Atheists: Not so rational as we'd like

FWIW, I’ve been saying this for a long time.

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Jerry Coyne has a reasoned [sic] takedown of that article. I find every quote from it I’ve seen to be objectionable, including the one above.


I did not mean to indicate I was in complete agreement with Lois Lee, but that it’s not hard to find atheists who are not especially rational, and came to atheism for emotional reasons.

Here is the Coyne rebuttal you mentioned, it’s good to - and very rational. :slight_smile:

However, the article requires that this be true of all atheists.

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Which clearly does not hold.

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Nonsense of a High Order: The Confused World of Modern Atheism

Rauser’s point is that we all have our prejudices. I truly believe that atheists and theists can learn from each other.


Good essay. Yes we can learn from each other, if we allow ourselves.

PS: are you the author of that essay?


But if we are merely “an odd little phenomenon that has no meaning”, a “microspeck” from nothing and headed back to nothing, then murder and mayhem don’t present an offense against the order of the universe or a violation of intrinsic worth.


Instead, the suffering of those in the Boston bombing is merely one more momentary, inconsequential occurrence in an overwhelming, violent universe.

Nope. It affects those people and more broadly, all of us. That some people think it’s an offense against the order of the universe or what have you doesn’t make it affect people any more.

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Mr Eastwood, thanks for your comment on the essay. No, I am not the author. :slight_smile: wish I were that smart. We have a similar first name.

The author visits here occasionally, but I haven’t interacted with him yet.

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Rational and infallible are not synonyms for atheism. Atheism is simply the lack of belief in deities. Atheism doesn’t require a rational reason for not believing, nor does it require atheists to be infallible.

I think it is well worth pointing out that we are all humans and are all fallible.


I don’t have a word for it yet, but I simply lack the belief in the miraculous powers of evolution to mimic the abilities of a godlike designing intelligence. Oh, and I don’t need a rational reason for not believing. :slight_smile:

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I have always been fascinated when religious believers try to describe scientific theories using religious language in order to make it look less believable.

True. Rauser has another post where he says that one reason we are attracted to an after life is precisely that–that we don’t find justice in this life, and that we hope for one in the afterlife.

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But that only holds if one accepts that we are the product of evolution. :grin:

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