Richard Dawkins Interviews and Comments

As if on queue, last night I happened accross a copy of The God Delusion by evolutionary biologist and outspoken critic of religion Richard Dawkins. Having first heard of him during some conversations at BetterHumans, and having first heard him speak at the TED conference, I have since then began to grow curious regarding this man’s work. Regardless of whether I agree with him or not is inconsequential to the fact that his arguments are exceedingly well thought out, and should be considered by any serious thinkers.

In any case what follows is a BBC profile of Dr. Dawkins and an interview by Stephen Colbert. Enjoy.

BBC Profile: Richard Dawkins, parts 1, 2, and 3

Stephen Colbert Interviews Dawkins

6 thoughts on “Richard Dawkins Interviews and Comments

  1. I’ll be honest. I only watched the steven colbert one, so i have a few questions.

    Is Dawkins trying to establish that there is definitly no god, or that there just might not be a god and that everything we think is gods work is just the workings of something else.

    Also…if he believes there is no god, does he give proof there is no god? Can he? Isnt it the same lack fo proof of the existance of god that makes him question gods existance?

    And finally….What do you think Richard Dawkins would give his life for? Maybe to prove his point? šŸ˜›

  2. You may want to watch the others, given the kinds of questions you have. There is also a fair amount of YouTube video available where he reads large passages of The God Delusion. Examples:

    Regarding God, Dawkins is trying to establish that the existence of God is very very unlikely (and yes, he is an atheist). Furthermore, he attempts to establish that unquestioned faith is a very dangerious thing, and should be refuted. He even goes so far as saying that indoctrinating kids into a certain faith is a form of child abuse, since it is convincing kids against their wills to believe something which in all likelyhood isn’t true.

    To paraphrase him regarding proof of there being no God, the inability to disprove something does not in anyway make it so. You can’t disprove God anymore than you can disprove that the Flying Spaghetti Monster created the universe, or that Thor or Zeus exist. (As he puts it, most people are atheist about Thor and Zeus. Dawkins just takes it one god further.) Arguing that somehting exists because it cannot be disproven is stupid, since you can’t really disprove anything.

    As for what he would give his life for, I’m guessing his kids are one, but you’d have to ask him, since in the end it is his life he’s giving up.

  3. “I have since then began to grow curious regarding this manā€™s work. Regardless of whether I agree with him or not is inconsequential to the fact that his arguments are exceedingly well thought out, and should be considered by any serious thinkers.”

    Your writing is pretty good but “I have since then began” is not good writing. It is just pretentious writing. Do agree? or do you think it is appropriate to write like that?

    But more importantly, the fact of whether you agree with Dawkins or not is very consequential; otherwise his arguments were not well thought out. I don’t understand how you could miss this difference.?. Maybe you meant to say that his logic made sense and that his premises would in fact come to conclusion he states. But to say it is well though out and then dismiss whether you agree or not would say very little of your opinion. I hope I don’t sound like a jerk I am just trying to figure this out.

  4. Regarding my choice of words, rare as they are, there are times in which I choose to write as I think, and don’t do much editing past that, if any. This was one of those times.

    As for my thoughts on Dawkins and his works, I didn’t want to express an opinion one way or the other for a couple of reasons. First, at the time of this writing I simply didn’t have a solid opinion. While he seemed very interesting and his arguments, what little I knew of them, made sense, I had just heard of the man. However–and this is the second point–being unfamiliar with his work, to either advocate it or oppose it would have been completely ignorant on my part. To amplify this ignorance by expressing an uninformed opinion about the topic in a public forum, where others would perhaps be encountering this information for the first time, would have also been extremely irresponsible. The fact is that his arguments are, by any standard, well though out. Therefore, only the premises and assumptions he uses can be really argued for or against. It is there that my opinions begin, after the premises have been defined. Because I was not familiar enough to BOTH defend AND oppose his viewpoint, I didn’t feel that my opinion would be valid. Finally, the point of the post was to showcase the guy and his ideas, not to showcase my opinions. Therefore, my opinion on the matter, even had I more time to digest the information, was indeed inconsequential.

    (If you care to know, my gut reaction then was to agree with the guy wholeheartedly. However, after much more reading and deeper thought, I find that I vehemently disagree with his materialistic view of the world. There he and I have a fundamental difference. However, I agree with him in his arguments that humans are generally good, and don’t necessarily need the fear of all almighty super-being threatening punishment in order to stay in line. I also agree that fundamentalist faith does far more damage than good.)

    Don’t worry about sounding like a jerk. Did you? Yeah, a bit. But I understand and truly do appreciate where you’re coming from. Besides, comments like these tend to make my writing better. I’m sure we can both agree that this is a good thing. Take care, Moonright.

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