History, Evolution, and The Darwin Debate

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Schopenhauer and atheism

March 6th, 2015 · No Comments

There is something bizarre about the new atheism. The genre is quite entrenched in world history, religion, and modernity.
But the new atheists present a puzzling and weak version of the genre, hostile even to ‘atheists’ of different stripes.
Consider Schopenhauer, an atheist of sorts, but with a robust view of the ‘formerly thought spiritual’ in his stance toward the phenomenal and its larger thing-in-itself.
He was nonetheless a careful student of Luther and the Reformation, and Thomas Aquinas. Ironically he is also one of the sources for the new atheism, but without its narrowness.

One part of the problem is the abuse of darwinism to defeat the design argument. But it there is one thing that will make the new atheist movement fail it is here: the whole game will backfire as people realize that natural selection is a suspicious new form of semi-religious dogma. As it fails the mistrust of science will prolong religious adherence.

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