Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Survival of the Witless

Talk to a typical Materialist-Atheist today (here's a picture of one below) ...

... and the dialogue will go like this ...

SANE MAN:  If there is nothing but matter, then what do you make of beauty, of love?

MATERIALIST-ATHEIST:  Beauty is subjective.

SM:  Then why discuss art?  Why critique anything if there's no objective truth or standard of beauty by which to measure and assess the thing we discuss?  Why discuss anything?  If everything is simply our own opinion, then why talk to anybody?  Isn't the whole purpose of discussion an attempt to uncover what is objective in the midst of our subjective notions?

MA:  (burps)

SM:  ... and what about love?  How do you explain love, the greatest spiritual gift, if everything is material?

MA:  Love comes from evolution.  It's our biology.  It's our gonads.

SM:  There's a word for what you're describing, but it ain't love. 

MA:  Then love is a benign illusion that helps us deal with the meaninglessness of life; a sense of purpose itself is a product of evolution and motivates the individual and the species.  We need our illusions in order to survive, though I don't personally need illusions, since I'm superior to you.  "Love" like "God" is just a giant spaghetti monster that we believe in; those inferior humans among us apparently need to believe in things other than matter or else they'd never get out of bed in the morning (which, most days, I myself have trouble doing).

SM:  So "love" is an illusion that aids our biological survival.

MA:  Exactly.

SM:  And Darwinists believe that the fittest survive, and that survival is the great good.

MA:  That's right.  Whatever gets you through the night, or through your life - whatever helps you propagate your species and not kill yourself (though I personally think suicide is noble).

SM:  But if there's nothing but matter, as you insist, then why is survival important?

MA:  ... huh?

SM:  What possible advantage does a frog have over a rock?  They're both random bits of matter.

MA:  A frog lives and attempts to survive and -

SM:  But why?  Why would "survival" be any less of an illusion than "love" or "beauty"?  If the only point of love or beauty is to get us off our butts so that we and our species continue to "survive", then "survival" is the ultimate good.  But why?  Why, if that's all there is, is "survival" important?  Once I die, by your theory, I'm still matter, after all.  I'll always be matter or energy.  That's all there is to be.  What possible benefit is it to survive, to live?

MA:  (looks despondent)  I often wonder that myself.

SM:  That's because your churches are filled with ugly stained glass, gay guitar music and insipid homilies.  You really don't know anything about love or beauty.  They do not exist to serve life, but to a certain extent, life exists to serve them.  Have another beer.

MA:  (suddenly emphatic)  You religionists deserve to die!

SM:  For me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.  Some more chips?


To be fair, I've had conversations with atheists who are much smarter and more serious than this - including one just the other night. 

And I was an atheist myself for many years, so I still hold a warm place in my heart for my confused brethren-in-the-no-faith.  The best of them are searching for truth; the worst of them are priests of the Culture of Death.


Benjamin. said...

I almost commented on the blog of a materialist atheist yesterday. He was arguing in favor of the "healthy religion" stance. You know, people saying they believe in God, but not really letting it influence them seriously. He called it "rational." What in the world is rational about pretending to believe in something on occasion, I don't know.

I didn't end up arguing with him as I knew it would probably end up with me being "offensive" and "outrageous" and him unable to articulate what morality is to him, since he appeared to be arguing from a "moral" standpoint.

Benjamin. said...

I suppose we can hope that the reason they hold so strongly still to a concept of morality is because they are headed towards God, but I don't know.

Michael Grin said...

There is some sort of mystery for my of why so different atheists, even living in different countries and cultures have very similar viewpoints and opinions. Those which you describe here is very similar to what I've heard from people here in Russia, though our atheism is very rooted in what was taught in USSR schools and University. Oh, and we had an interesting report recently, it's in Russian, but it shown that scince the scientific revolution a huge part of scientists were deeply religious people. If anyone is interested, here's the link: http://m1kle.ru/library_scientists_religious_worldview.php.


Benjamin. said...

Michael, from the research I've done it appears that atheism largely came to the U.S. from the Soviet Union. That is where it became very popular and then it spread over here.