June 17, 2014

In Their Own Words IV: The Reason We're Here

In Richard Dawkins’ book The Selfish Gene (1976) we see the audaciousness of a rabid militant atheist. 

In Dawkins’ exact words:
“In a universe of blind physical forces and genetic replication, some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won’t find any rhyme or reason in it, nor any justice. The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is at bottom, no design , no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but blind pitiless indifference. We are machines for propagating DNA. It is every living thing’s sole purpose for being”
The very first thing that needs to be understood about this statement is that it was first written in a book of science by a world-famous scientist. Is this a statement of science? No. In fact, there is nothing at all scientific about this statement. This statement is purely philosophical and at times metaphysical. Dawkins needed to abandon his beloved science and atheism to make a statement like this. None of this, and I mean none of it is based on empirically based observations. This my friends is what is called an unsubstantiated opinion.

I will pass no judgment on the validity or accuracy of this statement because frankly, I couldn’t care less about its accuracy. I am more interested in its underlying intent and vehicle for conveyance. Namely, the fact that it is a scientist making unsubstantiated statements. I am merely pointing out that Mr. Dawkins, to make a statement like this is not presenting a scientific fact or results of experimental truth. In reality he has abandon the realm of science completely and now attempts to become an expert on metaphysics and philosophy while only being versed in biological science.

Metaphysics and philosophy are not his realm of expertise (obviously). What is even more telling is that he adheres to stated “beliefs” because he has stated it as truth with no evidence. He has also not given any contrary opinion for balance which is horrible academically skewed and bias. This is more akin to propoganda and indoctrination (not to mention brow-beating). Sorry folks, this requires a leap of faith on his behalf and an unhealthly portion of arrogance. It is rather hypocritical if you ask me.

At its root Dawkins statement looks to be a genetic fallacy because...
(1) It is being passed off as cold hard empirical fact (which it is not).
(2) Said fact is coming from or being spoken by an atheist scientist as a source of authority. 
As mentioned, what most do not see is...by making this statement Richard Dawkins has left the world of science and physics and has deftly slipped into the metaphysical realm. In particular he is in now in the sub-realm of metaphysics called determinism. Mind you he is not talking about biological determinism here but rather metaphysical determinism.

By bringing up the last statement in the quote, “It is every living thing’s sole purpose for being” He has made ontologically distinct assertions about why a living thing should be here or exist and the purpose behind their state of being (ontology). He has also determined why they exist and essentially their ultimate outcome. Sorry Richard, this requires faith as empirical evidence cannot prove either of these things from your vantage point.

Please Richard, stick to what you do best in your own areas of expertise. It is clear metaphysics, philosophy and logic are not those areas. 

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