Posts tagged Richard Dawkins
Posts tagged Richard Dawkins
25th Anniversary of Star Trek The Next Generation: Richard Dawkins and Patrick Stewart are neighbors? How cool is that. Also, I didn’t know the Lalla Ward of the 1970’s Doctor Who series was the same Lalla Ward who is married to Richard Dawkins and co-narrates his audio books. Nice!
Finally, the Reason Rally brings some mainstream media attention to the atheist movement in America.
“Chris Hayes from MSNBC does a two hour show about atheism in America. The panel includes Richard Dawkins, Jamila Bey, Susan Jacoby, and Steven Pinker, Jamie Kilstein (who’s rants at the Reason Rally I thoroughly enjoyed), journalist Robert Wright (an agnostic), and a Christian clergyman who revealed himself as an atheist.” Via Scott Rhoades
Deepak Chopra apologizes to Richard Dawkins for comments on Bill O’Reilly.
This was a well deserved apology and I commend Deepak for owning-up to his bullshit for a change. To bad he didn’t make it on Fox “News” but O’Reilly probably wouldn’t have allowed it.
In the interview, Leo Behe describes how it took him about six months to move from being a very devout Catholic to an outspoken atheist. He also stated that reading The God Delusion was instrumental in leading him to atheism.
Here is one of my favorite Q&A’s from the interview:
The Humanist: What words would you use to describe your beliefs (or lack thereof)? Do you consider yourself a humanist, for example?
Behe: I regret that the word “atheist” is necessary in our society, because it leads to misconceptions about atheism (that it is a belief, or a religion, etcetera). However, as it is necessary in America where only about 15 percent of the population claims no religious affiliation, I do call myself an atheist to make the distinction. The word describes my lack of belief. As for my beliefs, however, I would consider myself a naturalist and a humanist. I believe that humanity has much more potential than many of us realize—and much more responsibility as well. Such a field as ethics, for example, relies on us—it does not rely on God. If we can admit that nobody is guiding us or telling us what to do and we embrace our potential, as well as the fear and uncertainty that come with freedom, we’ll be capable of great things. But we must first realize that these are our decisions to make; if we don’t step out of our comfort zone, we won’t truly realize our potential.
Check out the full interview here.
For obvious reasons, I always think of this Don Addis cartoon when I hear Richard Dawkins referred to as intolerant.
Kevin Myers speaks truth to this bullshit in his recent article Myth of Dawkins as an intolerant, atheist crusader is just that — myth in which correctly notes that “The popular meme of Dawkins The Bigot is the creation of the Christian Creationist Right, who loathe him for the power of his advocacy of the idea that Darwinian natural selection is the sole creator of our living world.”
Hat tip to toomanytribbles for the link.
It appears that the Church of England feels that its influence on society is under threat from the current “less tolerant attitude towards religion” so it has vowed to fight the “new atheism” in an attempt to combat the rise of secularism in Britain. Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury seems to think the Church is under threat from the arguments laid out by atheists like Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens who paint faith as being “a social problem.”
According to a report commissioned by Williams and John Sentamu, the Archbishop of York, the Church must be “explicit about the need to counter attempts to marginalize Christianity and to treat religious faith more generally as a social problem.”
The document goes on to complain that intolerance towards religion is becoming more widespread and can be seen in public bodies attitudes of “suspicion or hostility towards churches and other faith groups.”
“Drawing particular attention to the threat posed by a new movement of militant atheists, led by Dawkins and Hitchens,” the report “says the Church must respond if it is not to be pushed from the public square.”
According to The Telegraph, this “rallying call comes amid fears that Christians are suffering from an increasing level of discrimination following a series of cases in which they have been punished for sharing their beliefs.”
Wow, I wish the influence of Dawkins and Hitchens was that strong here in the states. It would be great for America if our society became less tolerant of the intolerance advocated by many churches and religious groups in this country.
I’m not sure what the English think about this news but I find it a bit disingenuous that the Church of England is complaining about intolerance considering its track record. Also, I wonder if Christians in Britain are really being punished for sharing their beliefs or if it is rather their continuing refusal to cease proselytizing in the work place that is being rebuked?
On a side note, I should also mention that the same Archbishop of Canterbury who is alleging a growing secular intolerance towards religion is also on record for advocating the use of Sharia Law in Britain.
As a secular humanist, I believe in tolerance; however, that does not include tolerance of intolerance.
Note: Originally posted at blogspot on 02/16/2011.
Why We Believe in God(s): A Concise Guide to the Science of Faith
Religion is certainly one of the most powerful and damaging factors in global politics … so anything we can do to help people understand how religion is man-made, anything we can do to minimize the destructiveness or religion, is a blow for civilization. ~ Dr. Andy Thomson
What can an atheist possibly celebrate?
This video does a decent job of answering this question using clips of Richard Dawkins, Neil DeGrasse Tyson and Sam Harris.