06 October 2011

Go and read this!

Sometimes you see a piece of writing so exquisite that all you can do is think "I wish I had written that!" PZ Myers's recent essay on religion, accommodationism, and fuzzy thinking is such a case. He hits every point that makes that mentality so exasperating, and dispatches them perfectly. Go read it now!


Blogger Ahab said...

I think the link is invalid. I clicked twice, and both times it refused to pull up Pharyngula.

06 October, 2011 18:20  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Ahab: It's working for me now. I think the site was having trouble earlier (it was very slow coming up).

06 October, 2011 19:15  
Blogger Shaw Kenawe said...

I really enjoyed that. Thanks for the link.

This past weekend I was walking on my favorite beach on the east coast, Nauset Beach, where you can walk almost ten miles from Orleans to Chatham and not see anything but sky, sea, and sand. It is an expansive and magnificently beautiful spot, and I love it especially at this time of year, when all the tourists have left this part of Cape Cod. You can walk for miles and hear nothing but the sound of the surf breaking on the sand and the wheeling of a gull overhead.

I can enjoy this beach without getting all fluttery about an imaginary being that created it, but by simply breathing in the fresh sea air and accepting the peace and harmony that it offers to me each time I walk it.

I guess it's part of human nature to rhapsodize and credit some incorporeal being when you encounter an awesome reality. But all one really needs to do is treasure it; remember it when you're not there; and be grateful you were alive to appreciate it.

07 October, 2011 12:55  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Humans do seem to have a strong tendency to anthropomorphize, whether it's imputing human thoughts to animals or being unable to look at the wonders of nature without thinking a giant wizard did it. We even mutter at the traffic light to stay green as we approach it. I suppose it may have been adaptive for our distant ancestors to think of the world this way, but it's a big part of what gave humanity this plague of religion. Luckily, many of us now realize it's not real.

I guess right now it's already night out there; I'll take another look at those beach cameras tomorrow.

07 October, 2011 17:01  
Blogger Green Eagle said...

Pharyngula is a big favorite of mine, and this was a particularly well written post. I'd missed it somehow, so thanks for the link.

In the end, if I can summarize it in a sentence, what's going on here is our usual struggle: one side that is interested in the truth and therefore inclines to treat the claims of the other side as somehow reasonable and worthy of consideration, and the other side, with a couple of thousand years of practice at dismissing out of hand anything that interferes with their infantile delusions. That's a mug's game, but it's a hard habit for a lot of us to give up.

08 October, 2011 12:58  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

GE: I think so, and of course the pro-science side by definition must be open to correcting its views in light of new evidence -- that's how science progresses, that's what it is. If religion allowed its dogmas to stand or fall by evidence, it wouldn't be religion any more.

08 October, 2011 14:19  

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