The Return of the Village Atheist
Published on: August 13, 2010
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  • John Barker

    I have wonder if scientism is a form of autism and that some are shut off from any inner or intuitive sense of the “love that turns the sun and other stars.”

  • Dan

    “We are saved by faith alone—sola fide. In that sense, unless we are Julian of Norwich, we are all agnostics (Greek for “not knowing”).”

    I think that is a mistaken concession to the popularized notion that religious faith is necessarily not based on knowledge. At the very least, religious faith is no less agnostic than atheism or any other worldview.

  • jbay

    Voltaire when taken for everything he said is nothing comparable to the atheist of today. His argument was against the stupidity present in the religion that caused suffering.

    As an example he ridicules the idea that the poor should be required to fast at all because they fast 200 days out of the year. He was outraged by the evils present in the clergy and yes he was somewhat anti-semitic but he also displays a faith in God.

    As for me I tend toward Gandhi’s response to an Evangelical Christian when asked what he was although I to am Lutheran.

  • “Fundamentalism is a decision to avoid the mystery of the human condition.”
    I like that.

    As for breathtakingly beautiful landscapes beign evidence of God, in any sense, I’d say no. While God may or many not have created the landscape, beauty isn’t inherent to it, it’s something we ourselves provide through out response to it.

  • Mika Luoma-aho

    What an excellent post. Thank you Prof Berger!

  • Brendan

    Well done, Prof. Berger! Exactly why I’m an Evangelical but not a Fundamentalist (in that sense). Dead-on comment about Karl Popper’s falsifiability criterion being oddly applied by the New Atheists. I’d say this growing Fundamentalism on both sides is a reaction to a capricious and cruel world by clinging to a rock of certainty.

    Re: YogaforCynics, I stand by C. S. Lewis (in Abolition of Man) that our sense of beauty in relation to a landscape is more than sentiment, but reflects a reality. Though our sense of beauty, morality or other things may be distorted, waterfalls (for instance) really are beautiful, and to fail to call them such is not merely a different response, but a failure to correspond to reality. Beauty is real and inherent, and a powerful argument for the Artist/Creator, though our sense of beauty may be corrupted.

  • Jarus

    Thank you very much Professor Berger for these words. It is indeed true that such people like Dawkins have much more in common with fanatic attitude than anything that would at least resemble scientific approach to religion. It is noticeable that this current is much more common in Europe than anywhere else in the world.

  • Nightswolf

    Heb 11:1 (KJV) Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

    Natural things which can’t not be seen with the human eye, yet you believe in these…
    Air, gravity,time, viruses bacteria, atoms, wind, radiation,mitochondria and chloroplasts, prokaryotic cells so if all these have existed long before you ever believe in them…why is it so unreasonable to believe in a Sovereign Supernatural being…God?
    http://nightswolf.wordpress.com/

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