Turn on thread page Beta

The Worst Philosopher watch

  • View Poll Results: Worst/most hated/disliked Philosopher
    Marx
    15
    13.16%
    Nietzsche
    15
    13.16%
    Rorty
    0
    0%
    Descartes
    9
    7.89%
    Searle
    1
    0.88%
    Berkeley
    3
    2.63%
    Hegel
    3
    2.63%
    Sartre
    6
    5.26%
    Derrida
    8
    7.02%
    Mill
    0
    0%
    Rousseau
    2
    1.75%
    Leibniz
    5
    4.39%
    Pyrrho
    0
    0%
    Socrates
    8
    7.02%
    Turing
    2
    1.75%
    Dawkins
    37
    32.46%

    Offline

    10
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Oddjob39A)
    I never ever ever thought that RawJoh1 would bother refer to me as a militant atheist and attempt to defend my honour in the same sentence :p:
    I know, it's incredible. It's so unbelievable that it might just tear a whole in the fabric of reality. Any moment now the Flying Spaghetti Monster will send his twelve meatball apostles down from the skies in the Second Serving.
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    Can I throw my lot in with the 'strong atheist but think Dawkins is a terrible philosopher' group? He's an excellent scientist, but his epistemology is laughably simplistic and, worse, undefended. He doesn't even, as far as I can tell, have any real grasp of the philosophy of science.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by wanderer)
    Can I throw my lot in with the 'strong atheist but think Dawkins is a terrible philosopher' group? He's an excellent scientist, but his epistemology is laughably simplistic and, worse, undefended. He doesn't even, as far as I can tell, have any real grasp of the philosophy of science.
    I concur

    He should stick to what he does best and leave philosophy well alone. Untill he does, as I have said before, he should be quite prepared to accept the accolade of 'worst philosopher' because he attempts to 'philosophize' and fails; miserably.

    Since he rose to dominance in the Hallowed Halls of Knowlege (a.k.a. Waterstones) I feel embarrassed telling people I'm an Atheist.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    anyone who relies on 'god' for their arguments, e.g. berkeley! and descartes is an idiot! satre is my hero
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by s.k.l)
    anyone who relies on 'god' for their arguments, e.g. berkeley! and descartes is an idiot! satre is my hero
    Does anyone else cry a little when they read a post like this?
    Offline

    13
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Oddjob39A)
    Oh and Beekeeper, actually engage with a little thought as to why I would count Dawkins as a 'bad philosopher' before letting your own prejudice and narrow-mindedness barge into the fray. He is a 'bad philosopher' because he produces 'philosophy' books with words like 'delusion' in the title. Oh really Dawkins? You mean Philosophers and some of the greatest minds since the birth of Philosophy as a discipline haven't really thought it through? Oh, you have the answer? Everyone is just thick and only you can really see the truth? Oh, ahhh, I see now, I used to be a real idiot. Gee-wiz, you saved me from looking stupid there.
    No. A philosopher may have thought something through to the best of their ability, they may be the most rational person alive at the time, but I don't see how this stops them from beind dead wrong. And I think the name of the book was perfect, spot-on. Are you not pretending now to know all about psychology, when you're a philosopher? Is this not the same folly that you so readily pounce on Dawkins for?

    Philosophy holds no place for the person who lets emotion cloud their own judgement and certainly not for rampant profiteers.
    Who speaks for philosophy? Certainly not you, as going by this post you don't even seem to be able to control your own emotions!

    Do you want a cogent counter-example to anything Dawkins says or any of his arguments? How about 'I don't believe you' How would Dawkins get out of that? Oh letme guess, I suppose he would just call such people delusional. I see a pattern in his arguments here.
    This is a ridiculous comment. Of all your most vehement criticisms of Dawkins, almost all of them could just as easily be applied to your own style of debate, and I don't even think you realise it.
    I'm arrogant and I freely admit so much, now you need to get off your high horse and do the same.

    As RawJoh1 accurately points out, I am an ardent Atheist, I am just not one of Dawkins' flock because he's an idiot.
    Wtf is the 'dawkins flock'? You sound like Alistair McGrath.

    I also have a lot of respect for Darwin and despise the way in which Dawkins tries to depict himself as his spiritual successor with pathetic pseduo-scientific notions such as 'memes' I would much rather have a discussion about the works of Aquinas/Leibniz/Descartes than the trash Dawkins pedals as 'philosophy' (indeed, I doubt Dawkins is even formally aquainted with much serious theist philosophical works, he probably just gleems what he needs from Wikipedia from the look of his books i.e. the sections of said authors works which would cause the most commotion if he were to 'destroy' them)
    Well I wouldn't be suprised if you're right on this. Life is too short, and I don't see what point there would be in a scientist spending a very substantial part of it reading through theistic philosophy. The religious minions are already busy in Universities up and down the country doing that. It would be much more refreshing if they actually picked up a science book once in a while; it would at the least save us a huge amount of time from having to constantly explain the basics of evolution to ignorant theists.
    Dawkins is a scientist, and is reacting to the growing ignorance of science; something you seem to ignore, consciously or otherwise.

    Atheists are sometimes ignorant of philosophy, myself included, but please do not ignore the fact that just about every prominent theist appears to have a very superficial knowledge of science.
    It is the science departments, not the theology departments, that are closing down up and down the country. I think its clear that we are generally becoming a lot more ignorant of science, than we are about regurgitating and re-interpreting ancient books.

    (sorry if this post is a little nasty and vindictive people, I am simply giving as good as I get and I think Beekeeper's original post attacking me was more than harsh and simply ignorant.)
    Yes I'm sorry, in hidsight my post was a bit reactionary and harsh. I'm merely sick of seeing so much irrational hate for this one particular atheist, and I think that the faction of 'atheists' engaging in it are straining this liberation movement.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Beekeeper)
    No. A philosopher may have thought something through to the best of their ability, they may be the most rational person alive at the time, but I don't see how this stops them from beind dead wrong. And I think the name of the book was perfect, spot-on. Are you not pretending now to know all about psychology, when you're a philosopher? Is this not the same folly that you so readily pounce on Dawkins for?


    Who speaks for philosophy? Certainly not you, as going by this post you don't even seem to be able to control your own emotions!

    Well I wouldn't be suprised if you're right on this. Life is too short, and I don't see what point there would be in a scientist spending a very substantial part of it reading through theistic philosophy. The religious minions are already busy in Universities up and down the country doing that. It would be much more refreshing if they actually picked up a science book once in a while; it would at the least save us a huge amount of time from having to constantly explain the basics of evolution to ignorant theists.
    Dawkins is a scientist, and is reacting to the growing ignorance of science; something you seem to ignore, consciously or otherwise.

    Atheists are sometimes ignorant of philosophy, myself included, but please do not ignore the fact that just about every prominent theist appears to have a very superficial knowledge of science.

    :rolleyes:

    I can't even be bothered anymore.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by The Solitary Reaper)
    Does anyone else cry a little when they read a post like this?
    And a baby kitten dies everytime.
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by RawJoh1)
    Because he's painfully ignorant of philosophy. To take a non-religious example, in his discussion of abortion in The God Delusion, he assumes that we are either religious 'absolutists' or secular consequentialists. This is obviously a false dichotomy. If he had taken even an introductory course in ethics, he'd know that consequentualism is a hugely controversial theory, that there is no non-question-begging argument for consequentialism, and that there are excellent moral reasons to reject it.
    He may well be pitifully ignorant of philosophy, but I don't think you can audience to think rationally about religion. It wasn't ever extrapolate that from his authorship of a single book aimed at convincing a lay supposed to be a rigorous philosophical treatise, and I think people forget that.

    And, as everyone knows, there is no non-question-begging argument for any meta-ethical theory.
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Beekeeper)
    Atheists are sometimes ignorant of philosophy...
    As are many theists... though I'd bet any amount anyone likes that there's a disproportionately high number of atheists among professional philosophers.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by DrunkHamster)
    As are many theists... though I'd bet any amount anyone likes that there's a disproportionately high number of atheists among professional philosophers.
    I have noticed that.

    One of my favourite lecturers (on talking about Locke and Berkeley) remarked when he got to the point about the role of God in Berkeley's Idealism; 'Oh I don't know, I don't pay any attention to all that God stuff. Its all above my head and thats where I'd like it to stay' :p:

    Plus; surely any coherent and professional discussion of God HAS to be a rigourous philosophical treatise?! If it's not then the author really shouldn't bother at all. I mean, its not like its a 'anyone can have a go' area now is it? Untold amounts of people have died, fought and still do die and fight over the whole issue of 'God' and whether it exists - which brings me back to my earlier point; publishing books with 'delusion' in the title and then making no effort to actually engage with academic theology is at best ignorant and at worst a waste of everyone's time.
    Offline

    13
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Oddjob39A)
    :rolleyes:

    I can't even be bothered anymore.
    I take back my apology, you're clearly a tosser.
    Offline

    10
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by The Solitary Reaper)
    Does anyone else cry a little when they read a post like this?
    What's the worst part? Hating all theological arguments, hating idealism, hating Descartes, or thinking Sartre is the best philosopher?
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Oddjob39A)
    Plus; surely any coherent and professional discussion of God HAS to be a rigourous philosophical treatise?! If it's not then the author really shouldn't bother at all. I mean, its not like its a 'anyone can have a go' area now is it? Untold amounts of people have died, fought and still do die and fight over the whole issue of 'God' and whether it exists - which brings me back to my earlier point; publishing books with 'delusion' in the title and then making no effort to actually engage with academic theology is at best ignorant and at worst a waste of everyone's time.
    I don't think so. There's certainly room for a layman's discussion of the arguments. I'll put it this way: I don't think you need detailed and specific knowledge of modal logic, the S5 axiom and Plantinga's ontological argument in order to rationally disbelieve in God.

    Also, I agree with Dawkins in that I don't understand the insistence that any critic of religion needs to have a comprehensive knowledge of academic theology. As far as I understand, theology (minus all the comparative and sociological stuff) relies on a premise the atheists deny. I'm no expert on astrology, but that doesn't mean I have to investigate every claim made by historical astrologers in order to rationally not believe in it.
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Beekeeper)
    Well I wouldn't be suprised if you're right on this. Life is too short, and I don't see what point there would be in a scientist spending a very substantial part of it reading through theistic philosophy. The religious minions are already busy in Universities up and down the country doing that. It would be much more refreshing if they actually picked up a science book once in a while; it would at the least save us a huge amount of time from having to constantly explain the basics of evolution to ignorant theists.
    Dawkins is a scientist, and is reacting to the growing ignorance of science; something you seem to ignore, consciously or otherwise.

    Atheists are sometimes ignorant of philosophy, myself included, but please do not ignore the fact that just about every prominent theist appears to have a very superficial knowledge of science.
    None whatsoever. Unless, of course, he intended to write a book on philosophy and make a philosophical issue his cause celebre. And any philosophy at all would be good.

    Theists talking rubbish about science (hell, anyone talking rubbish about science) makes me cringe as well, but philosophy is my subject and Dawkins goes out of his way to massacre it. The only philosophy that brings as much of a grimace to my face is the crap some theistic philosophers (Swinburne, I'm looking at you) come out with, and that gets shoved in my face a hell of a lot less.
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    And there's a difference between theology and philosophy! I couldn't care less about theology, which is religion-specific. It's the question 'what should we believe and why?' that's complicated, difficult, and yes, academic.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by wanderer)
    Theists talking rubbish about science (hell, anyone talking rubbish about science) makes me cringe as well, but philosophy is my subject and Dawkins goes out of his way to massacre it.
    yes!
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by DrunkHamster)
    I don't think so. There's certainly room for a layman's discussion of the arguments. I'll put it this way: I don't think you need detailed and specific knowledge of modal logic, the S5 axiom and Plantinga's ontological argument in order to rationally disbelieve in God.
    You clearly don't but unless you are aquainted with such things; how will you ever know that your disbelief is sound?

    I'll give you a counter-example.

    I know nothing of georgraphy and have never left a small hamlet in a secluded area of a tiny island nation. Someone asks me if there is such a country as Swabonia. I tell them that there is not. They ask why I say such a thing, I answer because I haven't heard anybody else talk of Swabonia and I don't think it rational for such a nation to exist.

    But will I ever know unless I look at the maps of cartographers (deluded or not - those who think Swabonia exists and those who 'know' it doesn't) and draw my own conclusions?

    I may (and in this case I certainly am) right in my initial answer that Swabonia does not exist, but did I lose anything by entertaining the thoughts of others who did (falsley) think such a nation did exist?

    Furthermore, Dawkins often points out that he is never '100% sure' that God does not exist. Well if he's not 100% sure he should just leave things as they are and we will all stick with Hume because in that respect; he is not doing or saying anything new
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    I'm not particularly educated in philosophy, but I know a thing or two about religion, which is more than can be said for most of the more militant theists.
    Offline

    13
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Oddjob39A)
    And that is how Dawkins does himself a disfavour - arguing with delusional nutters.
    Kinda difficult not to when so many people fall into this category and wield so much power, and if you think he only deals with so-called "delusional nutters" then you clearly haven't done your research.

    Hehe its somewhat amusing that you refer to people as "delusional nutters" who hold beliefs that a few hundred years ago would have been rather conventional. Science is doing well.

    No serious theist is ever going to buy or be persuaded by a book called the God Delusion.
    One of the most distinguished theists in the world attempted a rebuttal with the name "The Dawkins Delusion". Try reading it sometime, you'll realise how wrong you are to be slating Dawkins at every opportunity.

    I am an ardent Atheist and even I can see that that is not the way of trying to unriddle the notion of God.
    If, as you insist, you are an "ardent atheist" then shouldn't you be doing at least some reading of current literature? You've picked up one Dawkins book of about fifty, completely ignored all of the attempted rebuttals and chosen to base your entire opinion of him on this. Why isn't Alistair McGrath on your little list? He's far, far more dogmatic than Dawkins, but for some reason you would rather slate the scientist than the theologian.

    As long as he bases his arguments on talking down to people and science, nutjob theists will always reject everything he says because they will just reject the scientific method.
    Science is by far the most effective tool for supporting his arguments, as he always does. Science has been one of the driving forces behind the decline of religion in Western Europe and I don't doubt for a second it will be in the future. Heck, its going to be a matter of weeks before scientists recreate the conditions that were present one billionth of a second into the Big Bang. He's wise to base his arguments on science, not only because he is a world leader, but because we live in a world that is becoming exquisitely dependent on science and technology, and the sooner people realise this the better.

    Unfortunately this is the world we live in but Dawkins really should engage more with what exactly 'faith' is and realize that by its very nature, 'faith' will hold fast against any 'earthly' solutions to God.
    Not really, faith only really 'holds fast' now in the most deprived, improverished, poorly-educated corners of the globe. If we muster together some ethics and do something about these conditions, and as science progresses, I think that religion will be as dominant in the rest of the world in the future as it is in the most enlightened parts of the world now.


    For the record, I'm not even a huge fan of Dawkins. When it comes to religion, he is distinctly average. These constant, sustained attacks on him, however, are unfair. Even if I despised him, I would still have to reasonably acknowledge that his rivals are far worse.
 
 
 
Poll
Did you get less than your required grades and still get into university?
Useful resources

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Write a reply...
Reply
Hide
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.