Wednesday, March 12, 2014


Dawkins' atheism is as Anglican as Colin McGinn's is Catholic. His blind spots don't surprise me but I hope I wasn't the first person to make the point above.

The search for Truth is the search for originating authority, metaphysics before physics, theory before practice. Facts, events, and people are secondary, as tokens to types. Physics is seen as philosophically superior to geology because the world we can't see with our own eyes takes precedence over the world of appearance. This gives credence by analogy to an independent world of ideas. Even philosophers who argue otherwise are no more than pedants about words; for scientists, "words are not the matter."

Dawkins isn't happy being a scientist; he needs to be a philosopher and his philosophy is Anglican and Oxbridge. His fixation on genotype rather than phenotype comes from the need for Truth to be interior, hidden from the naked eye.

I've said it before: Truth is "just over that hill", "on the top of that mountain", "across the seas", "on distant planets". It's the curiosity of Plato's cave-dwellers.  The facts are some guys schlepping furniture.  Once we know the Truth it's not true anymore, it's just banality. What was once "The New World" now includes strip malls in New Jersey.

He liked the fragility of those moments suspended in time, those memories whose only function had been to leave behind nothing but memories. He wrote: "I've been around the world several times, and now only banality still interests me."

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