be misinterpreted and misused – something that happened with eugenics.

    Agreed.

    Yet Dawkins argues from overweening self-confidence in the accuracy and completeness of science (and his complete knowledge of it) – something which cannot be certain!

    What evidence (i.e. direct quotes from Dawkins himself, as opposed to your personal interpretations of what Dawkins has said) is there that Dawkins either possesses complete knowledge of science, or has claimed possession of complete knowledge of science?

    religion is not going to disappear anytime soon

    Neither is atheism. Neither is skepticism.

    and there is enough anecdotal support for the paranormal to make it an interesting area for good investigation.

    Investigation? Using what methods? Scientific methods? Wouldn’t that involve the use of teh evil materialist logic?

  11. …are simply positing something that itself requires explanation, and therefore haven’t really explained anything at all?

    Not just that Arthur. An intelligence does not have to be a God, nor even be able to interact directly with or have knowledge of the contents of our Universe. The is no part of “an intelligence” other than being intelligent, that said intelligence has to have in common with any of the various hypothesis of God.

    Joseph has previously been made aware of Dawkins’ explicit counter position to what Joseph is attributing to him. He’s already had this challenge put to him as well (i.e. “where has Dawkin’s said this?”). He’s just being overtly dishonest now.

  12. Arrgggh…. The fixed version…

    …are simply positing something that itself requires explanation, and therefore haven’t really explained anything at all?

    Not just that Arthur. An intelligence does not have to be a God, nor even be able to interact directly with or have knowledge of the contents of our Universe. The is no part of “an intelligence” other than being intelligent, that said intelligence has to have in common with any of the various hypothesis of God.

    What evidence (i.e. direct quotes from Dawkins himself, as opposed to your personal interpretations of what Dawkins has said) is there that Dawkins either possesses complete knowledge of science, or has claimed possession of complete knowledge of science?

    Joseph has previously been made aware of Dawkins’ explicit counter position to what Joseph is attributing to him. He’s already had this challenge put to him as well (i.e. “where has Dawkin’s said this?”). He’s just being overtly dishonest now.

  13. Back to the topic at hand . . .

    For a movement which is “purely scientific” they seem to spend a lot of time whining about atheists.

    That’s because it’s not about the science. It’s about defeating “scientific materialism and its destructive moral, cultural and political legacies,” and replacing it with “the theistic understanding that nature and human beings are created by God.” But don’t take my word for it.

  14. […] for picking apart some disingenuous apologia, check out Joseph Harris’ contribution on “But we’re all about the science… really…” at […]

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