We have been discussing the issue of religion over at The Gurdjieff Con and we exposed the ugliness of the whole spectrum, with a reference to the New Atheists. This seems like an endorsement, but it is not: I fear the New Atheists are the only group dumb enough to surpass the phenomenon of religion for ugliness.
Who knows, the delusion is young, and the movement filling to the brim with fools, snobs, social darwinists alergic to altruism, and an emerging crypto-conservative strain that was absent in the real creators of this movement: the generation of Fuerbach. The movement could perhaps mutate toward something new and different. To be a snob is a strange menace to group sanity. Most religions try at least to be polite to outsiders, or the poor. But this movment is social darwnist in disguise and its pecking order, mainly academic scientism and its review by ‘smarts’, will soon become a gross parody of the old religions. The poor are losers and will be eliminated by Darwinian process. Give me a break. The world has seen a lot of religious abortions. But a movement of ‘smarty type’ snobs (mostly IQ snobs, but not entirely) is not exactly suited to expansion. Note that this movement is a really a downfield version of early socialist politics, with its equality comittments and secularist humanism. That movement wished to represent a future beyond religion, but realizing its goals of equality. The New Atheist movement isn’t going to bother. These are Nietzche fans at the Sophmore level, and the guile to disguise this is already the between the lines for these smirking troopers. This is not exaggeration. Try starting a conversation with a New Atheist. After the pedigree check and the God question the conversation is over, you don’t fit in.
The future of this movement is open-ended. But I think the problems are too numerous. It can’t even function as a cult. First, the movement gives a false expression to modernity. Forget the Reformation for a moment. This movement can’t even get science right. The attack on free will is baffling. How could any social movement make such a dumb claim, based on a narrow view of the scientific revolution. Modernity is not to be equated with this strange concept loan from students of physics, who spend their green years doing physics problem in Newtonian fundamentalism. There, to state the obvious, the concept of free will finds no place. The concept of free will is too much to handle after that training.
The list of anomalies is much longer, and it is unnerving to see how modernity is being cashiered by a pseudo-religious substitute for religion.
Let me say, however futile at this point: the focus on atheism is wrong. We have suffered enough from the god question. The last drop of blood profit to the devil will come neatly from a reversal from theism to atheism. Drop this obsession. Please drop it. But drop theism/atheism into a dialctical toilet and flush at once. Simply drop the term ‘god’, and do something else. Nonetheless, theists will easily stage a comeback here. So what is the point?