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EQUIVALENCE — 19 Comments

  1. I believe the British fascist Oswald Mosley once came on stage to speak to a crowd and started off by doing the fascist salute. Someone from the back said “Yes Oswald, you can go to the lavatory.”

    Probably an urban myth. A goodun though.

  2. They’ve all got their arms sticking up in the air at the same angle.

    B.O. *that* bad, huh? :-X

  3. JCF – no one is seriously suggesting Dawkins is the same as Stalin or Hitler.

    Maybe there’s more of a tradition of turning Hitler into a figure of comedy here in the UK. Though there is in the US too (Charlie Chaplin, The Producers, and all that). Anyone accidentally sticking their arm up in a Hitler salute is funny, really. Especially if they’re holding a giant cheque on the end of it.

  4. no one is seriously suggesting Dawkins is the same as Stalin or Hitler

    I am suggesting that in certain respects he most definitely is. However, the propaganda of Dorkins will possibly cause far more harm in the long run than the other two put together and more. Once, residual faith has been lost we will live in a completely amoral world and our children will be taught to believe whatever the scientific elite say is true at any particular time. As Christendom, with its heresy trials and crusades, was to the Middle Ages, so will Sciencedom be to the next untold generations.

  5. MadPriest said…
    “I am suggesting that in certain respects he most definitely is. However, the propaganda of Dorkins will possibly cause far more harm in the long run than the other two put together and more. Once, residual faith has been lost we will live in a completely amoral world …. “

    No, it wouldn’t be “amoral”, it would be different morals. Not at all necessarily better ones, but morals.

    Morals allegedly derived from religious faith are in essence of the same type as morals derived from some confused quasi-religious faith in science.

    What you are looking at is “scientism”, and, pardon me, but if you want to mount any effective criticism of scientism, then you need to attack its mistaken premises, rather than juxtaposing the alleged goodness of faith as opposed to allegedly amoral scientism.

    Otherwise, it’s all too easy for people to write off your argument as religious sour grapes. The mockery of Dawkins in the pic really doesn’t cut the mustard, since it’s just playing around, and as a serious effort, it falls flat; if you try following up the playing around with a serious argument behind it, almost everyone will simply write off your serious argument and focus on the playing-around — and be dismissive of it on that score alone.

  6. I am using the word amoral here (probably wrongly) because I think morality without an external reference, including eternal and imposed benchmarks of right and wrong, and including reward and punishment, is just an arbitrary morality, infinitely adaptable to suit the requirements of the power group imposing it. This lack of definition renders such a morality the same as amorality.

    And do bear in mind that I’m quite happy to acknowledge the possible non-existence of God and that we may have invented him to be a policeman so that society does not descend into hopeless nihilism. It’s just that, when I look at the world, it is obvious that we are not yet ready to accept amorality and survive as a species. The fact that many of those who campaign for such a universal (a)moral code do so by aggressively and arrogantly attacking the beliefs of those who don’t agree with them is conclusive proof that we are not ready.

  7. A god who rewards and punishes is not necessary for me, because, for example, following the Golden Rule or the Two Great Commandments seems a good thing in itself, without reference to a future reward or punishment.

  8. But what makes it a good thing and not just a thing?

    What makes it a good thing is that Jesus said to do so, and I agree that it’s the proper way to order my life.