PZ Myers Thinks Atheism Will Save The World

September 7, 2008 at 12:39 am (Uncategorized)

At least he’s letting somebody else be the retard this time.

And what has atheism done for science? Well, let’s see: it removed the risk of scientists being burned at the stake for controverting the divinely revealed truth that “the lord hath laid the foundations of the earth so that it shall not be moved for ever” (Psalm 102, beloved of Bellarmine in his efforts to shut up the astronomers and philosophers of the era of Descartes).

Actually, i think setting sail westward to get away from the European theocracy took care of that one.  Nice try, though.

It removed the necessity of having to distort observations, facts, experimental results and observations to fit an antecedent doctrine as far from what observation and experiment revealed as one could possibly get. (Think about seeing the moons of Jupiter through a telescope in an age when the earth was – by order! – at the centre of the universe and man and his man-made religion was the most important thing in it, with the Pope and the Office of the Inquisition daring you to think otherwise.)

Here he confuses religion and politics.  No matter what PZ and his ilk will say about separating religion and education, you can never, ever try to segregate religion from politics.  Some people were protesting this truth at the DNC – fine, but you can’t just erase millennia of history.  It wasn’t a silly belief in a silly god that made these rules, but rather the power, money, and influence of the rulers, as well as their intent to keep on ruling.

In short, it liberated the mind and enquiries of mankind.

Oh, how open minded you are, dear writer!

Decreasing religious hegemony and rapidly increasing scientific and technological knowledge have gone pari passu during the last four centuries, in mutually reinforcing tandem: the less religion, the more science; the more science, the less religion. And this is a universal phenomenon (see the Pew polls on the decline of religion, even in the USA).

Oh, I love it when they do all the work for me.  His first statement about religious hegemony is quite true – this is specifically the notion that one church and one church only is in charge of things.  But reducing this hegemony and watching science thus flourish is NOT tantamount to “less religion.”  It is, logically, necessarily the opposite: with less political pressure from the theocratic ruling class, people are freer to follow whichever faith they so choose.

Asshole.

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2 Comments

  1. Samuel Skinner said,

    “Actually, i think setting sail westward to get away from the European theocracy took care of that one. Nice try, though.”

    There is no excuse for slopiness. The first people to prove the world was round were the Greeks (well, first written record anyway). In fact, one of them proceded to measure the size of the Earth and achieved an accurate enough result.

    However, a better example of antiscience rules would be the ban on dissection, with the consequence that medicine stalled for a milenia. Given that the best they had was Galen… and he was the one who justified bleeding… you see the problem?

    “It wasn’t a silly belief in a silly god that made these rules, but rather the power, money, and influence of the rulers, as well as their intent to keep on ruling.”

    Wow… there appear to be no TRUE Scotsman anywhere!

    “Oh, how open minded you are, dear writer!”

    The truth is not democratic.

    “But reducing this hegemony and watching science thus flourish is NOT tantamount to “less religion.” It is, logically, necessarily the opposite: with less political pressure from the theocratic ruling class, people are freer to follow whichever faith they so choose.

    Asshole.”

    You have no clue on what you are talking about, do you? The new Protesant religions were MORE oppressive- the Catholic church did not manage to run Europe like a police state, but Calvin managed to do that to Geneva! More to the point, scientists have not changed their religion on the drop of a hat to find the one that offers better rates. You might not have noticed, but all the great scientists had a interest in what is true.

    More to the point… well, look at the treaty that ended the religious war. Guess how religion worked? Your faith was whatever the rulers was! You certainly freer. Oh wait- no you weren’t. Previously you could only be Catholic… but your ruler couldn’t tell you what to believe. That belonged to the religious authorities. However, with the Reformation, church and state were not only allied, but in many cases merged.

    The place that gave the most religious freedom would be Poland and the Netherlands… and Poland did nothing of not, while the Netherlands didn’t like people who upset the boat.

    The country that did the best would be England, where the King was the head of the Church, but after the 17th century, seems not to have cared so much.

    To sum it up- you make the classic mistake of assuming the Reformation was a new birth of freedom against oppressive Catholicism. Er, no. It was as much “freedom” as the Puritians were interested in- the wanted the freedom to establish a theocracy, but their neighbors wouldn’t let them.

    I’d also like to point out that “, people are freer to follow whichever faith they so choose.” is, quite frankly, insane. My parents taught me that there was a concpet called “truth”. I don’t know what your parents taught you, but given you believe that people can believe what they want without regard to how it is related to reality… they probably forgot the lesson about consistancy.

  2. Ben said,

    It must be terribly gratifying for PZ to be so feared by religious nut jobs, that one has actually set up a blog for the sole purpose of launching ad hominum attacks against him. You honor him and exalt him with this blog in a way that I’m sure you don’t understand. But it is your more subtle form of endorsement – attacking his position with arguments that are vacuous and indefensible, thereby making the opposition look foolish – that is the real genius behind this blog.

    BTW, the email address above is my “ignore” account. I just use it make my point on blogs like this, but I never check it.

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