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Any other Richard Dawkins fans?
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Author:  justinhanlon [ 06 Sep 2011, 02:45 ]
Post subject:  Any other Richard Dawkins fans?

Came across this great quote: "Our indulgence of irrational superstition is not harmless. It profoundly undermines civilization. Reason and respect for evidence are the source of our progress. We must safeguard against fundamentalists and those that profit from obscuring the truth."

Author:  NrrdGrrl [ 08 Sep 2011, 14:25 ]
Post subject:  Re: Any other Richard Dawkins fans?

YES YES I absolutely adore him. That quote is great. Here's my favourite: "We are all atheists about most of the gods humanity has ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further." It's one of his more famous ones, but it's incredibly witty and has the benefit of being true. Christians/Jews/Muslims don't believe in Apollo or Mithra or Odin, and consider such antiquated gods silly along with the rest of us. Dawkins is simply exposing the absurdity that their god should be immune from the same incredulity.

Another of my favourite things Dawkins has said is that the supposition that people "need" religion to prevent us from committing evil, as well as for comfort (without religion, apparently we'd all be doing awful things to each other and sinking in despair about the fact of our limited non-eternal existence), is highly insulting to the human species. It's true. Religions sprang up in the infancy of civilization, when we knew nothing about the world around us, but everything has since changed. Everything, of course, except the persistence of these superstitions. Time to grow the fuck up!!!

Author:  Ripvil [ 25 Oct 2011, 18:35 ]
Post subject:  Re: Any other Richard Dawkins fans?

I dislike Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, and all other fanatical Atheists for the same reason I dislike fanatical Theists such as C.S Lewis. Actually, I've read the work of all of those men and enjoyed it to some extent, but not to the extent that I enjoyed the more realistic multi-faceted arguments concerning religion of say Carl Sagan(=D), Thomas Paine, Voltaire, Nietzsche, Dostoevsky, Edward Gibbon--In short, the people who those like Dawkins and Hitchens have tried--and failed miserably--to pattern their own work after.

Carl Sagan-"A celibate clergy is an especially good idea, because it tends to suppress any hereditary propensity toward fanaticism."

"Except by sealing the brain off into separate air-tight compartments, how is it possible to fly in airplanes, listen to the radio or take antibiotics while holding that the Earth is around 10,000 years old or that all Sagittarians are gregarious and affable?"

"A central lesson of science is that to understand complex issues (or even simple ones), we must try to free our minds of dogma and to guarantee the freedom to publish, to contradict, and to experiment. Arguments from authority are unacceptable."

Thomas Paine-"All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian, or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit."

"That which is now called natural philosophy, embracing the whole circle of science, of which astronomy occupies the chief place, is the study of the works of God, and of the power and wisdom of God in his works, and is the true theology."

Nietzsche-"Thus do I counsel you, my friends: distrust all in whom the impulse to punish is powerful!"

"Mystical explanations are considered deep; the truth is, they are not even shallow."

Most importantly: "The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those who think alike than those who think differently."

Author:  NrrdGrrl [ 26 Oct 2011, 14:48 ]
Post subject:  Re: Any other Richard Dawkins fans?

Great quotes!

And I agree about the "fanatical atheists" thing, simply because it gives the rest of us a bad name! For this reason, I do actually find Hitchens rather abraisive in person, though his writing is excellent. However, I've always found Dawkins to be a gentleman, which is why I feel comfortable standing behind him as a high-profile supporter of reason. Hitchens can be so rude and blustery he reminds me of O'Reilly and Limbaugh. But Dawkins is usually quite soft-spoken and methodical when discussing religion with theists. The only times I've seen him get really baity were when a smirking Christian condescendingly suggested that he doesn't know the scientific facts, or when some fundamentalist Muslim went off about how Dawkins lets "his women" dress like whores. And in both cases he never became really rude the way Hitchens does.

His arguments, more often that Hitchens', proceed from logic rather than from moral grounds. It reflects his background as a scientist, and really the only reason Dawkins became such a prominent atheist is because he, as an evolutionary biologist, was so frustrated with religious people denying his work. He even describes himself as a moral Christian, wryly suggesting that people take up the title "Atheists for Jesus." I mean, one of his dear friends is Bishop Richard Harries, so he obviously doesn't ostracize religious people in the same way that many fanatical thesists will actively do to atheists. The difference is that Harries is very progressive and tolerant (and actually a really lovely man), and doesn't try to deny evolution. I think that's all Dawkins cares about at the end of the day: scientific truth.

Oh and also.... YAY Carl Sagan, you adorable scientist. ^_^

Author:  katakhom [ 14 Nov 2012, 20:24 ]
Post subject:  Re: Any other Richard Dawkins fans?

Hate Dawkins, but it's a great quote.

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