On the senses

What do you think of Nietzsche’s argument that the senses do not lie, but rather what we make of their testimony, that alone introduces lies. In short, reason( judgement) is the cause of our falsification of the testimony of the senses.

He agrees with Heraclitus that the “apparent” world is the only one: the “true” world is merely added by a lie.

is it rational to believe in god

Well, who knew scientists were polled and their verdict was it is rational to believe in god. So Brian and Jeff, find the nearest church near you and ask to join.

Will Jones opening salvo is a fallacious argument. The bible says there is a god and the bible says it is rational to believe in its god. You can see where there is going. Downhill all the way! Jones calls as his witnesses Plato and Aristotle but unfortunately this doesn’t help his cause. To Aristotle, the number of gods could be 47 or 55. This is not all for Diagoras and Theodoras flatly denied that there were any gods at all and many other ancient philosophers did not agree on the nature of god(s).

Had the being of god been obvious, there would have been no need for apologetics. Jones tells us

However, Bible-believing Christians have generally stuck by the classical and biblical view that the existence of God is something for which sufficient reasons are supplied by the light of nature.

which is interesting because humanity have managed to explain things that were believed to belong to the domain of the gods but Christians have stuck to their old conceptions as if time has remained static and we have collectively as a race done nothing towards knowledge acquisition.

Jones disagrees with Spufford whom he quotes as having written

No, I can’t prove it,’ Spufford says. ‘I don’t know if there’s a God (and neither do you, and neither does Professor Dawkins . . . it isn’t the kind of thing you can know. It isn’t a knowable item).’

and calls the above anti-rational idea which tells me he would disagree also with Pascal who in his Pensees argues reason can help you make the ascent to the being of a god. You must forget reason. And have faith. While we are here, I don’t know of anyone who became a believer because he heard Francis Collins is a believer. In fact, this post by Ark might be helpful on this point.

Seeing that his arguments lack substance, Jones then calls as a witness to his god the fine tuning argument. Any argument that depends on an inference of design a posteriori was dealt a blow by Hume many years ago. Maybe if Jones had read Hume, he might not have called this witness to the stand. This is the only fine tuning argument I am willing to get behind.

In a world with an omni god as the Christians claim their god is, free will is not possible. While Jones want us to believe that without his god, we can’t have morals, he forgets that eons passed before some desert goat herders dreamed their religion and some European missionaries decided to spread this nonsense around the world.

While I agree with the first part of this statement

Ultimately, Francis Spufford is wrong about human beings: we are not entirely controlled by our feelings, and reason is not and ought not to be, as David Hume had it, ‘the slave of the passions’. Whatever else we are, we are rational animals, possessed of a reasoning mind, capable of recognizing and responding to truth when we see it, including the truth of God.

it shouldn’t be lost on us that Jones intended to demonstrate that belief in god is rational. This he has failed to do.

This

Seasoned apologist John Lennox spoke at Coventry Cathedral recently on the evidence for a Creator, and a colleague of mine went along with an atheist friend. Afterwards the friend turned to him and said: ‘I now believe in a Creator God.’ That is the power of truth.

is funny. Who would believe such drivel really?

New developments in Turkey

I think following the biblical precept of marry your rape victim and avoid punishment, Turkey’s parliament has resolved to go all stone age on her female population and will soon be introducing legislation to allow a rapist marry their victim and avoid punishment.

Let’s hope that before the end of January, some sense will have entered into their heads and this bill will die before it sees light of day.

Nairobi city county is being run by idiots

And I really think something should be done to arrest this situation before the city goes to the dogs or pigs whichever is your preference.

Twice officers from the city’s parking division have clamped my car; one time the idiot clamped it while I was inside and today some idiot clamped it just at the moment I was paying. This meant wasting the better part of my afternoon looking for the idiot with the key.

I understand that the people of Nairobi elected a not so bright individual as governor but one would expect technocrats to do better or be better.

__________________________

In other news, reading about the senate’s rules in the impeachment trial of Trumpsky where Mitch has refused no witnesses shall be called reminds me of how Moi, our ex president, would scuttle a commission of enquiry. Maybe Americans are coming face to face with the problem associated with poor choice of leaders & we will hear less of their lectures.

In thus spoke Zarathustra

Nietzsche is very playful. I think he must have laughed as he wrote the very playful sections of that book.

Take for instance the part where Zarathustra says laughter killed the gods when one of them said there’s no gods but god.

In part four in conversation with the retired pope, Zarathustra says pity for man killed god, that is, god could not stand the man on the cross and died out of pity. In the same place he says

He was a concealed god, addicted to secrecy. Verily, even a son he got himself in a sneaky way. At the door of his faith stands adultery.

Elsewhere he writes about god this

When he was young, this god out of the Orient, he was harsh and vengeful and he built himself a hell to amuse his favorites. Eventually, however, he became old and soft and mellow and pitying, more like a grandfather, but most like a shaky grandmother. Then he sat in his nook by the hearth, wilted, grieving over his weak legs, weary of the world, and one day he choked on his all too great pity.

And finally on love( especially the way Christians and religious people don’t tire to tell us god is love, Zarathustra says

Whoever praises him as a god of love does not have a high enough opinion of love itself. Did this god not want to be a judge too? But the lover loves beyond reward and retribution.

Have yourselves a humorous day, won’t you!

A word of advice to believers

but to Christian apologists especially. Don’t be like this fellow.

How many people are represented by Richard Dawkins? Or what would one make of this

Many atheists (e.g., Richard Dawkins) spend much of their time railing against the Creator they believe doesn’t exist, and they hold their cause with great devotion and faith.

Against the 7 dimensions of religion, I will say a few things.

On Narrative

It should be noted there were atheists before Darwin. Simon should read the work of Jean Messlier which should cure his ignorance. Messlier’s Last Will and Testament which is a polemic against religion appeared 100 years before Darwin put pen to paper to write the Origin of species.

Experiential, Social, and Ritual

That some atheists meet on a regular basis on a Sunday no less doesn’t make it a religion. Community is deeply human. To want to be in community with like minded fellows does not make the gathering any less human.

Doctrine

I am yet to meet a Santa Claus believer who has threatened my neighbour with hell. Religious people are everywhere selling their religions. To counteract their claims is not religious. It is the duty of all intelligent men and women.

Ethical

There is nothing stopping a moral relativist from making an ethical claim. Besides, among atheists there is to be found a broad spectrum of belief; from moral relativists, realists, objectivists etc. Atheists don’t exist as one homogeneous group with identical beliefs.

This claim by Stephen

This is not to say that you do not need to profess belief in God to argue morality, but you do need God to have absolute morality.

is quite the stretch.

Material

That NDT said “Accepting our kinship with all life on earth is not only solid science, in my view, it’s also a soaring spiritual experience” doesn’t mean all atheists say the same thing. There is a fallacy here.

His final claim is so ridiculous it doesn’t warrant a response.

There is a better response to the above trope here.

Peculiar Kenyan traits

Now if you read the news or the interwebs, you have likely seen that we are a nation of many peculiarities. I will not name any others, that I live for you to find out. One that is peculiar is our greeting habits. You could be sitting at a place thinking about who you should rob next when out of nowhere someone stretches their hands in your face to greet you as they sit next to you. No. It is not that I don’t like to be greeted, that’s not it. I just don’t like strangers greeting me especially when that is the end of the engagement.

In other news why do the programmers at WordPress think we appreciate some of the changed they make to the blogging site? Could they try public participation by sending questionnaires for us to respond to?

Have a peculiar Sunday all of you.

on death

Lately I have found myself reflecting on death, mine especially though sometimes that of those dearest and closest to me do come up and I find I am not ready to die yet and I don’t want these people to die, at least not in the near future.

In the play Mahabhrata, Vyassa in response to the question which is the greatest folly responds “each day a person dies and we continue to live as if we are immortal” and maybe we couldn’t live otherwise. We would be held back by fear and would not do much, so what is a man to do.

Death does visit us all the time. We are distraught when a parent buries a child, more distraught especially when the child had potentially many years ahead of them to be whatever they could be. No one wants to bury their parents before they are really old.

Death, what are you and how do we appease you!

in the interest of peace

I am a pacifist. The threat or even the possibility of war worries me on end and I will be the first to concede that war has allowed some people who would have been unknown be recognized as heroes. And in America, it does seem joining the military used to be or may still is a sure way of upward mobility.

I am naive also. I know the only way peace would be possible and here I talk world peace, is to have all sides put down their weapons. We know this is not going to happen because humans are not rational actors as we would like to think.

What option is left for peace? I think only an uneasy peace is possible. There will always be threat of war. Nations will continue to build up their armies at the expense of other social services.

Or maybe, nations will fight and those who will be left will agree to a peace agreement till the next war breaks out.