Originally Posted By: Bill S.
Originally Posted By: Revlgking
Does this qualify it as just so much "hot air". Pneumatology is a serious study.
Of course pneumatology is a serious study, so is the consideration of an infinite/eternal "something"..."
Thanks for the clarification
Originally Posted By: Ellis
We are all born atheists

Disagreeing with Ellis's comment that we are born atheists, you respond:
... I think we are born agnostics, and everyone hates an agnostic, even Dawkins, in spite of the fact that he seems to have given some of his readers the impression that he is one.
In his book, "The God Delusion" here is what, in the form of a question, Richard Dawkins says on page two and line eight of the Preface: Perhaps you (readers) feel that agnosticism is a reasonable position, but that atheism is just as dogmatic as religious belief?"

He goes on to point out that, in chapter two, he hopes to persuade people otherwise; that the God Hypothesis is a scientific one about the universe, and, ergo, it should be analysed like any theory. This includes theories we have about matter, including the material body (the soma) we have, the animal-like mind (the psyche) and nervous system we (the psyche) and the human-like spirit (the pneuma), which I feel we are.
I heartily approve of this approach.


On pages 46 to 54, in chapter two, there is a whole section in which he writes about THE POVERTY OF AGNOSTICISM. I assume he is referring to cynical and lazy agnostics (mugwumps)--namby-pamby, pallid fence sitters who make no attempt to explore anything requiring serious thought.

BTW, I agree with him when he points out that agnosticism is a reasonable position,"in cases where we lack evidence one way or the other."

Like the plague, Dawkins, in reference to himself, avoids using the word 'spirit'. On page 181, he describes himself as above--a monist. Unlike dualism, which acknowledges a fundamental distinction between matter and mind, a monist is who believes--Yes, Dawkins admits that he does believe in things--that mind is a manifestation of matter and that mind cannot exist apart from matter. Interestingly, he agrees with the evolutionary psychologist, Paul Bloom, that though we are human animals we are evolved as instinctive dualists--a tendency to dualism is built into the brain. We naturally want to believe that there is a 'me'(a spirit, a pneuma) perched somewhere behind the eyes. This is what provides us with a natural disposition to embrace religious ideas.

NATIVE TELEOLOGY--the result of dualism
Human beings are intuitive theists and, therefore, creationists. We want to believe that we were created by a creator-god and that everything has a meaning and a purpose. "Children are native teleologists, and many never grow out of it... Native dualism and native teleology predispose us, given the right conditions, to religion."... just like moths are attracted to the light which ends their life. This is what easily predisposes us to believe in a 'soul' or 'spirit'. We easily imagine the existence of a deity as pure spirit. If teleologically speaking everything has a purpose, it is easy to take the next step and ask: Whose purpose it? And, of course, the answer is: God's purpose, of course. (p.181)

Richard Dawkins tells us that, like all of us he began the thinking part of his life, as he had evolved--as a dualist. Later, he had to consciously learn, "to be an intellectual monist". Ask him now, as monist: If there is no god who created the universe, our bodies, minds, souls, spirits, whatever--Where did this idea of gods or God how come from. How come we think and imagine the way that we do? That we are spiritual beings who will survive death and eventually meet God?

His answer: All that we think we are is the result of, "an emergent property of complex matter." line 13, p.181 In other words, if you think there is a god who is a supernatural being independent of matter, you are deluded. Dawkins main challenge to theists is: If there is a god separate from complex matter, just give us the evidence. Just asking us to have faith (the blind kind) is not enough."

By the way, as a unitheist, I have no problem with monism. Therefore, I find it easy to accept that GOD/G0D and complex matter are ONE and the same.

Edited by Revlgking (10/30/10 08:13 PM)
Edit Reason: Always a good idea!
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org