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Re: [ontolog-forum] {Disarmed} Reality and Truth

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Patrick Durusau <patrick@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 02 May 2007 16:51:26 -0400
Message-id: <4638F9CE.1090301@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Waclaw,    (01)

Waclaw Kusnierczyk wrote:    (02)

>>On 5/2/07, *Cassidy, Patrick J.* <pcassidy@xxxxxxxxx 
>><mailto:pcassidy@xxxxxxxxx>> wrote:
>>    Debbie -
>>     Not sure how formal your work needs to be, but Richard Dawkins in
>>    his book "The God Delusion" has reclassified all discourses on
>>    theology as "meaningless nonsense".  Does that fit?
>Dawkins says:
>"The dictionary supplied with Microsoft Word defines a
>delusion as ‘a persistent false belief held in the face of strong
>contradictory evidence, especially as a symptom of psychiatric disorder’.
>The first part captures religious faith perfectly. As to
>whether it is a symptom of a psychiatric disorder, I am inclined to
>follow Robert M. Pirsig, author of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle
>Maintenance, when he said, ‘When one person suffers from a
>delusion, it is called insanity. When many people suffer from
>a delusion it is called Religion.’"
Sigh. It is works like the one by Dawkins that gives "science" such a 
bad name in the humanities in general and religion in particular.    (03)

The religion "debunked" by Dawkins in his book is a caricature of the 
theology of any modern (as well as many not so modern) theologians.    (04)

It may be amusing to bash "700 Club" type religion but why not take on 
the more serious (at least in my view) advocates of a position you want 
to criticize?    (05)

There was a very good review of "The God Delusion" in either the New 
York Review of Books or the London Review of Books in the last several 
months. It points out a number of errors and positions not considered by 
Dawkins that are "hidden" in the professional literature of theology. If 
anyone is interested, I can try to run down the citation for the review. 
(For anyone interested in the complexities of the issue I would suggest 
"Does God Exist?" by Hans Küng as a starting point.)    (06)

Hope you are having a great day!    (07)

Patrick    (08)

>Perhaps it would be interesting to argue, chaining to previous 
>discussions, that if *all* people suffer from a delusion, it is called 
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Patrick Durusau
Chair, V1 - Text Processing: Office and Publishing Systems Interface
Co-Editor, ISO 13250, Topic Maps -- Reference Model
Member, Text Encoding Initiative Board of Directors, 2003-2005    (010)

Topic Maps: Human, not artificial, intelligence at work!     (011)

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