Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The neverending debate ...

... The God Instinct. Some notes... (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

... as [William James] wittily noted: ‘Scientific theories are organically conditioned just as much as religious emotions are; and if we only knew the facts intimately enough, we should doubtless see “the liver” determining the dicta of the sturdy atheist as decisively as it does those of the Methodist under conviction anxious about his soul.’ Only atheists don’t usually consider dismissing their own convictions on evolutionary grounds. Funny that.

Now there would be an interesting piece: using evolutionary psychology to explain away evolutionists' convictions.


  1. Yeah, exactly.

    I like how Mark points out the illogic so very clearly: that the same reasoning the atheists apply to others must also apply to them.

    All very well said.

  2. Anonymous12:53 AM

    Hi, I am from Australia.

    Please find a unique Understanding of this conundrum via these references.

    Plus essays from two books.
    The first book was written specifically to address this topic.

    The second book contains several essays on this topic

  3. Here's another view from behind the atheistic scene. The article is called Risk the Game: On William James. It's in the Nation, and written by Marilynne Robinson. Here an excerpt:

    Now, when our mingled nature is overwhelmingly an issue in determining the future of the planet, we fold ourselves into the natural order that only we can threaten, as if it were realism rather than evasion to minimize our singular gifts and propensities and to pass ourselves off as nothing more than the cleverest of the apes. Like old Adam hiding in the Edenic underbrush, trying to deny that his presence has added any new element to the world's being, we minimize the fact that we, alone in nature, can and do make choices whose consequences are profound, endless, unfathomable. Refusing our exceptionalism we deny its essence and mystery—the mind in time and through time, the ponderings of aged civilizations as surely as the sudden lonely insight.