September 6th, 2012
09:52 AM ET

Dawkins: Evolution is 'not a controversial issue'

Atheist. Biologist. Writer. Thinker. Richard Dawkins has developed an international reputation of spreading the word that evolution happened and that there is no "intelligent design" or higher being, as you might gather from the title of his book "The God Delusion."

But no matter what you think about his convictions, his ideas have gone viral - including the word "meme."

CNN caught up with Dawkins while he was passing through Atlanta earlier this year. His next U.S. tour is in October.

Here is an edited transcript of part of the conversation. Watch the video above for a more focused look at Dawkins' ideas about evolution vs. intelligent design.

Today, a lot of people think a "meme" is a LOLcat or a photo that's gone viral. How do you feel about that?
In the last chapter of "The Selfish Gene," I coined the word "meme" as a sort of analog of "gene." My purpose of this was to say that although I'd just written a whole book about how the gene is the unit of natural selection, and that evolution is changes in gene frequencies, the Darwinian process is potentially wider than that.

You could go to other planets in the universe and find life, and if you do find life, then it will have evolved by some kind of evolutionary process, probably Darwinian. And therefore there must be something equivalent to a gene, although it may be very, very different from the DNA genes that we know.

I wanted to drive that point home. And rather than speculate about life on other planets, I thought maybe we could look at life on this planet and find an analog of the gene staring us in the face right here. And that was the meme. It's a unit of cultural inheritance, the idea that an idea might propagate itself in a similar way to a gene propagating itself. It might be like catchy tune, or a clothes fashion. A verbal convention, a word that becomes fashionable, like "awesome," which no longer means what it should mean.

That would be an example of something that spread like an epidemic. And the word "basically," which is now used just to mean "uhh." That's another one that's spread throughout the English speaking world.

These are potentially analogous to genes in the sense that they spread and are copied from brain to brain throughout the world, or throughout a particular subset of people. The interesting question would be whether there's a Darwinian process, a kind of selection process whereby some memes are more likely to spread than others, because people like them, because they're popular, because they're catchy or whatever it might be.

My original purpose was to say: It's not necessarily all about genes. But the word has taken off.

There are people who use meme theory as a serious contribution to the theory of human culture and I’m glad to say that the idea of things going viral has also gone viral.

How do you think evolution should be taught to children?
You can't even begin to understand biology, you can't understand life, unless you understand what it's all there for, how it arose - and that means evolution. So I would teach evolution very early in childhood. I don't think it's all that difficult to do. It's a very simple idea. One could do it with the aid of computer games and things like that.

I think it needs serious attention, that children should be taught where they come from, what life is all about, how it started, why it's there, why there's such diversity of it, why it looks designed. These are all things that can easily be explained to a pretty young child. I'd start at the age of about 7 or 8.

There’s only one game in town as far as serious science is concerned. It’s not that there are two different theories. No serious scientist doubts that we are cousins of gorillas, we are cousins of monkeys, we are cousins of snails, we are cousins of earthworms. We have shared ancestors with all animals and all plants. There is no serious scientist who doubts that evolution is a fact.

Why do people cling to these beliefs of creationism and intelligent design?
There are many very educated people who are religious but they’re not creationists. There’s a world of difference between a serious religious person and a creationist, and especially a Young Earth Creationist, who thinks the world is only 10,000 years old.

If we wonder why there are still serious people including some scientists who are religious, that’s a complicated psychological question. They certainly won’t believe that God created all species, or something like that. They might believe there is some sort of intelligent spirit that lies behind the universe as a whole and perhaps designed the laws of physics and everything else took off from there.

But there's a huge difference between believing that and believing that this God created all species. And also, by the way, in believing that Jesus is your lord and savior who died for your sins. That you may believe, but that doesn't follow from the scientific or perhaps pseudoscientific that there's some kind of intelligence that underlies the laws of physics.

What you cannot really logically do is to say, well I believe that there's some kind of intelligence, some kind of divine physicist who designed the laws of physics, therefore Jesus is my lord and savior who died for my sins. That's an impermissible illogicality that unfortunately many people resort to.

Why do you enjoy speaking in the Bible Belt?
I’ve been lots of places, all of which claim to be the buckle of the Bible Belt. They can’t all be, I suppose. I enjoy doing that. I get very big audiences, very enthusiastic audiences. It’s not difficult to see why.

These people are beleaguered, they feel threatened, they feel surrounded by a sort of alien culture of the highly religious, and so when somebody like me comes to town…they turn out in very large numbers, and they give us a very enthusiastic welcome, and they thank us profusely and very movingly for coming and giving them a reason to turn out and see each other.

They stand up together and notice how numerous they actually are. I think it may be a bit of a myth that America is quite such a religious country as it’s portrayed as, and particularly that the Bible Belt isn’t quite so insanely religious as it’s portrayed as.

In situations such as the death of a loved one, people often turn to faith. What do you turn to?
Bereavement is terrible, of course. And when somebody you love dies, it’s a time for reflection, a time for memory, a time for regret. I absolutely don’t ever, under such circumstances, feel tempted to take up religion. Of course not. But I attend memorial services, I’ve organized memorial events or memorial services, I’ve spoken eulogies, I’ve taken a lot of trouble to put together a program of poetry, of music, of eulogies, of memories, to try to celebrate the life of the dead person.

What’s going to happen when you die?
What’s going to happen when I die? I may be buried, or I may be cremated, I may give my body to science. I haven’t decided yet.

It just ends?
Of course it just ends. What else could it do? My thoughts, my beliefs, my feelings are all in my brain. My brain is going to rot. So no, there’s no question about that.

If there were a God that met you after death, what would you say?
If I met God, in the unlikely event, after I died? The first thing I would say is, well, which one are you? Are you Zeus? Are you Thor? Are you Baal? Are you Mithras? Are you Yahweh? Which God are you, and why did you take such great pains to conceal yourself and to hide away from us?

Where did morality come from? Evolution?
We have very big and complicated brains, and all sorts of things come from those brains, which are loosely and indirectly associated with our biological past. And morality is among them, together with things like philosophy and music and mathematics. Morality, I think, does have roots in our evolutionary past. There are good reasons, Darwinian reasons, why we are good to, altruistic towards, cooperative with, moral in our behavior toward our fellow species members, and indeed toward other species as well, perhaps.

There are evolutionary roots to morality, but they’ve been refined and perfected through thousands of years of human culture. I certainly do not think that we ought to get our morals from religion because if we do that, then we either get them through Scripture – people who think you should get your morals from the Old Testament haven’t read the Old Testament – so we shouldn’t get our morals from there.

Nor should we get our morals from a kind of fear that if we don’t please God he’ll punish us, or a kind of desire to apple polish (to suck up to) a God. There are much more noble reasons for being moral than constantly looking over your shoulder to see whether God approves of what you do.

Where do we get our morals from? We get our morals from a very complicated process of discussion, of law-making, writing, moral philosophy, it’s a complicated cultural process which changes – not just over the centuries, but over the decades. Our moral attitudes today in 2012 are very different form what they would have been 50 or 100 years ago. And even more different from what they would have been 300 years ago or 500 years ago. We don’t believe in slavery now. We treat women as equal to men. All sorts of things have changed in our moral attitudes.

It’s to do with a very complicated more zeitgeist. Steven Pinker’s latest book “The Better Angels of Our Nature” traces this improvement over long centuries of history. He makes an extremely persuasive case for the fact that we are getting more moral, we are getting better as time goes on, and religion perhaps has a part to play in that, but it’s by no means an important part.

I don’t think there’s a simple source of morality to which we turn.

What might come after humans in evolution?
Nobody knows. It’s an unwise, a rash biologist who ever forecasts what’s going to happen next. Most species go extinct. The first question we should ask is: Is there any reason to think we will be exceptional?

I think there is a reason to think we possibly might be exceptional because we do have a uniquely develop technology which might enable us to not go extinct. So if ever there was a species that one might make a tentative forecast that it’s not going to go extinct, it might be ours.

Others have come to the opposite conclusion: That we might drive ourselves extinct by some horrible catastrophe involving human weapons. But assuming that doesn’t happen, maybe we will go for hundreds of thousands, even million years.

Will they evolve? Will they change? In order for that to happen, it’s necessary that a reproductive advantage should apply to certain genetic types rather than other genetic types. If you look back 3 million years, one of the most dramatic changes has been in the increase in brain size. Our probable ancestor 3 million years ago of the genus Australopithecus walked on its hind legs but had a brain about the size of a chimpanzee’s.

Will that trend continue? Only if the bigger brained individuals are the most likely to have children. Is there any tendency if you look around the world today to say that the brainiest individuals are the ones most likely to reproduce? I don’t think so. Is there any reason to think that might happen in the future? Not obviously. You can’t just look back 3 million years and extrapolate into the future. You have to ask the question: What kinds of genetically distinct individuals are most likely to reproduce during the next hundreds of thousands of years? It’s extremely difficult to forecast that.

What are you working on next?
I’m thinking of working on another book and it might be some sort of autobiography, but it’s very much in the planning stage.

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Filed under: CNN Ideas • Human ancestors • On Earth
soundoff (3,789 Responses)
  1. Bob

    Something made the universe and beyond. Name it what you want and there is an end we just can't see it.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
  2. TheBigSarge

    the matter was settled yesterday, when the majority of the demoncrats voted to let God attend their function while they confess their desire to kill babies still in their mother's womb. I'm sure the Big Guy (or Big Gal) just loved that contradictory endorsement.

    -TheBigSarge

    September 6, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      Proving that even the Devil believes in God.

      September 6, 2012 at 5:06 pm |
  3. Quoting

    To me life and the universe screams design. How everything comes together at just the right amount to sustain the universe life. Think about a computer network. You have hundreds of routers, switches, and servers. You have all your IP address, DNS, subnet mask, etc....I dont care how much time their is theirs no way by random chance that network will set itself up to work. Even if it has all the information needed to work, it will never by chance work, it takes a creator to set it up

    September 6, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
    • Geo

      It is called TIME. That is how it happens. And if you dont believe in evolution, why is it you automatically jump to magic...that makes even less sense.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
      • Quoting

        Just like I said, time doesn't matter. No matter how much time a computer network has it will never set it self up by random chance even if it has all the information needed. Theirs to much involved, to many little specs, just like the universe. Design is all around. just open your eyes and stop being closed minded. Theirs more to the natural world no matter how much scientist like Dawkins hopes its not.

        September 6, 2012 at 5:05 pm |
      • nojinx

        Who designed the designer?

        September 6, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
    • Tim

      Oh yes, the 'ol watch found a a beach scam. You do know the difference between a biological item and a non-biological item do you?

      September 6, 2012 at 9:49 pm |
  4. joesmith

    it always appears, the rantings of a dawkins, that his desenting arrows are thrust unanimously towards Christianity; we were wondering, just how does the Jewish community, and their Rabbis respond to these writings, especially since their Messiah is yet to come..

    September 6, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
  5. Carol

    Because he didn't bother to read the Bible... and where his "hope". Sadly he dont know what can he say but he need the money to make people fell in his created about ape changed to man! This is no make sense! Sad he dont know what to say but make up... for his money! That's all! I m over 100 percent to believe in GOD! Period! ... Look at the world what happens right now... Bad Bad happens are gains so mean time near for Jesus coming very very very soon! No argue! God will coming very soon period!!!!!

    September 6, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
  6. vernonfueston

    What ever happened to just plain courtesy and respect. Why do atheists these days feel the need to denigrate those who have faith. Only the ignorant believe the Earth is 10,000 years old? I know plenty of well educated people who take that position and believe the Bible, even after learning more than enough about evolution and Darwin to understand it. They simply have faith. I don't follow that philosophy, but I see where they are coming from. If you believe Darwin and the Bible are contradictory, you go with the Bible. I just never really saw the contradiction. But ignorant? Not necessarily. We could all do with a little ratcheting down of the rhetoric. It used to be the Christians who bad mouthed the atheists as morally reprobate. That's hogwash. So is this.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:51 pm |
    • DPD123

      the media fuels the hate vern...
      They make lot's and lots of money off us humans and our differences.
      Thus this story and the fallout from it.

      That is also how this guy makes his millions. Just 'cus he's saying it, doesn't mean he believes it all – he is laughing all the way to the bank. I have a video of an interview of this clown. When he is not allowed to just babble on un-checked, he is powerless and makes a fool of himself. He actually admitted to creative design, then threw a fit and blamed it all on aliens. He looked like he was going to have a meltdown – needless to say the interview was over, lol

      September 6, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
  7. snowdogg

    There doesn't need to be an answer for "why"... it just is. Existence is its own purpose.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
    • Beyond Evolving

      [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XGK84Poeynk&w=640&h=390]

      September 6, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
  8. John Mourad

    I can't disregard the importance of science in the advancement of human'slife on earth nor can I undermine the scientific advancements that brought us many good things like light, cars and so one so forth. However, sciemce had not been able to save us from the destruction that a small tornado could inflict on us. Science is a minute thing when it comes to the great wisdom of God which created this earth and what on it. People like Dawkin have nothing in their lives other than coming up with great theories of denying God's exitence simply because they could look in a telescope and see somethings in the sky and base their theories on. If what Darwin said many centuries ago were right such as we the humans were upgrades of gurrelas, why new gurellas didn't become humans throughout the years assuming that Darwin's assumptions are correct. Every now and then, people like Dawkin with their small minds come to tell us that this world is created from nothing, that a big bang made all the sy nergies and harmony that exists here. These people want to propser on theories that were never proven nor accepted by the majority. Jesus Christ came to this world and showed himself to us. he lived amongst the people of that time and made miracles of Godly propertions. What does Dawkin wants? for God to come and live amongst us! is he God to decide on the way things should be in this world and beyond it. i for one would give a dime to listen or to read any of the writings of this writer nor should anyone even give him the chance of adulterating our minds with his unfounded assumptions.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
  9. Quoting

    Thats why Dawkins will not debate William Lane Craig. He knows how flawed his theories are and Craig will demolish him.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
    • WOW

      Got that right.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
    • LuisWu

      Yeah, right. Delusional much?

      September 6, 2012 at 4:49 pm |
      • Quoting

        So why will Dawkins not debate Craig? Craig has offered numerous times

        September 6, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
      • LuisWu

        Maybe he likes Will Rogers' advice" "Never argue with an idiot, he'll pull you down to his level and beat you with experience."

        September 6, 2012 at 5:14 pm |
    • Beyond Evolving

      Oooh...Really ^_^ why so early to say....^_^

      September 6, 2012 at 4:51 pm |
    • ScottCA

      Science predicts events in the natural world, Religion fails to predict anything.

      The earth is round not flat, The earth circles the sun and not the sun circling the earth. The earth 4.54 billion years old and the universe is 14.6 billion years old, not 10,000. People Evolved and were not designed. There are no gods atop mountains or in the clouds. If religion was wrong about all these other things, then for certain they are wrong about an afterlife for which they have no evidence of existing.

      September 6, 2012 at 5:00 pm |
  10. badbob

    i have degrees in chenistry, zoology and health physics. I have no doubt that intelligent design is behind evolution. Sure it will never be proved that God exists but those that require proof of everything lack true imagination.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      Einstein used Relativity and Quantum Mechanics to prove God exists in 1927.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:49 pm |
      • nojinx

        Wait, someone proved god exists? Why does the rest of the world not know?

        Since ,by definition, science cannot prove something, what method did Einstein use?

        September 6, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
      • LuisWu

        Not true. In an interview, Einstein was asked if he believed in God. He replied that he didn't believe in a "personal" god but in something more along the lines of "Spinoza's god". Baruch Spinoza was a 17th century philosopher that believe that there is a "life energy" that permeates everything in the Universe and that living things are "modes" of this energy. No intelligence behind it, just a type of energy. Today we call this pantheism. A lot of scientists believe in something like that, not in an intelligent supernatural being.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
    • LuisWu

      Those who DON'T require proof are lacking in intelligence.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
    • Geo

      Congrats, you are part of the 2% of scientists that think this way. Although, I would argue that a triple degree holder could properly spell the word "chemistry"...perhaps not...Are your degrees signed by Ken Ham by chance?

      September 6, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
      • badbob

        university of north carolina at chapel hill to be exact. never could spell however.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:54 pm |
    • Quoting

      To me life and the universe screams design. How everything comes together at just the right amount to sustain life. Think about a computer network. You have hundreds of routers, switches, and servers. You have all your IP address, DNS, subnet mask, etc....I dont care how much time their is theirs no way by random chance that network will set itself up to work. Even if it has all the information needed to work, it will never by chance work, it takes a creator to set it up

      September 6, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
    • nojinx

      Wow, you claim to be a scientist then prove yourself wrong in the same statement. I guess that is some skill, though not imaginative.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
    • Tim

      So you're a good exam taker...if you're actually telling the truth. You just need to learn how to think and question extraordinary claims like any real scientist/skeptic.

      September 6, 2012 at 9:55 pm |
  11. LuisWu

    I participated in a study several years ago. A list of questions was sent out to – 1. The general public. 2. Members of MENSA (people who score in the top 2% on IQ tests) and 3. Members of Intertel (people who score in the top 1$ on IQ tests).

    They asked a lot of questions but one of them was "Do you believe in any religion?" 87% of the general public answered yes. 23% of Mensa members answered yes. Point 2 (.2) percent of Intertel members answered yes.

    They didn't publish any "conclusions" drawn from this other than the fact that the higher your intelligence, the less likely you are to be religious. To me it really wasn't surprising. Intelligent people don't blindly accept ancient mythology as fact.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:45 pm |
    • WOW

      Where are the results published? Why do you put this on here without stating where it came from?

      September 6, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
    • Beyond Evolving

      II hope That type of questions to the public was ask too on the early ancients like the mayans etc,,....^_^

      September 6, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
    • The Eternal Satyr

      It is axiomatic that more intelligent people are less likely to "believe" in a religion. Religion was propagated to control the masses; there aren't masses of intelligent people on Earth. The <1% of the world's population that come close to being intelligent are so few in number as to not pose a viable threat to the power elite.

      It is also axiomatic that the less-intelligent more-religious masses are also more likely to have more offspring, completely overwhelming the population with even less-intelligent more-religious people. This is the definition of devolution, which is what the human animal is presently experiencing.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
      • LuisWu

        True.

        September 6, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
  12. Beyond Evolving

    Give the guy to explore more for the rest of his life ^_^...I assure that we will all gonna meet on the same tipping point... it's just like discovering the 1st sound wave on the Bang...for our Atheist. Biologist. Writer. Thinker. Mr. Richard Dawkins there is no turning back for him since he continued and started it on what his view and believes in in life set aside the achievements and symbol status of life because we are all human..hmmmm^_^...maybe he stop Asking and stop Experimenting unlike his early days.....Be warned, my son, of anything in addition to them. Of making many books there is no end, and much study wearies the body. Now all has been heard;here is the conclusion of the matter:Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole [duty] of man. Eccl12

    September 6, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
  13. The Eternal Satyr

    Though Dawkins is less unintelligent than most of the world's population, he's still a staunch materialist who is completely convinced that he thinks with his brain. The hallmark of religion is to be firmly convinced of a thing without proof that that thing is so. The brain/mind duality is still a huge mystery to science, and this fact alone throws Dawkins' atheistic materialism into the same bucket as the religionists he so adamantly disparages. He is not the opposite of the typical religionist, he IS a religionist. He worships matter, believing that there isn't anything else to reality. His deity is "the brain". And, despite how big his appears to be, it's still stuck inside the little tiny box of either "God" exists or "He" doesn't and no other options are on the table. Christians believe that when we die we either go to heaven or hell; Dawkins believes that when we die we simply cease to exist. Could it be that none of the above apply and that something else, something completely inconceivable happens when we "die"? Big brain indeed!

    September 6, 2012 at 4:43 pm |
    • t3chn0ph0b3

      Understanding scientific principles doesn't require "belief"or "faith" of any kind.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:51 pm |
  14. mrtheking

    I agree that creationism is false. I believe that the evidence for evolution is irrefutable. I also believe that there is a spiritual being that exists to create the laws of physics and our universe, and here is why:
    While evolution explains the origin of species, it doesn't explain what created the very first single celled organism, the primeval ooze. Where did it come from? If it came from the Big Bang, where did that come from? The origin of the origin (that we assumed) is unknown, there must have been something before it! This line of thinking leaves me to believe that there is someone who started it. Someone who created an energy that we use today. Hence my spiritual philosophy.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      The global geological record proves that species occur rapidly following a mass extinction, the opposite of evolution.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
    • The Eternal Satyr

      The "Big Bang" is an outdated theory. Read up on Brane Theory and Superstring Theory for something that makes a little more sense than "something from nothing".

      September 6, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
      • John P. Tarver

        As fan of black box radiation I am well aware that something sometines does come from nothing. The Vacuum Fluctuation genesis notional hypothesis makes a lot of sense really.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
      • nojinx

        "something from nothing" is a terrible description of the BBT.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
    • t3chn0ph0b3

      Tarver – explosions in genetic diversity at key points in environmental change are explained quite well using Darwinian selection. You obviousy have no idea what you're talking about.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:49 pm |
    • nojinx

      Wait – where did your spiritual creator come from?

      September 6, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
  15. ArchieDeBunker

    Mr. Dawkins – what caused "The Big Bang?" Where did the energy and matter in the Universe originate? What? How's that? Say again? YOU DON'T KNOW? Mr. Dawkins, you have nothing to teach us – except the cost of egotistical stupidity.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
    • DPD123

      He says it came from ALIENS from another planet – I have it on video !

      He knows creative design is true – he has been too involved in the debate

      Thing is evolution is the only horse running for the God haters, so untill they find a new story to tell, we will keep getting this one jammed down the throats of our un-learned children. They know it is not true.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
  16. DPD123

    He believes in creative design – he knows it's true – I have heard him admit it.
    He is on an all out campaign against God.
    So as a last resort when he is cornered by knowledge, truth, credible research, and resonable argument –
    HE Said that the original creative design probably came from ALIENS from another planet (ya buddy, you are a credible teacher of science, write us another book, tell us about the ALIEN GOD who designed us)
    Kind of like that Tom Hanks movie about Mars
    This fellow is an expert only on deception, smoke and mirrors, doubt and unbelief.
    He makes millions selling his hate books and could care less about science.
    He is NOT a scientist at all...
    He is promoting his RELIGION – atheism – DUH !

    Makes him the ULTIMATE HYPOCRIT and to top it off – he knows he is outright lying to people.
    That is hate – he is a hater
    A GOD Hater

    Funny how everything is all turned around backwards now
    Good is called evil – evil is called good
    Believers are called haters, yet reckless decievers are celebrated

    He is just selling a story too many people want to believe, BUT WOW, what if you're wrong

    September 6, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
  17. Jujst sayin'

    Yo, religious folks: When you realize why you don't believe in all the other gods then you will realize why I don't believe in yours.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
  18. DP

    It is OK to believe in evolution and the bible. The one thing Dawkins cannot explain is how the initial atoms were created that formed the universe. Someone or something had to create the piece that started the chain reaction which lead to the formation of the universe and ultimately us.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
    • bff

      Why is it OK to believe the bible?
      Why do you take a great leap and say "because we don't know it must be god"
      Why isn't it better to say "I don't know but I'd like to find out?"

      September 6, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
    • t3chn0ph0b3

      True, Dawkins is not a theoretical physicist. He leaves the explanation for which you're looking to the experts, which you should, too.

      Read Lawrence Kraus and explore M-theory before you make too big a fool of yourself.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
  19. creative36

    We Know nothing. If anyone say they know absolute truth then they are delusional or stupid. Keep in mind we experience only 1% of the electromagnetic spectrum and Less than 1% of the the accoustic spectrum. We only experience a small slice of actual reality.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
    • ScottCA

      [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9GW7_1b_oHQ&w=640&h=390]

      September 6, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  20. AndyInAtl

    Wow....Dawkins is a pretty pathetic, sad human being without any hope whatsoever. In last straw effort to find any hope, he's clinging to his belief in evolution and fools himself that he won't ever have to answer to anyone for his life he led while on Earth. These are the saddest people.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
    • bff

      So the only reason you are good in this life is because your fear of the afterlife? If you didn't believe in god you would be out stealing from everyone?

      You sir are the saddest kind of person.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
    • ScottCA

      Morality explained
      [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LdBJL1c7xUI&w=640&h=390]

      September 6, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
    • ScottCA

      More on morality
      [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=videoseries&w=640&h=390]

      September 6, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
    • t3chn0ph0b3

      ...and if the only thing that makes you happy is an imaginary astrological marker solar god then you must be a sad person, indeed.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
    • ScottCA

      Richard Dawkins is a decent moral man. Who will be remembered in the future along side those heroes who risked their lives and gave their lives to bring us out of the dark ages of ignorance born of religion into the enlightenment born of logic and reasonable deduction of the natural world, otherwise known as science.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
      • Franco

        Or he may be regarded as a fool.

        September 6, 2012 at 5:00 pm |
  21. Jeff

    String theory provides for up to 12 dimensions, I think one of the 12 is where we will go to when we die. I definitely believe in GOD or a higher being but I do not believe in any organized religion. The laws of physics dictate that energy cannot be created or destroyed so that energy that is you has to go somewhere. There are too many similar stories of near death and death experiences that depict what happens when you die. The spirit does not just disappear. I actually think their maybe 2 gods a divine feminine and a divine masculine. Or it could be one with both qualities as that is how things get created.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • nojinx

      The potential of eleven dimensions is actually called "M Theory".

      We already have formed the theory that matter and energy both can be created from nothing. See Kraus, Lawrence.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
    • creative36

      You go into the dirt when you die. All things return to the earth and all things on earth return to the sun.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      Cosmology has a very difficult time dealing with Relativity and the 4th dimension. The other 8 dimensions are just a way to deny Relativity cancelling the Big Bang.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
  22. Jon Matthew

    It’s to do with a very complicated more zeitgeist. Steven Pinker’s latest book “The Better Angels of Our Nature” traces this improvement over long centuries of history. He makes an extremely persuasive case for the fact that we are getting more moral, we are getting better as time goes on, and religion perhaps has a part to play in that, but it’s by no means an important part.

    What?!? Um since I last checked the Catholic Church built western civilization from the creation of hospitals, orphanages, food banks, the university system, banking system, the most charitable organization in the world! That has fed millions of people, healed the sick and provided homes for the poor.

    That's what the Catholic faith has added to our civilization now what has atheists done for humanity? Your list does not compare to what the church has done in the last 2000 years!!! Talking about biting the hand that feeds Richard!

    September 6, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
    • t3chn0ph0b3

      If you're referring to atheistic contributions as scientific ones, then science has given more to humanity than the church ever has.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  23. JoJo

    For those who argue that science tells us "what" but not "why", there may not be a "why". If I toss a coin, and it comes up heads, there is probably no "why" it came up heads.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
  24. wordsmith321

    If you want to upset each camp, simply affirm that God is the author of evolution. Nothing riles the fundamentalists on both sides of the divide more.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      A simple proof showing Evolution is not the means to species will upset both sides even more.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
  25. LuisWu

    Most religious people are so deeply entrenched in their fantasy world that they will never come out, no matter what anyone says, no matter what evidence to the contrary they are shown. That's their nature. They've been brainwashed from birth to believe what they believe and they don't have the ability to use logic, reason and objectivity to see how silly it really is. The same is true for all religions. A Hindu would argue just as strongly as a Christian, that his religion is the only one that's true, same for a Muslim, Shintoist, member of a tribal religion or any other. Because where you're born is about 99% of the reason you believe what you believe. The culture you're born into dictates what religion you are unless you have the power of high intelligence and are willing to question your beliefs using logic, reason and objectivity. When you do that, a rational person will see that it's just ancient mythology, nothing more. But rational people like that are very few and far between. Most people would rather just blindly accept what they've been told. Mom and Dad wouldn't lie so that's what you believe. It's really kind of pathetic when you really think about it.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
    • nojinx

      What you speak of is one of the things Dawkin's and his organization is working against.

      Don't give your children fish – teach them how to gain the fish themselves.
      Don't give your children beliefs – teach them how to find their own beliefs.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
  26. Coug9

    Mr. Dawkins says that evolution is "fact", and that "there is no serious scientists that doubts evolution as fact". Last I checked, evolution is still a THOERY. So, per the scientific method, every "serious" scientist should continue to question that theory and test it, not accept it as fact. Accepting theories as fact, when they have not been proven, is a type of FAITH itself. So yes, Mr. Dawkins, you have faith in yourself. You are a worshiper of SELF. You are accepting your view as FACT, without testing it. Poor science, and poor logic Mr. Dawkins.............

    September 6, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
    • bff

      Coiug9 you clearly do not know what a scientific theory is. Please do some research before spouting off embarassing things like that.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • LuisWu

      Evolution is a "scientific" theory i.e. "a statement or group of statements that explains the observable facts". The FACT is, evolution exists. The "theory" part is how exactly that happens, what are the basic mechanisms. That life evolves is a known fact, it's just so utterly obvious to anyone that looks around them and makes note of the variations in the different species and the similarities of some species to others. Darwin didn't base his ideas on fossils, he saw very few fossils in his lifetime, he base his ideas on the detailed observations of each plant and each animal hen encountered on his journey. His ideas have been strongly reinforced by the thousands and thousands of scientists that have studied it in minute detail, down to the molecular level for nearly 200 years.

      This when contracted by the writings of primitive societies from thousands of years ago makes religion just look silly.

      Evolution = SCIENCE
      Religion = Ancient Mythology

      Sorry, but I'll take modern scientists over the scribblings of primitive people any day.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
      • LuisWu

        That last part should read "when contrasted by".

        To me it's just laughable that Joe Sixpack or people like him think they know more than thousands and thousands of scientists with high IQs and advanced degrees in science. Sorry but you don't know squat.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      Evolution as a means to species is a notional hypothesis under the scientific method; a theory must be experimentally demonstrable and repeatable. Geology proved that species occur rapidly following a mass extinction 40 years ago.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
    • HamsterDancer

      This the comment that always comes up with this topic. "Scientific Theory" is different than the way we use the word theory in everyday language. In normal talk a theory is basically an educated guess. But a scientific theory as defined by the National Academy of Science is "a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world, based on a body of facts that have been repeatedly confirmed through observation and experiment."

      This means through countless observations and experiments the same results happen all the time. It doesn't matter who you are or what you want the results to be. The same results keep ocurring which naturally leads to this information being the way the universe works on this subject.

      Evolution isn't a theory like "I didn't see him but my theory is little Timmy stole those fresh baked cookies off the stove." Rather it's " We've set up a camera and over a period of years of observations with hundreds of different people watching each time. We've seen little Timmy steal the cookies off the stove. We've set up experiments with different types of fresh baked cookies at different locations throughout the house for the past 20 years and 95% of the time little Timmy has stolen the cookies."

      Little Timmy steals fresh baked cookies is a fact. Evolution is a fact.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:49 pm |
    • Reader

      If you don't believe in scientific theory, you should not believe in the internet, made possible by our understanding of quantum theory, or gravitational theory. In short you should get off the computer and jump out a window.

      They are only theories right?

      Seriously though scientific theory does not mean hypothesis or conjecture, as you seem to think it means.

      September 6, 2012 at 7:58 pm |
  27. Bill

    Most of DAWKINS comments beg the question...this guy is an embarassment to other atheists- many of them have admitted as much. This guy is basically making tons of money running around the country giving "talks", etc where all he is doing is promoting the far-left (Obama) agenda of pure secularism and atheism. If Obama and all the rest of that bunch had their way, the words "In God We Trust" would be removed from all newly-minted US currency...They a bunch of pathetic, arrogant losers!

    September 6, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
    • bff

      Bill, Bill, Bill,
      You had to find a way to connect Dawkins with Obama. I bet you could somehow connect Darth Vader with Obama.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • Geo

      Confused, I thought all you wing nuts thought Obama is a Muslim illegal alien out to steal your guns, and usher in a wave of Nubian gay soldiers to provide late term abortions...I am not sure Muslim atheist works together...

      September 6, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
  28. Sakura2000

    Love this quote:
    "Is there any tendency if you look around the world today to say that the brainiest individuals are the ones most likely to reproduce? I don’t think so."
    Dawkins predicts Idiocracy. The evolution end game for humans.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
    • LuisWu

      And that's where we're headed. Intelligent people use birth control and limit their families. Stupid breed like rabbits. That's why we still have so many religious people in the world.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
  29. AndriconBoy

    Throughout all of mankind’s history, there has not been a single mystery that has been solved that ever turned out to be caused by magic, or gods, or fairies, or spirits.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
    • can't we all just get along???

      lol. you wouldn't know that if a god created science. chicken...egg...
      you can't prove that any of those things don't exist either.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:39 pm |
  30. DPD123

    anyone ever seen what this clown said when he was cornered by the truth ?
    These guys are all INTELECTUAL BULLIES – they prey on the un-learned and will absolutely NOT debate
    a learned proffessional who has done his reasearch or fellow scientist who sees things much different.
    This clown said our planet was seeded by ALIENS and agreed with intellectual design theory.
    His beef is with God !
    When cornered he will admit to the obvious design structure, but absolutely will not give credit to any kind of diety.
    HIS BEEF IS WITH GOD and he has it bad.
    The hardest thing for a male human to do is admit he was wrong.
    It is called PRIDE

    September 6, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  31. oneforall777

    Explains absolutely nothing, another talking head, without any proofs whasoever and has the audacity to say that Creationilists aren't 'serious'. He's full of it, pardon my French. Going to the Bible belt to do what? To defend his theory against God. LOL. Evolution is old hat. No fossil remains have been found showing the evolution of a living oranism into something other than what it was. How can he and others like him possibly believe a Snail is our cousin – way too absurd. You've got to laugh at this nonsense, and he gets paid for it!

    September 6, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
    • Geo

      Yes that is absurd, but the flying space man has a one on one discussion with another human. Telling this special human to put 2 of every animal in the world on a boat (psst there are 5,000,000 different species on the earth today, and 98% of all species that have ever existed are extinct) cause the entire world was going to flood. Creating waters higher than the highest mountain (odd, wonder where all that water came from and went). None of this is absurd at all...

      September 6, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • t3chn0ph0b3

      I imagine you'd rather burn science books than read them. You know what kind of societies do that, don't you?

      Also, the science that keeps your kids from getting polio is the exact same science that explains and embraces evolution. Why is one result valid and not the other? Because one result contradicts some odd interpretation of some religious text you've been given.

      Science has been rolling over anti-progress nuts like you for centuries now. It's not just going to stop because you happen to be of the opinion that it holds no value, which is obviously an opinion that in itself holds no value.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
  32. William

    Richard Dawkins is the false prophet of Atheism and Reason.....

    September 6, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • AndriconBoy

      The fact that you call him a prophet proves you don't understand Atheism.
      The fact that you fail to understand the lack of reason in religion proves you don't know how to think critically.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
      • William

        The guy is agnostic parading around as an atheist. BTW....I am an atheist.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
      • nojinx

        I am an agnostic and an atheist. Anyone who claims to not be agnostic (theist or not) is just conceited.

        Ask them to tell you how they know for certain.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:39 pm |
      • William

        Those are not facts. They are statements about his flawed approach to being.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
  33. ScottCA

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vM5n8jESUEk&w=640&h=390]

    September 6, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  34. speedgeek

    I find the discussion of morality interesting. As a religious person, I do believe an understanding of morality can be developed outside of a belief in God. The question that follows for me, though, is 'What's the point?' Obviously, the answer is that evolution has selected for the behavior and it's easy to explain why: those individuals inclined to work together will have an advantage over those that don't. That advantage is furthered when they seek to advance the welfare of those with whom they cooperate to ensure future cooperation. But that is all that can be said with regard to the origins of morality, altruism, fairness, honesty and the other traits we claim to hold dear. Those 'values' are only the result of evolutionary selection and any concept of morality that attempts to go beyond that is without foundation.

In other words, my behavior is simply another manifestation of the incredibly long and staggeringly unlikely series of chance chemical reactions having taken place over millions of years, resulting in my existence. I am nothing more (morally, ethically, spiritually) than self-aware, ambulatory chemistry. As such, any question of morality or 'human values' as ends in themselves or of having intrinsic worth, is pointless. It seems, though, that another piece is therefore present in the evolutionary puzzle. That is, those concepts of intrinsic value in morality that seem necessary to ensure a 'properly' functioning society, are evolution's final work in humans. They are, therefore, a form of evolutionary self-delusion.

Here, then is my point: if religion, as many claim, is a delusion and morality (so called) is claimed to exist outside of religion, then it would seem I'm simply presented with a number of choices: a self-delusional, godless 'morality' (because it makes me feel better to think that I'm not simply a lump of organic chemistry), evolutionary post-morality (the question of the meaning of life changes from 'How should I conduct myself?' to 'What can I get away with and not get kicked out of society?', and religion. My brand being that found in 1 John 4:7-11.

I consider those options, look at my daughter and choose the last.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  35. He is

    Only fools say in their hearts, "There is no God." They are corrupt, Psalm 14.1

    September 6, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  36. can't we all just get along???

    I don't understand why science and religion have to be at odds. When did that happen anyway? Religious organizations used to be the greatest preservers of knowledge and art, and the places people went to when they wanted an education. But I guess nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • nojinx

      See: Galileo, the excommunication of

      September 6, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  37. Mortalc01l

    For all you "God botherers" out there and your assertion that the Universe, or the Human eye or whatever it may be is "too complicated" and that your particular "God" must have created it, or that the Universe somehow had to be created.....

    Do you ever realize that if the Universe is impossibly complex.. then a God that is all knowing and all powerful and eternal, would have to be MANY, MANY times more complex than the Universe in order to have created it? So your way of explaining away the complexity of the Universe is to choose something INFINITELY more improbable and complex as it's creator?

    "It's too complicated to just have come into existence, therefore an invisible, all-powerful, omniscient deity that has been alive for ever created it"..??? Nonsense.. utter nonsense.

    If God has always been there and is eternal, then why not the Universe? Just because we don't know all the answers RIGHT NOW doesn't mean that we have to resort to believing in invisible beings in the sky that will send us to burn in perpetuity if we don't "believe" in him.

    There's a REASON that 98% of all professional Scientists are either Atheists or Agnostic; if the smartest people on the planet mostly don't believe in a God, they must know something you simpletons don't! For those of you that have no education in Mathematics, Physics, Biology, Chemistry or Geology, I say to you: Your uneducated, uniformed opinion is useless.. It's like a Bushman from the Sub-Sahara commenting on neurosurgery...

    The more educated you are, the more FACT you have at your disposal, the more logical you are, the more you dismiss folk-lore and fairy-tales, the less religious you tend to be... Education= less religious.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
    • can't we all just get along???

      maybe theres a reason that religious people aren't buying what you're selling. your arrogance and insults make it difficult to accept information from you. You are guilty of the same thing that atheists accuse fundamentalists of. just sayin.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  38. Marc Parella

    If God is exists, he/she exists in your conscience, or if your conscience exists, it exists in God. Remove God from the equation and you will still have your conscience. The evidence of God requires only faith; the evidence of science requires evidence. God can only exist with faith but the scientists have a much harder road ahead of them acquiring the evidence.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      Science already proved that God exists

      September 6, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  39. rudix

    I dont like to say it but who really think that evolution is possible...is a little dumb....all at amazon ...type : "Evolution, Science, Opinion and Truth" by Rudi Merom and The Dimension Machine...same place....if you find a plastic bag on the beach...you know its made by someone....but our high unbelievable complicated cell and body....no it was but mistake...or random or whatever you call it....hey all wake up there is a creation ...so there is a creator.....

    September 6, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
    • nojinx

      I guess that just leaves one logical problem: who created the creator?

      Since you claim everything has a creator.

      September 6, 2012 at 5:05 pm |
  40. Geo

    Geo

    I keep seeing "you cannot prove god doesn’t exist". This simple statement is indeed true. However, what science can do is prove the impossibility of the claims within the bible. Thus, substantially weakening the argument for a god, and lowering its probability closer to zero, which is good enough for me...I round down...

    September 6, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  41. Grim

    There is no super-being overlord. How many examples do you need to see gods were created to explain the unexplainable, and by unexplainable I mean that people were too dumb to know what lightning is, it's not their fault they though Zeus was mad, they were just uneducated.
    Sometimes I feel as if humans are like cave men throwing rocks at the moon. Or worse burning witches for natural events. Or now, so scared to just die they need to think there is an afterlife, and of course their reward.
    When will break free from these shackles? When can the rest of the world stop suffering from these religions doing battle for supremacy.
    Humans = a failed experiment, so sad 😦

    September 6, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  42. Sarais

    I believe in God I'm catholic I'm not atheist but I'm not agree with something of the church! Honestly! because there're people says when they're in the church... Oh God please you're my lord you're my life you're my love I LOVE YOU . but when they out of the church everything change EVERYTHING.... :/ to me that's fanaticism! :/

    September 6, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      well said!

      September 6, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  43. Georgia6

    No wonder you look so aged. You lack the vibrancy of the creator to be able to drink from the fountain of youth. I pity you. Wonder who you call on when you have a bout of pain? I am sure it is my God.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  44. Battlecat

    Take any great mind of the past 3,000 years of recorded human history and the chances are good that they've struggled (in some cases, a lifelong struggle) with questions aboutthe existence of a deity, what form that deity might take, whether or not the deity is interested in us, whether or not we should be interested in him/her/it. It wouldn't be much of a stretch to say that the existence of God has been the most enduring, thought-about, and debated question in all of human existence and that our species' most brilliant members have come down on both sides of that debate.

    Keep that in mind the next time someone tells you they've figured it all out. The only truly defensible answer to whether or not God exists is "I don't know for sure, but I believe (whatever)."

    September 6, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
    • nojinx

      That is somewhat accurate. Better to say that gods in general have been discussed, and each of them have eventually been dismissed over time. Hard to imagine that this pattern will not continue into the future, where new gods will replace our current ones.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
  45. True Christian

    You will be judged by God if you vote for a cultist Mormon. Prepare for eternal damnation.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
    • ScottCA

      Your imaginary friend god, exists only in your head and there is no evidence whatsoever to support gods existence.

      The null hypothesis is that there is no god. Since there is no evidence to support the existence of god, the null hypothesis holds as the logical position. To depart from this position without evidence is to delve into fantasy and insanity.

      Just as it is insanity to believe in the 6ft tall green monster in my closet without evidence of its existence, so is it insanity to believe in god without evidence.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
  46. mvac

    It is amazing how self proclaimed intelligent people are not able to present an intelligent point of view.
    A university professor was teaching that man is the crowning acheivement of evolution. He was asked, "if man is the crowning acheivement of evolution, why is he the only spieces on earth that willfully aborts his offspring?" He could not answer the question and the class was sent home.
    These people ridicule persons of Faith and at the same time present unproven theories as fact and expect others to accept and to approve the thoughts of their polluted minds. On top of it all, inspite of the fact that they are not at any level of understanding, they want to teach their self thought out ideas to others.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
    • nojinx

      "if man is the crowning acheivement of evolution, why is he the only spieces on earth that willfully aborts his offspring?"

      Maybe we abort our offspring BECAUSE we are the crowning achievement of evolution.

      Frankly, anyone who thinks we are the crowning achievement of evolution is not likely to be a scientist. That is a very unscientific assessment.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
  47. Brian Sarntee

    So far there is no intelligent response to this: Richard Dawkins shares his knowledge for a fee. His book is $30 hardcover $20 paperback. His speaking events either require an admission fee, or collections are taken at free ones, and his fundraising events require minumum donations of $500 or more. In STARK contrast, Jehovah's Witnesses share scientific knowledge about the origin of life for FREE. They FREELY give of their time and resources, and in the last 10 years over 20 BILLION magazines and books have been printed and HAND-DELIVERED to people in 236 countries in over 540 languages. Jehovah's Witnesses have no motive other than to freely share information. Everything Richard Dawkins has to say is clearly crafted to gain popularity and fame in the media to support his own selfish financial interests. A wise person would not waste their time with such an individual, and conversely should not waste their time with any RELIGIOUS person who has a selfish monetary interest either, which would be EVERY major religious organization EXCEPT Jehovah's Witnesses.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
    • rocinante

      Google Jehovah's Witness International headquarters. Looks like SOMEONE is getting rich off this. There are also allegations that the founder, Charles Taze Russell, was involved in questionable financial dealings.

      Sorry, but your religion is not better or more pious than the rest.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
      • Brian Sarntee

        Ha ha! "Looks like SOMEONE is getting rich off this." Nice intelligent refute. NOT! Everything done in the organization of Jehovah's Witnesses is put towards printing and distributing educational literature, building places for worship, and worldwide relief work in disaster areas. Oh, and some claim about Charles Taze Russell, from the 1800's???? Are you kidding me? What does he have to do with anything going on today? Wow, yet another failed attempt to discredit my valid points...

        September 6, 2012 at 5:50 pm |
      • rocinante

        Your own belief that your religion is infallible, while at the same time insulting the other 50,000 religions, is just another example of the blind faith required to participate in ANY religion.

        In the US of course, churches weren't even required to keep accurate accounting or file taxes up until 2009, so its really impossible for you to say what is going on with the finances of your church. Someone could be buying Caribean Islands for all you know – it won't show up in any accounting ledger or IRS filing.

        September 6, 2012 at 5:54 pm |
      • Brian Sarntee

        "Buying Caribbean islands"??? Where would anyone be getting the money to do that? Do you realize that no collections are ever taken at any of the Jehovah's Witnesses congregation meetings, or larger assemblies and conventions? Do you realize that no one in the organization gets PAID? There are over 100,000 congregations worldwide, and none of the speakers and teachers are paid anything. There are over 7.5 million volunteers who combined spend over 1.5 billion hours each year teaching people for free in their own homes.

        September 7, 2012 at 2:50 am |
      • Brian Sarntee

        Even IF there was a way for someone to secretly MAKE MONEY, what money would there be after paying for the costs of all the hundreds of millions of publications printed and shipped each month, and all the costs to support the volunteer workers' housing and food, and the costs of the materials for the thousands of places of worship that are built by volunteers worldwide each year, and on and on and on???

        September 7, 2012 at 3:57 am |
      • Brian Sarntee

        Listen bro, you simply speak of what you do not know. There is nothing on this planet like the organization of Jehovah God's people in this 21st century. We are as open and transparent and in full view of every man, woman, and child on this globe! We not only let everyone in to every place we occupy, we also systematically bring ourselves to every individual on the planet, at one time or another! Sorry, but nobody can hold a candle to our complete altruism and totally unselfish use of time and resources to provide free spiritual instruction to everyone alive today. That was my point to begin with, the contrast between Jehovah's Witnesses, and Richard Dawkins who simply wants his personal fame and fortune. It makes you question the message being propagated by him, he'll spew out whatever gets media attention, so people will buy his books and pay for his seminars. He probably knows his information isn't accurate or lacks proof, he's just basking in the glory of media attention and gullible fans "ooh-ing" and "ahh-ing" over him. He's just another entertainer or performer.

        September 7, 2012 at 4:02 am |
      • Brian Sarntee

        I just had the human urge to publicly "out" this latest of arrogant "thinkers" who love to bask in the glory of gullible fools who are swayed by what sounds like intelligent speech! People really need to learn to think for themselves, to really dig deep in scientific matters, and draw their own conclusions. Have you ever seen the movie "The Mysteries of Life"? Fascinating discussion of the "bacterial flagellum" and how it is an example of why many extrememy intelligent and well-known scientists believe that life exhibits evidence of an Intelligent Designer behind everything in our material universe. But hey, I'm not out to convert everybody, I just spread the word and encourage others to look into it. I love my fellow humans! I want to help people discover some little-known truths that are forever life-enhancing! 🙂

        September 7, 2012 at 4:11 am |
  48. Beyond Evolving

    The feeling of humble and nothing , 'We are unworthy and we have only done what was all our part in our aeon....^_^

    For in him we live and move and have our being. As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’
    “Therefore since we are God’s offspring, we should not think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone—an image made by human design and skill. In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead.”

    The Signature of GOD to all of us...
    Job 37:7 So that everyone he has made may know his work,

    September 6, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      Genesis 19:8
      Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof.

      or

      Numbers 31:17-18
      17 Now kiII all the boys. And kiII every woman who has slept with a man,
      18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

      Or how about this gem,
      Deuteronomy 22:28-29
      22:28
      If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found;
      22:29
      Then the man that lay with her shall give unto the damsel's father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife; because he hath humbled her, he may not put her away all his days.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  49. Geo

    I keep seeing "you cannot prove god doesn’t exist". This simple statement is indeed true. However, what science can do is prove the impossibility of the claims within the bible. Thus, substantially weakening the argument for a god, and lowering its probability closer to zero, which is good enough for me...I round down...

    September 6, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      Einstein already proved God exists; the proof is Relativity and QM. The difficult part is proving it is the same God we worship

      September 6, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
      • nojinx

        Einstein was an outspoken atheist.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
    • nojinx

      Good comment. If our criterea for what we believe in is to not have proof of non-existence, then there is no limit to what we will believe, including any gods who are past, present or future. You would have to believe in anything anyone said for lack of a method of discrimination. You would be lost.

      September 6, 2012 at 5:08 pm |
  50. ScottCA

    Evidence for Evolution explained
    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K7tQIB4UdiY&w=640&h=390]
    To argue on the side of religion against the process of rational and logical deduction of the natural world, is to paint yourself asinine, for you doom yourself to be proven wrong. A small thing called reality keeps getting in the way.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  51. ggrieser

    Oh we will go extinct, without a doubt. We will never leave this planet, and we won't survive until the end of the earth. Not even remotely close. But hey, take solace in life and death. In 200 years everyone you know and love will be where you're going, be that the afterlife or nowhere at all. You will be equal to Steve Jobs, Einstein, the egyptian gods, all of em. And when the sun engulfs the earth. Everything, technology, art, science, love, will all be gone without a trace except for maybe some radioactive record at the edge of the universe. haha and it will happen in the blink of an eye, to the universe. haha we're like a mold growing on last weeks meatloaf in the fridge. Why do people wonder why other people flock to religion?

    September 6, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  52. Christian Hypocricy!

    the upcoming election will prove two points.
    (a) that christians are believers according to convenience, and
    (b) that republican christians are republicans first and christians second

    Romney is a mormon which is a religion that, as well as co-optingsome parts and characters from the bible word for word, also contradicts and makes a mockery of so many key christian religious beliefs that it should be a bigger issue to christians than gay marriage and abortion. But ... the same way as christians always pick and choose which parts of the bible to loudly proclaim and which parts of the bible to pretend don't exist ... they will ignore all these issues and vote for Romney anyway.

    What do you think God/Jesus will think of you if you give your vote to a man who truly believes that he will one day be a God? Or a man who truly believes that Joseph Smith, a 19th century reknowned con-man, is an equal of Jesus?

    Go on christans, pretend you never read this post. Find some obscure bible quote that will justify you supporting a cult. What a joke!

    September 6, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  53. rocinante

    Actually, Christianity crushed several religions as it was growing and spreading across Europe. You don't see too many druids or Norse or pagans wandering around Europe anymore.

    Christianity proved it was the fittest religion by eliminating and by out competing all of the other religions of Europe.

    The practice of Christianity is an example of evolution.

    Oops.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  54. YoozYerBrain

    @DyslexicDoG
    There he went and explained it all for you cretins in a short, understandable way, in a freakin CNN forum for Baal's sake, and you can't even take the time to understand. Please YOOZYERBRAIN like DyslexicDoG does, cuz gob loves you when you YOOZYERBRAIN! Thanks Dys, you included all the good terms and definitions while being concise. Sorry it wasn't appreciated by the cretins. But, to be fair, they are scared that ADAD the SUMERIAN THUNDER GOD will smite them if they don't cower.

    BTW- does anyone else feel that if they had a parent like this Yahweh cat that they would consider patricide? I mean, any modern family that treats their children as bad as ADAD/Yahweh goes to jail for abuse. I don't want that creepy freak for my parent and you that do should check again into those writings.

    Somewhere in that ridiculous book, JESUS HIMSELF tells you to kill your wife or husband if you want to be fully with Jesus, because there can be no room in your heart for the love of anything but Jesus. WOW, talk to me about this. ADAD and his freak son are mentally unstable beings!

    September 6, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  55. Old Guy

    For a nice discussion on this topic read this article.

    http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/lv/r1/lp-e/0/18866

    September 6, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  56. Dyslexic doG

    Perfect Quote:

    “I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.”
    – Stephen Roberts

    September 6, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  57. ScottCA

    Richard Dawkins explaining the evolution of an eye to small children. This should be at about the intellectual level of most religious people. And if the religious do not understand this video, maybe they can ask a child from the audience to explain it to them.
    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sUjd8x-1xM0&w=640&h=390]

    September 6, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
    • Smoley

      I must have missed something here... Was there DNA at this time? Were these mutations a result of random changes in DNA? Or did the mutations happen and then the DNA.
      How did the brain connect to the patch of photocells? How did the brain know what the nerve impulses meant?
      How did the eyeball grow a lense on the front of the eye instead of the back? Why did the eye grow muscles, tear ducts, eyelids, corneas, retinas, and blood vessels in the exact place they needed to be? Did each of those components grow randomly all over the place until natural selection weeded out the wrong spots? Was this truly a random process?

      There isn't much depth to Mr. Dawkins explanation is there? You were right about it being a very simple explanation. If you are searching for real answers, you won't find them in this video.

      September 8, 2012 at 1:28 am |
  58. Dyslexic doG

    “I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.”
    – Stephen Roberts

    September 6, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  59. Rick

    If you want a good critique of Dawkins from an educated Christian's perspective, read the works of Alister McGrath.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
    • Marc

      The Steven Meyers debates with Dawkins are awesome.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      and read "The God Virus" to understand why people argue in circles with no proof for the existence of a god.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  60. Lisa

    Religion can and has taught us something about mankind...HOW SHEEPISH we act when led by charismatic religious leaders, how judgmental we are of diversity, how intolerant we are of difference, how we really feel about poverty and the poor, and how war is better than civilized debate.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  61. John P. Tarver

    I think Dawkins does a fine job of avoiding the "ant study" conclusion that Evolution is the means to species. By avoiding Darwin's actual conclusion (notional hypothesis) Dawkins is able to support the notion of a slow change over Time; without stating the false conclusion that species are an outcome of Evolution. Soon hpv will mutate and evolution will be in play for the baby boomers; although it is a concept known to Man since Jacob stole his father in law's sheep.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  62. Humpman

    So the only thing i got out of this is that dawkins is a twit

    September 6, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
  63. sandy

    Just because he doesn't have a soul doesn't mean I don't. He's a golem of science; he totally misses the big picture in picking apart the details. No Einstein, for sure!

    September 6, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
  64. Electro-Jesus

    Remember this; every man and women who have died by the hands of religion are a pointless death. Every women and man suffering right now by the chains of religion are completely meaningless. Suffering that can end right now!

    Just think of it! How many couldn't have been saved and still can be saved?

    Doesn't that makes you mad?

    September 6, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
    • smk

      You have a good point but don't blame God for human greed and mistakes..

      September 6, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
      • Electro-Jesus

        I don't blame God or Gods, because he or they doesn't exists. God(s) is/are a delusion created by humans, hence the suffering/sacrifice that is manifested due to religious belief are completely and utterly pointless.

        September 6, 2012 at 5:07 pm |
  65. Sarah Fletcher

    Prof Dawkins is incorrect
    Religion teaches how gullible people can be to swallow any garbage, then kill each other whose garbage is superior trash.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      amen!!!

      September 6, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
  66. todd

    Creationists, remember, if you get an infection, do NOT take an antibiotic! Modern antibiotics are effective against bacteria that have mutated and EVOLVED. When they EVOLVE and one antibiotic is no longer effective against it, science must change the antibiotic to counter the new bacteria. Just find some moldy bread, that should be good enough for you creationists.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
  67. MagicPanties

    My invisible pink unicorn created everything just yesterday. It's all in your head.
    Really. You can't prove I'm wrong; therefore, I must be right.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • smk

      Just watch how a simple protein is made and say that there is no God..

      [Quran 82:7] The One who created you, designed you, and perfected you.
      [Quran 6:116] If you obey the majority of people on earth, they will divert you from the path of God. They follow only conjecture; they only guess.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
      • MagicPanties

        ok, I watched, "there is no god", now what?

        September 6, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
    • rocinante

      Christianity crushed several religions as it was growing and spreading across Europe, so Christianity proved it was the fittest religion by eliminating and out competing all of the other religions of Europe.

      The practice of Christianity is an example of evolution.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
  68. Marc

    I'm pretty sure Dawkins lost his debate with Steven Meyers...like twice. Pretty disingenuous stuff this guy is slinging around.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • nojinx

      I am certain you are wrong.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
      • Marc

        I just listened to Dawkins whole series where he tried to debunk signature in the cell. He got owned....seriously owned. The guy bites off more than he can chew. He's seriously not THAT smart.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
      • nojinx

        Please explain. Can you provide references?

        September 6, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  69. TC

    Dawkins – he is as big an idiot as the creationists. Self-professed know-it-all. He knows all the answers and anyone who thinks different is an idiot. He is the biggest of idiots for all of society.

    September 6, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
  70. billyphillips7

    Here is how we finally end the debate
    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dQVWGmmCYbg&w=560&h=315]

    September 6, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
  71. Old Guy

    Jesus used a simple illustration to identify people. He talked about fruit bearing trees. He said exaimine the fruitage of their teaching, look at the world and the fruitage it bears as a result of the teaching of the likes of people like Mr. Dawkins. Between his kind and false religious teaching the fruitage is rotten. He said, "There is no serious scientist who doubts that evolution is a fact." Well Sir Isaac Newton believed in creation and God. But he probably wasn't a serious scientist. Jesus also said those who follow blind guides will end up in a pit. That is a term we here quite often when referring to life in this present would, the pits. The evidence is clear, men like Dawkins offer no hope only negative views and the result is misery. Jesus taught a message of hope and those who truly listen are joyful. But if you like misery enjoy the pit of dispair!

    September 6, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      the only evidence that Jesus even existed is a bronze age story book written by goat herders with alterior motives.

      The stories of Christianity are not even original. They are borrowed directly from earlier mythology from the Middle East. Genesis and Exodus, for example, are clearly based on earlier Babylonian myths such as The Epic of Gilgamesh, and the Jesus story itself is straight from the stories about Apollonius of Tyana, Horus and Dionysus (including virgin birth, the three wise men, the star in the East, birth at the Winter solstice, a baptism by another prophet, turning water into wine, crucifixion and rising from the dead).

      Don't you dare talk to us about evidence. What a joke!

      September 6, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
      • Marc

        Did you.....did you just quote that terrible conspiracy theorist movie that tried to debunk Christianity? (Bwahahahaha.....) You realize every serious historian, theologian and .... layman enthusiast just rolled their eyes at you.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
  72. Dyslexic doG

    God is an ever receeding pocket of scientific ignorance
    - deGràsse Tyson 1:1

    September 6, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
  73. smk

    [Quran 6:116] If you obey the majority of people on earth, they will divert you from the path of God. They follow only conjecture; they only guess.

    [Quran 82:7] The One who created you, designed you, and perfected you.

    [Quran 3:6] He is the One who shapes you in the wombs as He wills. There is no other god besides Him; the Almighty, Most Wise.

    [Quran 67:2] The One who created death and life for the purpose of distinguishing those among you who would do better.* He is the Almighty, the Forgiving.

    [Quran 42:17] God is the One who sent down the scripture, to deliver the truth and the law. For all that you know, the Hour (Day of Judgment) may be very close.

    [Quran 40:13] He is the One who continuously shows you His proofs, and sends down to you from the sky provisions. Only those who totally submit will be able to take heed.

    [Quran 2:22] The One who made the earth habitable for you, and the sky a structure. He sends down from the sky water, to produce all kinds of fruits for your sustenance. You shall not set up idols to rival God, now that you know.

    [Quran 6:95] God is the One who causes the grains and the seeds to crack and germinate. He produces the living from the dead, and the dead from the living. Such is God; how could you deviate!

    [Quran 6:96] At the crack of dawn, He causes the morning to emerge. He made the night still, and He rendered the sun and the moon to serve as calculation devices. Such is the design of the Almighty, the Omniscient.

    [Quran 6:97] And He is the One who made the stars to guide you during the darkness, on land and on sea. We thus clarify the revelations for people who know.

    [Quran 6:98] He initiated you from one person, and decided your path, as well as your final destiny. We thus clarify the revelations for people who understand.

    [Quran 25:48] He is the One who sends the winds with good omens of His mercy, and we send down from the sky pure water.

    [Quran 25:53] He is the One who merges the two seas; one is fresh and palatable, while the other is salty and undrinkable. And He separated them with a formidable, inviolable barrier (evaporation).

    [Quran 25:61] Most blessed is the One who placed constellations in the sky, and placed in it a lamp, and a shining moon.

    [Quran 25:62] He is the One who designed the night and the day to alternate: a sufficient proof for those who wish to take heed, or to be appreciative.

    [Quran 40:15] Possessor of the highest ranks, and Ruler of the whole dominion. He sends inspiration, bearing His commands, to whomever He chooses from among His servants, to warn about the Day of Summoning.

    [Quran 40:62] Such is God your Lord, the Creator of all things. There is no god except He. How could you deviate?

    September 6, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
  74. Knucklehead

    As long as science and knowledge lead to more labor-saving devices for me I'm a believer and all for it. But if it challenges any beliefs I have or causes me any fear of the unknown, I yell "heathen! infidel!"

    September 6, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
  75. TiredOdaCrap

    Mr. Dawkins: That's a lovely story. And you tell it so well – with such enthusiasm!

    To quote the idiot boyfriend from the Big Bang Theory, "That's the great thing about science. Agree to disagree."

    September 6, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
    • nojinx

      I guess that was a comical misquote of DeGrasse Tyson's "That's the great thing about science: it is true whether you believe in it or not."

      September 6, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
      • TiredoDaCrap

        No, it's a quote from the best sit-com on TV right now. Zack from the B.B.T.

        September 7, 2012 at 9:39 am |
  76. Heywood_Jablowme

    So, can those that make fun of religion (including Dawkins) please tell me what happened before the Big Bang? Where did the Ylem come from? What happened to physics prior to the moment of the Big Bang? Oh, that's right...You can't! Just as faith is required to believe in a higher being (God), you too must have faith that strictly science explains the unexplainable at that moment and before. Atheism is a religion...don't ever doubt that!

    September 6, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
    • nojinx

      No, we don't. We just accept that fact that we do not know the answers. Some people can't, so the fill the gaps with one or more gods.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
      • WOW

        So you don't know LOL.. if you don't know then you cannot accept evolution theory.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
      • nojinx

        Why not? Just because we don't know how exactly life started doesn't mean we can't use the scientific method to determine the nature of our world.*

        * [NOTE: gods have not been encountered during these centuries of scientific determination.]

        September 6, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
      • WOW

        You are funny... then why push evolution as fact and that no other idea is valid.... lol you talk with a forked tongue LOL

        September 6, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
      • nojinx

        Because the other ideas have not been made valid through scientific method.

        Next question?

        September 6, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
    • bff

      So you think atheism explains what happened before the big bang?
      OK, Tell me what this theory is?

      September 6, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
    • Knucklehead

      Nothing happened before the big bang. Absolutely nothing.
      Blink. Blink.

      Think about that.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
      • Valence

        Admit it. Atheists have FAITH that there is no God. They don't know for sure, they just like to argue meaningless points about rationality.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
      • nojinx

        Incorrect. Atheists lack faith that there is any of the infinite number of possible gods that could be imagined.

        Just like you, minus one.

        The difference is we have a reason not to believe. What reason do you have to believe, and why in the gods you chose?

        September 6, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
      • bff

        Valance,
        What a line :
        "meaningless points about rationality"

        September 6, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
      • Valence

        @nojinx, are you in denial or what?? You DON'T KNOW anything for SURE!! By proxy, you have FAITH that there are no "gods", whatever that means. Everyone has a reason to believe any theological or rational thought they want, but that doesn't mean it is true. NO ONE knows the true nature of reality for sure. We "know" what we can observe and that's it. Don't be so prideful in our LIMITED knowledge.

        @bff, I get it. Your rationale is meaningful because it's an educated guess. The only problem with rationalizing is that our own brains do it to hide deeper trues in our own psyche. Your rationale is RELATIVE not absolute... especially when talking about unknowables like God/no god. Sheesh!?

        September 7, 2012 at 11:56 am |
    • Knucklehead

      What happened before there was a before?

      September 6, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
      • YoozYerBrain

        @Knucklehead

        Or to continue the reductionism- What?

        September 6, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
    • TiredOdaCrap

      Agreed. Plus, if the Big Bang could happen once, why couldn't it happen again? If they don't know where it came from, how do they know that there are not similar/exact conditions for it somewhere else at the edges of the vastness of space? How would they explain the fact that only the Earth appears to have life on it? The math would make it almost certain that SOMEWHERE out there conditions are exactly perfect for it – as they are here. And, if there is life "out there", why haven't we found it (or they found us)? I mean, the is billions and billions of years old, how long would finding other life really take????

      September 6, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
      • nojinx

        Check out M-theory, it actually hypothesizes what you are talking about: that multiple "big bangs" occur, each creating its own universe (of which ours is one).

        September 6, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
      • TiredoDaCrap

        Ahhh....Yet another 'theory' that science uses as "proof" of what they don't fully understand. I'm sorry, but if you don't KNOW something, just say "We're trying, but we don't know for sure. What we think is...... However, any thoughts to the contrary of this show that person's stupidity." Wait....That is basically the definition of science!!!

        September 7, 2012 at 9:36 am |
    • Dyslexic doG

      So what was God doing before the Big Bang?

      September 6, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
  77. Jonathan

    Please pardon the typo. Thank you.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
  78. ggrieser

    I'm not religious, pretty much at all. But why the "universe" or "universes". Why/where anything?

    Eventually we'll be able to explain everything to the beginning of time and space, the big bang. Which we know happened, right? But nothing caused it? Matter and space just spontaneously happened? Somewhere?(That's a good argument "for" a god).

    You can say, "it came from another dimension". Ok, so where is that dimension? How many dimensions are there? Infiinty? There's got to be something going on somewhere.

    God will always have a place as the answer to the unanswerable questions whether he exists or not. No matter how much we understand, there will always be another question in the queue. Its believable that life and existence has no meaning at all, and I lean in that direction. But things do exist, no?. Or is it all in one's mind? This breaks the argument away from science into philosophy, which basically hits the same dead ends as religion. i.e. Unanswerable questions and the concept of god.

    I say, if you're smart, you have room for both. Obviously evolution happened. The big band happened. But was Jesus the son of god? Did Muhammed talk to god? Well, probably not, but that's not the point. The point is that the only logical argument is: "you can't prove that god exists, and you can't prove he doesn't exist. therefore, god might exist". I just take it for granted these days.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
  79. Jonathan

    Some atheists are just as dogmatic and self-important as religious nuts. The truth is, wee really know nothing, so why be a smug a__hole about it?

    September 6, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      if you are wondering why athiests and agnostics comment as vitriolically as they do on this site, check out au . org which is a site devoted to the first amendment and the separation of church and state.

      many christians (but by no means all) in this country are behaving like the taliban and trying to change the laws and education to force the christian religion down everyone's throats. this has got to stop.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
      • WOW

        The 1st amendment does not say that religion cannot influence government, it states government cannot interfere with religion.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
      • WOW

        Congres s shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to as semble, and to peti tion the Government for a redres s of grievances.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
  80. Creation Man

    I would like to see Dawkins explain how the eye with it's perfectly centered clear aspherical lens and very sensitive rods and cones that are all neatly connected to the visual cortex came about by random processes.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
    • bff

      [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mb9_x1wgm7E&w=640&h=390]

      September 6, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
      • WOW

        He states it himself. He is only going on his "reasoning" in making his statements about the eye. He has no facts to back it up only an attempt to link things together to make his statement appear to be correct but no concrete proof.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
      • Creation Man

        That is a major s-t-r-e-t-c-h, leaves about a billion questions unanswered. He should read some of the articles in the Journal of Nature by Molecular Biophysicist Harold Morowitz who calculated the odds of a single cell organism coming into existence through random processes is 10 to the 100 billion power – even if you had a trillion years you still wouldn't see it occur.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      There is copious evidence as to the evolutionary development of the eye over billions of years. Try reading a book from anywhere outside a christian bookstore and you might learn.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
    • Geo

      He did...read his book(s).

      September 6, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  81. Dyslexic doG

    Some words of wisdom from Robert Heinlein:
    "The most ridiculous concept ever perpetrated by H.Sapiens is that the Lord God of Creation, Shaper and Ruler of the Universes, wants the sacharrine adoration of his creations, that he can be persuaded by their prayers, and becomes petulant if he does not recieve this flattery. Yet this ridiculous notion, without one real shred of evidence to bolster it, has gone on to found one of the oldest, largest and least productive industries in history."

    September 6, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
  82. HJA

    An endless arguement. If there is God you will know when you die...if there is no God you will never know. End of story, live your life, I will live mine. Debate is futile.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
  83. karma

    ...this guy would be a great buddhist! thinking is very linear to buddha...no wonder Einstein recommended it years ago...

    September 6, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
  84. Dyslexic doG

    Gravity is also a theory. Referring to explanations for set of facts as theories allows for modifications as sceintific knowledge expands, it does not change the fact that apples fall to the ground, or that lifeforms descend with modification over time, or that the Earth has been dated to be approximately 4 billion years old.

    Indeed, I have often wondered why Christians do not oppose the theory of gravity as "just a theory", as it disproves the possibility of Jesus having walked on water. Or, more to the point, why Christians do not willfully ignore the facts supporting the theory of gravity despite it disproving part of a Bible fable, yet willfully ignore the even stronger set of facts proving the theory of evolution because these facts disprove a Bible fable.

    Evolution is a strong scientific theory based on evidence and facts. Evolution has been proven. It has also been proven that the Earth is much, much, much older than 10,000 years.

    Creationism is religious pseudo-science, not even worthy of being referred to as theory in the scientific sense. It is based on the mythology and religious writings of an ancient desert people who had no knowledge of science. Creationism is more or less a set of mental gymnastics, necessitated by a dogged refusal to accept or admit that anything in the Bible might be inaccurate, untrue, or mythological.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
  85. Carm

    He will fry in hell, unless he accepts Jesus Christ as his saviour, and walks with God.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ROTFL ... thanks, I needed that. 🙂

      September 6, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
    • Madtown

      So, people born into areas of the world where christianity doesn't exist will "fry in hell"? Poor troll attempt. Try again.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
    • bff

      That's what God will use as the litmus test for heaven or hell? Whether we accept Jesus as our savior? Really? Really?
      REALLY?

      September 6, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
    • nojinx

      Exactly! Praise Vishnu!

      September 6, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
    • Byrd

      Nice god and savior you have there. Good luck with that, because you're really going to need it after just condemning over half the world's population to eternal damnation for not buying the only book of the month club selection approved in the babel-belt.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
    • rocinante

      How do you know Shinto isn't the correct religion and its you who will fry in hell for not building a shrine to your great grandparents and offering it Saki every day?

      September 6, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
  86. Byrd

    Though I agree with Dawkins that god is both missing in action and unnecessary, I disagree that we are just snuffed out when we die, perhaps unless that's the way you want it to end. As such, I doubt I'll have any chance to discuss this with Dawkins on some post-mortem date, but it's probably no great loss if confrontation is the only real use he can find for his intellect, or lack thereof. But while he is here, he'd probably still more interesting to talk to than any bible-belt preacher or Catholic priest.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
    • Carm

      Byrd, you'll have some 'splainin to do, when you meet Jesus on the other side!

      September 6, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
      • Byrd

        If you happen to run into him, hopefully while driving a steamroller, tell him he knows where to finds me.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
      • nojinx

        Jesus is nothing, it's Mohammed and Shiva that will seriously ruin your day.

        If you are counting on Pascal's Wager, Muslim or Hindu is the way to go.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
  87. Michael George Erdmann

    What is the ...source, cause, and art.... of our newly emerging comprehensive evolutionary worldview? How can the ...moralization, legality, and ethics.... of a greater humanity, from personal, populational, and professional perspectives, emerge to embrace a more integrally political and planetary perspective, perhaps even a pantheistical perspective? Do 'Intelligently Evolving Designs' emerge from ...random, reactive, reasoning, and reconcilatory.... processes deep in The Physics of our World Universe Cosmology?

    September 6, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
  88. joetalks

    PROVE IT THAT GOD DOEST NOT EXIST AS I CAN NOT PROVE THAT GOD EXISTS,,, IF I CAN PROVE IT I WILL BE GOD OF GOD,,,NO YOU CAN NOT PROVE GOD PERIOD IT IS HARD THING ,, DO NOT TRY YOU WILL BECOME A CLOWN JUST A DARWIN. AND THE CLOWN SHOWING IN THE VIDEO.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • Michael George Erdmann

      GOD as the Grand Organizing Development of ...Art, Math, Science, Technology, and Wizardliness.... as a New Global English Calculus {-_-}

      September 6, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
    • Madtown

      Prove to us your Caps-Lock key is not stuck.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • rocinante

      Define GOD as the set of all consquences of GOD's existence in the Universe. Since GOD requires that man believe in Him only as a matter of fate, GOD has mandated that He has no consequences in the Universe. Otherwise, man could verify that GOD exists. Thus, GOD does not have any consequences in the Universe. Therefore, by the definition of GOD, GOD does not exist.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
  89. dowhatsright

    he is right religion will teach us nothing however....Jesus will teach us all the things that science can not. Does science teach us to not kill people? or steal or be a big as*hole. Jesus teaches us to not be selfish and give to the poor and help people in need. but I guess it is how you define religion...I follow the teachings of Jesus Christ the one true Lord. I suppose Mother Teresa was an idiot to this guy....how has he even help anyone on this planet other than fill it with hate.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • nojinx

      Actually, a socially enforced morality teaches all of that. You learn not to hurt others long before you can spell "Jesus", much less talk about him intelligently.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
    • Madtown

      What if I live in the South American rain forest jungle, and I've never heard of this Jesus guy? How can he possibly be the "1 true Lord" if not all equally-created humans on this earth have an opportunity to understand his significance?

      September 6, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
  90. GayAtheist

    Dawkins For President 2016

    September 6, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
  91. joetalks

    Ask this clown to go back to the original from Darwin and he will find out that Darwin could not prove that there is no God,, ask this clown who gave him a sould inside of your body invicible,, ask this clown and the circus of Darwin to prove how from nothing can exist something,,, this is just pure Darwin doctrines ,, Darwin was raised in a church and he got mad with something and now he is passing the ignorance to people.. PROVE IT THAT GOD DOEST NOT EXIST AS I CAN NOT PROVE THAT GOD EXISTS,,, IF I CAN PROVE IT I WILL BE GOD OF GOD,,,NO YOU CAN NOT PROVE GOD PERIOD IT IS HARD THING ,, DO NOT TRY YOU WILL BECOME A CLOWN JUST A DARWIN. AND THE CLOWN SHOWING IN THE VIDEO.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
    • clubschadenfreude

      Prove the soul exists, Joe. Prove that Vishnu isn't the right god and yours is. See the problem? There is no reason to believe in any gods since there is no evidence. What you call a soul seems to be only chemicals and physics. Yep, we're special but not because of some god. We got the a great combination of what the universe has.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
  92. billyphillips7

    Perhaps there is a way to end this debate: This is profound: http://youtu.be/BCYIMyoRU-o

    September 6, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
  93. rocinante

    Evolution is really not controversial. You can validate it just by going to a bar on Friday night. When you see two girls, one hot and one not – who do you flirt with? The hot one. That's evolution in action.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
    • GayAtheist

      That is very funny, but it is seriously seen in the flu shot. each year the flu bug mutates, or EVOLVES into a new strain that requires a new vaccine.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • rocinante

      I was serious. Mating preference is a strong force in evolution, maybe thats why Americans are rapidly becoming taller.

      But yes, there are plenty of other examples.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
    • WOW

      LOL... guess you are not a chubby chaser... different strokes for different folks... lol just ask the gay guy that would not look at either girl... with that in mind would we not go extinct if the gay community continues to grow in population?

      September 6, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
      • rocinante

        I'm not attempting to talk gay politics. Not everything in the whole world has to be about politics. This is a science article.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
      • WOW

        @roc: you are the only one making my comments political fool. You just don't like what I used as an example becuase it blows you idea out of the water dude.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
      • rocinante

        Alright I'll respond to you then since you insist.

        It may be that gay emerged as a form of altruism, a force that hurts the individuals chance to breed while supporting the gene pool as a whole. Nature is filled with altruistic behaviors, many species even die off during the course of breeding to provide food for their young.

        Obviously we don't know yet. This is still basically the Dark Ages for humanity. 100 years ago most of us were driving horse drawn carriages and scratching in the ground for food. There's still a great deal we don't understand, and it may take hundreds or thousands more years before we do – assuming we don't find a way to destroy the species before then.

        September 6, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
  94. clubschadenfreude

    Evolutionary theory, and the big bang theory, are both supported with the same science that creationists use everyday. The computer, modern medicine, modern food production, etc are all based on the same premises that support those things that creationists hate. But they use them either out of ignorance or hypocrisy. Why let a little religious belief get in the way of a comfy car, a smartphone and a corndog? YOu just do a little lying and poof, things are just fine.

    As for religion not teaching us anything, I would refine the point to religion teaches us nothing unique. Each religion thinks it is something special and we see no evidence of that, no gods, no magical truths. Any good that religions, the occasional words about tolerance, helping others, doing unto others as they do unto you, are in the oldest religions we know of, egyptian and chinese. Judaism, Christiainity and Islam are late comers and are full of so much hateful filth that one can hardly find the good stuff (read the bible before you try to gainsay me, I did). We get genocide, slavery, women as property, children to be killed, in those far more than any love and tolerance. It's only by ignoring those parts by all sorts of acrobatic apologetics that we have the relatively decent religions of today. The original practioners wouldn't recognize their descendents.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
  95. Sid Airfoil

    Dawkins in correct about gods (there are none). But it is interesting that the IDEA of god(s) is so prevalent across cultures and millennia. It seems that believing in god has some evolutionary advantage, or at least, that it is no evolutionary disadvantage. I wonder what Dawkins thinks about that.

    Sid

    September 6, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • nojinx

      Actually, it seems secularism has the evolutionary advantage, given our current world state.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:51 pm |
    • clubschadenfreude

      dawkins himself: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYwWZ9QTNLE
      The belief in a god likely does have, or perhaps more accurately had, an evolutionary advantage. It keeps tribes together (we have the right god, they don't), gets people to work together (see cathedrals and offering to the gods). Belief in a supernatural can be a primtive way of explaining the universe, the why and the how. Humans see each other do things and just think a more powerful human can do more. Considering the very human qualties of all gods, the pettiness, need for flattery, etc, that's pretty easy to see we created god and not the other way around.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • rocinante

      It could be that religious cultures are more violent and war-like, and thus dominate and murder the less aggressive atheist cultures. Thus preference for religion becomes a genetic trait of humans.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
      • Michael George Erdmann

        with ...Genetics, Memetics, and Themetrics.... we can do better

        September 6, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
    • Michael George Erdmann

      there is a Transformative Evolutionary Advantage in the ...Physical, Emotional, Conceptual, and Ascensional....

      September 6, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  96. Lucio

    When you create a theory you use it to know why something happen and how happen. If your theory is good you are able to prof many events, but all the theory in the word are not able to prof everything.
    I think that darwin theory is a good theory for some events, in specific condition (for example small time, good for virus..), but the truth theory (i don't know if one day someone is able to discover it) is more complex.

    I want link this video... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3Z-kE8BUUQ&feature=player_embedded

    September 6, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • rocinante

      The vast majority of scientists accept it as a scientific principle. In fact, the vast majority of biologists had accepted it by 1880.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
  97. mitchyj

    What's sad isn't that Dawkins is absolulely right
    It's that most of the world and all of the world's Republicans think he's wrong.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • WOW

      Mitchyj, guess you missed this interview with your boy Dawkins. Plop down, pop you some popcorn and enjoy the show.

      [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BoncJBrrdQ8&w=640&h=390]

      September 6, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        WOW, you have taken a part of a conversation out of context, That's not what Mr. Dawkins was saying at all. Ben Stein's lie is now your lie.

        For your information:

        The theory most scientists currently favor for the origins of life is called “abiogenesis,” the gradual emergence of life on Earth from non-living matter. To understand why it is thought that life arose on Earth from non-living matter, one has to understand some basic biochemistry. This is where you “talking snake crowd” have such a problem. You have to actually understand some very basic science, you can’t just rely on what you were taught at Sunday school as an eight year-old.

        All life is comprised of complex arrangements of proteins, fats and carbohydrates, all orchestrated by DNA and/or RNA. DNA/RNA and proteins are by far the most important components of a living organism, carrying out virtually every function in a cell. Fats and carbohydrates are generally simpler molecules and play critical, but subordinate roles in cells.

        DNA and RNA are made of five nucleotides – adenine, thymine, cytosine, guanine and uracil. They act as the cell’s “mission control,” orchestrating the cell’s activities. Proteins are made of 20 amino acids. They are the workhorse of the cell – the nails, wood, steel beams and machinery that make the cell run. It is the order of amino acids in a protein that determine its shape and, therefore what it does. This order and shape of proteins is itself dictated by the DNA through RNA.

        So, in short, life is made up of complex arrangements of:

        The five nucleotides – adenine, thymine, cytosine, guanine and uracil – arranged into DNA and/or RNA
        The twenty amino acids – that form all proteins, including enzymes and the other 100,000 or so proteins in a complex organism’s body.
        Carbohydrates – literally “water-carbon,” which include sugars and starches. These are much simpler elements than proteins or DNA/RNA and act as an energy source.
        Fats – also called lipids, these are important in constructing cell membranes.

        The simplest cells are prokaryotic cells. They exist today principally as bacteria. Stromatolites and other fossils from all over the planet suggest that, for the first billion years of life on earth, all life was simple, prokaryotic life. These cells consisted of a fatty cell membrane, like a balloon skin, with DNA/RNA, proteins, fats and carbohydrates on the inside. They had no nucleus. Cells with nuclei, called eukaryotic cells (which make up virtually all multi-cellular organisms) are much larger and more complex that prokaryotic cells and likely resulted from the early combining of prokaryotic cells.

        So, can a simple prokaryotic cell come into existence without the intervention of God, Allah, Shiva, Vishnu, Yahweh or any other divine/magic being?

        Beginning in the 1950s, scientists started trying to mimic the conditions on the early Earth to see whether some kind of “life-fairy” was necessary to get things started. In the most famous experiment of this era, the Miller-Urey experiment of 1952, Stanley Miller demonstrated that heating and running an electric spark through an atmosphere of water vapor, ammonia, methane and hydrogen for a few weeks resulted in these very simple molecules self-assembling into all 20 of the amino acids upon which life on Earth is based. This is a startling result. All 20 building blocks of proteins, which comprise over 99% of the cell’s functional structures, self-assembling without a magic wand from God, Shiva, Vishnu, Allah etc!

        The experiment was groundbreaking because it suggested that, under the perfectly natural conditions of early Earth, the building blocks of life can and will self-assemble. Indeed, it now seems that major volcanic eruptions 4 billion years ago would have created an even more diverse atmosphere than Miller used, including carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrogen (N2), hydrogen sulfide (H2S), and sulfur dioxide (SO2). When these were added to the mix in subsequent experiments, they have resulted in the creation of all 5 nucleotides, all 20 amino acids and basic fatty membranes and various carbohydrates. That is to say, with no magic/divine intervention, all life’s building blocks WILL self-assemble.

        But nails, wood, wiring and bricks a house do not make. Even the simplest life requires these building blocks to be arranged in very, very complex ways. In various experiments with various conditions, scientists have been able to create a wide range of cell-like structures of increasing complexity on the road toward a simple self-replicating organism. These creations are called protobionts or coacervates and if you “you tube” or google these terms, you will see many examples.

        This is still a far cry from a cell, but the important thing is that the experiments uniformly demonstrate that organic molecules have a natural tendency to clump together in increasingly complex ways under early Earth-like conditions. They are not being pushed into doing something “against their will”.

        Where it gets really suggestive is that scientists have been able to isolate what they believe to be some of the most primitive genes of Earth, by comparing the DNA of two organisms whose last common ancestor lived soon after the formation of the Earth. For such genes to be common to both such organisms, they must be very, very old. When these ancient genes produce amino acids, they are rich in the amino acids most common in the Miller-Urey and similar experiments! This suggests that these experiments do indeed reflect early Earth conditions and that life itself did arise under such conditions.

        The other important factor is that these impressive results have been achieved in laboratories over small periods of time. Imagine the whole Earth as the “Petri dish” and hundreds of millions of years as the timescale. Simple life gradually emerging from such a “soup” does not seem at all incredible, certainly not incredible enough that we in the USA have to give up and call the remaining gap in knowledge “God,” while our Indian colleagues do the same and attribute it all to the Lord Shiva.

        Scientist are also approaching it from the other side too, gradually stripping away at prokaryotic cells to see how stripped down they have to become for life to “stop,” while others continue to build up from coacervates and protobionts. The gap is narrowing as our knowledge continues its inexorable march.

        The Christian sky-fairy is being pinched out! There’s not a lot of room left for him now. The pincers of science are closing in from both sides, squeezing out the phantom of religion and ignorance. Soon, the two sides of the pincer will meet and this unnecessary holdover will have to flutter off and find another dark corner to settle in, where the penetrating light of science and knowledge has not yet shone. Fortunately, the weak, forgiving mind of the believer will always be there for him, acting as an eternal refuge from enlightenment and advancement.

        September 6, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
      • nojinx

        This video is a great example of a few things:

        1. Dawkins thinks it is possible that another life form led to life on earth, even an intelligent life form like us.
        2. Creationists make the mistake that this equates to a god, as if humans were the equivalent of gods.
        3. Ben Stein is a shill.

        September 6, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
      • WOW

        @Dys: you can say anything you want but the video speaks for itself. He has no clue how life started and Noj: If in fact some other higher intelegence "other" than God... where did they come from?

        September 6, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
      • nojinx

        Just because he does not know the origins (duh, who does?) does not mean that something we can't even experience or find evidence of existence (i.e. gods) exists. By that logic you could argue My Little Ponies exist and created the universe.

        Where do these people come from? and when can we invade?

        September 6, 2012 at 5:14 pm |
      • ScottCA

        Completely out of context.

        The point of it is that the initial state would have to have been something simple. Dawkins was talking about the possibility of other life existing, and yes life could exist somewhere else, But that life would have to have evolved and not have been created by any god. A very advanced alien that may appear to be like a god, would still not be a god.

        Ben Stein should have known better than to draw such an evidently false conclusion from what Dawkins was talking about.

        Stein looks like a imbecile here.

        September 7, 2012 at 3:00 am |
      • ScottCA

        Completely out of context.

        The point of it is that the initial state would have to have been something simple. Dawkins was talking about the possibility of other life existing, and yes life could exist somewhere else, But that life would have to have evolved and not have been created by any god. A very advanced alien that may appear to be like a god, would still not be a god.

        Ben Stein should have known better than to draw such an evidently false conclusion from what Dawkins was talking about.

        Stein looks like a imbecile here..

        September 7, 2012 at 3:01 am |
      • Bible Clown©

        Grasping at straws, like the guy who says all he heard of Obama's speech was "I want" before he turned it off, so that's Obama's new slogan. You guys are intellectually dishonest, and again, I have to wonder why you think it glorifies your god when you lie this way in His defense?

        September 7, 2012 at 8:33 am |
    • bill.x

      I'm a democrat and I know he is wrong.

      September 6, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
      • WOW

        @Bill: watch out... they don't like politics up in here lol....

        September 6, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • Oakspar77777

      You are correct that Mr. Dawkins' not knowing how life started on this planet does not prove a god (or any supernatural force) put life on this planet. What he does concede is that science has no evidence that abiogenesis was the cause of life on this planet.

      He reveals his premise, which is that he believes (on faith), that there can be no supernatural agency in the universe.

      So, in his mind, life either originated here of natural causes (abiogenesis) or that it was seeded here from some other planet where life originated (abiogensis) by natural causes (meteor, aliens, etc).

      If there was compelling evidence for abiogenesis here on Earth, he would argue for that. In the abscence of that evidence, he would be happy to find evidence of life seeing – so long as that life orginated from abiogenesis (no matter how many planet hopping seedings it took to get to first life here).

      So, no evidence for abiogenesis here and certainly none from space (since we can barely scratch space at this point) – but a firm belief that abiogenesis can be the only answer. Why?

      Again, his premise is that there is no supernatural, so everything MUST have a natural cause. This is not rooted in science (empirical evidence), but a lack of evidence – you can no more prove that everything is natural anymore than you can prove something is not natural.

      His belief is that there is no God, so he supports that belief with logical constructs. When these constructs are based on the premise that there is no God, they obviously appear to support his position.

      It is like arguing that the word "talk" does not exist because the alphabet does not contain the letter "k." If you start with a _eyboard that lac_s the _ey for "_" then the word "tal_" obviously does not exist and cannot ma_e sense.

      If Dawkins did see the supernatural, say, his dog flying, he would simply ration it away (dog on a string) or find a way to make it natural (dogs have an antigravity molecule in their liver). Thus, it would appear as natural to him as a bumble bee flying, even if the truth was that it was little angels holding it up.

      Dawkins would even speculate that "extra dimensional" beings could exist – since as soon as that dimension was discovered and accessed it would simply broaden the definition of "natural" to include it.

      So, a super-technologically advanced alien with senses beyond the five we currently posses whose thoughts and movements are non-corporal (consisting of electromagnetic, gravetational, or other energies) seeds life onto an Earth-like planet in the Goldielocks Zone a few billion years ago and sits back (as if it could sit) for a few billion years since it feeds on the electromagnetic waves of higly developed lifeforms. It has trillions of these planets spread out (since they don't tend to cohabitate well) and it feeds off of these gardens of life for eons.

      That is something that Dawkins would say is "possible, but highly unlikely." It is, however, theism defined in Dawkins "everything is natural" premise. After all, according to abiogenesis, life itself is "possible, but highly unlikely."

      September 11, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
  98. Luther51

    The problem with Dawkins, as with all atheists, is that they possess only an extremely small fraction of knowledge about the universe. To imply that they know enough to categorically state that there is no God is not only arrogant; it's untrue.

    He can be as adamant as he wants. The simple fact is that he does not know what happens after death.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • bff

      Lets get one thing straight. When atheists don't know something, they tell you they don't know. We will tell you that there is as much evidence for a god as there is for the tooth fairy. In this world, that means we are 99.99999% sure that no supernatural being exists. And we have the lack of evidence to back that up.

      Now for arrogance. You religious folk make up a total fairy tale without any evidence and say that you believ this to be true. Are you sure you understand the definition of arrogance? Look in the mirror!

      September 6, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • Eric

      Luther51: can you explain some times in the history of mankind when it has been better, when confronted with something unknown, to say "we don't know but we're going to find out" instead of "we don't know so it must be magic?"

      September 6, 2012 at 5:11 pm |
    • Olaf Big

      Man, you are so right! The atheists, collectively speaking, possess a tiny fraction of knowledge about the Universe, but what they do possess is knowledge, meaning it can make things work, whereas what the creationists possess is a fancy belief with zero practical utility or predictive power.

      September 6, 2012 at 6:10 pm |
    • Tim

      I know of no atheists who have stated that there are no gods but lack a belief in gods. I've met many Christians who state that they know there is a god and that their Jesus is a god though. Do you own a dictionary or only bibles?

      September 6, 2012 at 7:15 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      They DO NOT categorically say there is no God...they deny there is evidence that there IS a god and they refuse to believe in anything for which there is no evidence, If you cannot distinguish the difference between those two, you are deficient in critical thinking. His view is called science...you should try some.

      September 6, 2012 at 8:44 pm |
    • max3333444555

      luther,

      acknowledging god is all about a lack of evidence...

      September 13, 2012 at 8:11 pm |
  99. Rex

    I believe the world will be a lot more peaceful place if we all had the same belief as this gentleman.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • WOW

      How is that? Explain yourself. What draws you to that conclusion?

      September 6, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
      • Dan, TX

        Well, we can agree it would be no worse off than now, with a reasonable probability that fewer deaths due to Jihad against infidels would occur, can't we?

        September 6, 2012 at 3:51 pm |
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