I recently picked up a book by Richard Dawkins at a thrift store for one dollar. That's about the maximum I'd want to pay for anything written by Dawkins, as it's mostly worthless drivel under the guise of science and philosophy. Why do I say that? Because Dawkins frequently contradicts himself, is not a thinker but rather just parrots the currently accepted Darwinian, evolutionary paradigms without adding anything original to them, does not challenge my thinking, and has an a priori commitment to atheistic materialism and antisupernaturalism that comes out as a genuine hatred of anything religious or theological, without logic or reason. I actually find Dawkins a bit comical as he spends so much time and effort fighting against something he claims doesn't even exist. Of course, as an unbeliever he's making a pretty nice profit off the God he claims does not exist and assuring people that they're nothing but rearranged colon contents (his net worth is estimated at $10 million), though one wonders if he'd be among the first to begrudge a believer in God making that kind of money. Worth mentioning too is that his website has a "donation" option. Imagine that! I thought only "religious people" asked for your money!
The book is entitled, The Magic of Reality : How We Know What's Really True. The title itself is contradictory because, as Dawkins succinctly avers, "science" is continually correcting itself, falsifying the old, proposing the new in its place. Hence, and as history so clearly shows, what Dawkins supposedly knows is really true can be falsified and replaced with something else that we will then confidently assert as "really true" because some scientist or other said so. Every generation has its believers in paradigms that are soon overthrown, but of course, Dawkins is a true believer that what HE believes is right, and the rest of humanity needs to listen up.
Words of uncertainty such as "probably, could, might be, may be, might have, could have, imagine" and so on are used ad nauseam throughout the book, as is common in all evolutionary literature. We are assured, for instance, that alien life "could" exist though we have no proof of it. But we're also assured that the "supernatural" certainly can NOT exist, even if we find proof of it. For example, Dawkins assures us that the only reality is what our five senses reveal to us, including when aided by instrumentation. But he also assures us that life in its immense complexity could only have come about in tiny incremental steps that we CAN'T see, hear, feel, taste or smell, and that our ancestors were fish. Now, why is it that my five senses tell me that there is NO mechanism that could possibly have brought life from inanimate matter to its present level of complexity, no matter how many contrived "small steps" we imagine (since we can't repeat them in reality), but Dawkins' five senses tell him otherwise? And why do my five senses tell me that, in the same way that I didn't "see" whoever it was that invented my computer, I know it was designed and built by some form of intelligence? I also did not "see" who created me, but I know I'm way too complex to have come about by a bunch of small accidents of nature. Why doesn't Dawkins see what I see?
Well, it's because Dawkins and his ilk have convinced themselves that there could not have been a Creator, so they have to come up with some pathetic excuse that actually defies the senses and sensibilities (not to mention, umm, scientific laws) to get around one, while for my part, I believe there WAS a Creator because my five senses tell me so. When I look at a flower, smell it, touch it, hear the bees hovering over it, and I think of what it takes for that flower to exist and those senses to function the way they do, my senses tell me this was not an accident that came about in myriad steps up a ladder of complexity that itself has no reason for existence. And yes, Dawkins confidently assures us that our "greats grandparents" [sic] were fish. Yes sir, we see fish turning into people all the time. Our five senses should easily convince us that something with scales that has to be in the water to breathe and that eats worms and has a tail that moves side-to-side and that dies and dries up when it's out of the water, moved onto land and eventually turned into people of all sizes, shapes and colors, learned how to walk, talk, and create complex instruments that scientists like Dawkins can use (assuming he does so - I'm really not sure just what contributions he's made to actual scientific knowledge) to prove to us that complex structures like DNA don't need a creator, just lots of time and, well, MAGIC! And by the way, I might add that no mention is made of one of my pet contentions : humans EAT fish. Isn't that ancestral cannibalism? How do we know some of those fish we're taking out of the gene pool aren't somebody's greats [sic] grandparents?
So, what do we end up with after reading Dawkins' book? Well, nothing new, really.
1. We really shouldn't ask questions like, "What came before the Big Bang."
2. Our ancestors were shrews, fish, amphibians, and simians. (Boredom sets in.)
3. We're all stardust. (I feel sleep coming on...)
4. Miracles don't happen (except where stardust turning itself into fish and fish turning themselves into people are concerned, of course, but that's "science," not miracles, we are assured). Oh, and even if the miracles were witnessed by dozens and sometimes hundreds of people using their five senses, that doesn't count.
5. We should abandon anything that "gods" have to say and only listen to what Dawkins tells us. Which tells us exactly what about Dawkins?
6. In the end, everything really is meaningless, unless we listen to Richard Dawkins. Then it becomes REALLY meaningless.
I don't think I'll be reading any more of his tomes. I started The God Delusion a few years ago, and his arguments were so pathetic and logically refutable that I got bored quickly. The best argument I know against the religion of Atheism blows it out of the water from the get go, viz:
"Mr. Atheist, do you know everything there is to know?"
Atheist: "Well, no I don't." I think even Dawkins would admit that.
"Then, Mr. Atheist, is it possible that something you DON'T know could be God?"
Boom. Done. Easy as that.
But of course, if you wish to believe you're rearranged stardust and convince yourself that you came from a collection of meaningless molecules and have a wonderful future as a collection of meaningless molecules, it would probably take a miracle, or at least magic, to convince you otherwise. Just keep on believing what Dawkins tells you. After all, he's an expert on what he believes doesn't exist.
“The amazing thing is that every atom in your body came from a star that exploded. And, the atoms in your left hand probably came from a different star than your right hand. It really is the most poetic thing I know about physics: You are all stardust. You couldn’t be here if stars hadn’t exploded, because the elements - the carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, iron, all the things that matter for evolution - weren’t created at the beginning of time. They were created in the nuclear furnaces of stars, and the only way they could get into your body is if those stars were kind enough to explode. So, forget Jesus. The stars died so that you could be here today.”
Well, the first antidote would be to take an anti-arrogance pill, but I doubt he has too many on hand. The really amazing thing is how some cocky scientist can make statements like this and the average Joe and Jane just accept them without blinking. So let’s unpack this one…
(P.S. I had a copy of his book, but considered it worthless dribble so got rid of it.)