At risk of being dismissed as a "troll", may I submit this Paper for discussion. I've bought & read Jesse Bering's "The God Instinct", and it was a waste of money & a waste of time.
"JESSE BERING - SON OF DAWKINS"
A Short Paper by Richard W. Symonds. Member of International Society For Philosophers (ISFP) - December 31 2010
"GOD IS...A SOPHISTICATED COGNITIVE ILLUSION"
('The God Instinct' by Jesse Bering - NB Publishing 2011)
.1 This Paper seeks to show it is not the vast majority of people Jesse Bering believes to be living an "illusion" - but Bering himself.
.2 I mean "illusion" in the sense that, say, the clever people in Galileo's time - who built a vast, monolithic body of knowledge on the (false) assumption the Sun went round the Earth - were living an illusion...and (unintentionally) deluded countless millions of the not-so-clever in that false belief.
.3 Jesse Bering ("Son of Dawkins") and Richard Dawkins ("The God Delusion") - both committed 'Blind Faith' Evolutionists & Moral Relativists - have built a vast, monolithic body of knowledge on the (false) belief that Human Beings are just Animals - not unique Moral Beings - and are deluding countless millions of the not-so-clever in that false belief.
.4 70 years ago, Philosopher & Moral Realist 'Professor' CEM Joad (1891-1953) pleaded with his colleagues to mend their newly-found philosophical ways (eg Moral Relativism, Logical Positivism & Animal Behaviourism), predicting that failure to do so would render Philosophy (& Psychology) increasingly irrelevant – and increasingly vulnerable to totalitarian thought.
.5 CEMJ’s warning ‘fell on deaf ears’ in his time – and continues to do so….except for a few readers of Cambridge University’s Alumni Magazine (”Essay : In Defence Of Moral Philosophy” by Professor Simon Blackburn – Michaelmas 2009 Edition), and adherents to Mega Theory.
.6 Totalitarianism, which George Orwell – a contemporary of Joad – was warning against in 1949, was already prevalent within the social and economic culture of the time – primarily due to the ‘false teachers’ of philosophical relativism (eg Wittgenstein & The Vienna Circle). Times have not changed. 'False teachers', like Bering & Dawkins, continue to successfully peddle this increasingly-obsolete, biologically-rooted-only, Darwinian Evolutionary Psychology.
.7 Cyril Joad, as a Moral Philosopher, was warning against Moral Relativism 9 years earlier than Orwell :
In 1940, Joad warned his profession of the dangers in rejecting its ‘Classical’ tradition (eg Plato’s ‘Forms’ of Truth, Beauty & Goodness), and pleaded for a return to that tradition (”Appeal To Philosophers”, University of London Aristotelian Society – XL 1940).
Dr. CEM Joad continued to warn – but nobody was listening….except a few debaters at Oxford University:
.8 In June 1950, 5 months after Orwell’s death (and 3 years before his own), Cyril Joad won an Oxford Union Debate : “That This House Regrets The Influence Exercised By The U.S. As The Dominant Power Among The Democratic Nations” – resulting in Randolph Churchill accusing him of being a “Third Class Socrates”.
.9 ‘Professional Outcast’ Joad, also a celebrity wartime BBC Brains Trust panellist, was treated with ridicule, contempt and disdain by most professional philosophers of the time – especially Bertrand Russell – and his warnings were ignored and dismissed within his profession, and beyond – and remain so.
.10 CEMJ was a Moral Realist – in direct opposition to Moral Relativists – and later developed his “Transcendence-Immanence” ideas in his last book: “Recovery of Belief – A Restatement of Christian Philosophy” (Faber & Faber 1952)
.11 Today, we can’t say we were not warned of this ‘totalitarian’ danger – now more prevalent than ever – and we can’t say moral philosophy (& philosophers) have had nothing to say in dealing with the problems which continue to haunt us.
.12 Joad is still ’shouting from the rooftops’ – through his many books – but we need to understand (and deal with) the unpalatable reasons why such clear warnings are still loudly ‘falling on deaf ears’.
.13 One 'deaf ear' is Bering - the other 'loud mouth' is Dawkins. They are the deluded ones. Be warned.
.14 A greater understanding of Moral Realism (especially through the work of Moral Philosopher CEM Joad) – and an unequivocal rejection of Evolutionists & Moral Relativists (especially Bering & Dawkins) - will be two critical pre-conditions for Humanity’s survival in the early 21st century.
Richard W. Symonds MCIPD is a Member of the International Society For Philosophers ( http://www.isfp.co.uk ),
Founder Member of The Cyril Joad Society (CJS) & Gatwick City of Ideas (GCI)
Author of “The Mega Instinct : Mega Theory & The Moral Revolution"
He can be contacted by Email : firstname.lastname@example.org or at GCI :
"By rejecting your claim that it is raining, I am not making any statement that requires faith as a basis"
Yes you are Shine. You are simply having faith in your own beliefs.
How have I even established my own beliefs? All that I have done is reject your belief.
I'm earnestly confused. How can rejecting your claim be equivalent to making separate claim?
You made an assertion. I did not accept your assertion. In this interaction, I'm failing to see where I established any belief that would require faith.
You have your cherished beliefs - I have mine. They clash. We disagree.
But again, where have I stated any belief, cherished or otherwise? Yes, I disagree with the validity of your beliefs based upon a lack of evidence. But this is different than if I were to possess beliefs that actively contradicted your own.
Let's say that you like to play tennis. I do not like to play tennis. But my lack of participation in the sport of tennis does not necessarily imply that I play soccer or any other sport. Maybe I just abstain from playing sports altogether.
This is how I see the interaction. My lack of participation in your belief does not imply that I participate in any belief, contrary to your own or otherwise.
But we don't kill each other because of the clash or disagreement.
This is true. I do not feel aggression towards you for possessing a belief that I do not share. Likewise, I assume that you do not feel aggression towards me for not sharing your belief.
I seriously don't understand what is so friggin' hard to understand about the concept of "lack of belief".
Hey Richard, for the Atheist, skepticism is the default position. To move us beyond skepticism you need to provide evidence. Otherwise, we will remain at the default position on any given topic.
No, Shine is not setting forth any position or belief. She is simply stating that she does not accept your belief, due to a lack of evidence.
As a further example, I could state that "I have a cat in my lap." If I provide no other information or evidence other than that statement, you have three options.
1. Accept my claim and agree that I have a cat in my lap. This would be taking my statement on faith.
2. Reject my claim and state that I do not have a cat in my lap. This would also be a position of faith, as there is no evidence to support the claim.
3. Reject my claim and say that there is not enough evidence to say one way or another. This is position that Shine is taking.
Excellent example, Dave.
Wait...maybe the cat on your lap is "evidence" of the rain! After all, cats do hate to get wet and would certainly seek a warm spot to curl up if they were to flee a rainstorm. Now we can delve into logical fallacies regarding valid evidence. ;)