My Attempt at Analytic Apologetics: Excuse me Professor Dawkins but philosophically The God Delusion sucks…

Professor Dawkins,images

The grounds upon which the claim, seen clearly on pg. 159 bullet 3, of chapter four rests are not sufficient for the confidence displayed.
You claim that to posit God as the first cause does nothing to stop the chain of infinite regression because God’s existence must still be explained. You provide two grounds for this claim. One is to dismiss the cosmological argument as meaningless. You provide no reasons for doing so. Maybe—and I am attempting to be generous here—it could be argued that this idea can be dismissed in light of Kant’s critique of the cosmological argument (pgs. 77, 83 and 109). If so, you failed to note that his critique rests on the assumption that a necessary being is to be understood as logically necessary, as seen in Anselm’s argument. This is a misunderstanding on Kant’s part. In the cosmological argument necessary being is to be understood ontologically or factually, that is if a necessary being exists than it is self-sustaining and self-sufficient. This allows the cosmological argument to be a fair argument for why something rather than nothing exists making the positing of God as a first cause at least somewhat probable. Yet is seems you would say that to ask why something exists rather than nothing is not a valid question (pg 77). This brings me to the next point which is knowledge must start somewhere. Intrinsic to your argument, and your second ground, in chapter four is that intelligent beings only appear after the long process of natural selection. This is because natural selection is the only theory that has been thus verified by the sciences. The logic is that only those statements or ideas that can be verified by the natural sciences are valid or meaningful. The historical lesson of the Logical Positivists should have taught you to be suspicious of such logic, but if this is your starting point it is one that is not verifiable itself and thus not indubitable or incorrigible. This does not mean that you cannot start here, unless it is shown that this position is self-defeating, but at best this reasoning must be understood as circular. Thus you cannot call someone illogical or unreasonable for starting somewhere else, for instance by saying that the First Cause has revealed Herself. Rather both sides must recognize from where they begin, work out the logical implications of this beginning, attempt to harmonize these implications with the findings of not only natural science but all of human life in its richness, do the hard work of attempting to understand one another’s position, locate common criteria for discussion—like the findings of science—and then see which world view better makes sense of all the data. This will be a long, humbling, exhilarating, and arduous process that must not began with polemics, rhetorical tricks, and arrogance but rather humility and openness from both sides.


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