The Dawkins Delusion Revisited

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Readers who lament the undeserved popularity of Richard Dawkins's book The God Delusion will be heartened by the sharp criticism the book receives in the January 11 issue of The New York Review of Books.  While generally unsympathetic to biblical theism, the reviewer (H. Allen Orr) properly recognizes the amateurish ineptitude of Dawkins's critique of Christianity.  Orr writes:
"The God Delusion never squarely faces its opponents. You will find no serious examination of Christian or Jewish theology in Dawkins's book (does he know Augustine rejected biblical literalism in the early fifth century?), no attempt to follow philosophical debates about the nature of religious propositions (are they like ordinary claims about everyday matters?), no effort to appreciate the complex history of interaction between the Church and science (does he know the Church had an important part in the rise of non-Aristotelian science?), and no attempt to understand even the simplest of religious attitudes (does Dawkins really believe, as he says, that Christians should be thrilled to learn they're terminally ill?)."

"One reasonf or the lack of extended argument in The God Delusion is clear: Dawkins doesn't seem very good at it. Indeed he suffers from several problems when attempting to reason philosophically. The most obvious is that he has a preordained set of conclusions at which he's determined to arrive. Consequently, Dawkins uses any argument, however feeble, that seems to get him there and the merit of various arguments appears judged largely by where they lead."
Posted February 20, 2007 @ 8:57 AM by Phil Ryken
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