Thursday, October 19, 2006

The root of all evil

Gus Van Horn is trying out Google ads, and in the process, one of his ads inadvertently linked to this pro-Islam site run by the "Cooperative Office for Dawah in Rawdah," whatever that may be. Needless to say, my curiosity got the best of me and I'm glad for it, because the website provides a crystal clear example of how the religionists exploit philosophic skepticism in defense of their creed. For example, there is this article on the "purpose of life."

How, then, do you discover the purpose of life? We basically have two options. The first is to let 'human reason' - the celebrated achievement of the Enlightenment - guide us. After all, the Enlightenment gave us modern science based on careful observation of the natural world. But have post-Enlightenment philosophers figured it out? Camus described life as "absurd"; Sartre spoke of "anguish, abandonment and despair." To these Existentialists, life has no meaning. Darwinians thought the meaning of life was to reproduce. Will Durant, capturing the predicament of postmodern man, wrote, "Faith and hope disappear; doubt and despair are the order of the day... it is not our homes and our treasuries that are empty, it is our 'hearts'." When it comes to meaning of life, even the wisest philosophers are just guessing. Will Durant, the most noted philosopher of the last century, and Dr. Hugh Moorhead, a philosophy professor at Northeastern Illinois University, both wrote separate books titled 'The Meaning of Life.' They wrote to the best-known philosophers, scientists, writers, politicians, and intellectuals of their time in the world, asking them, "What is the meaning of life?" Then they published their responses. Some offered their best guesses, some admitted that they just made up a purpose for life, and others were honest enough to say they were clueless. In fact, a number of famous intellectuals asked the authors to write back and tell them if the purpose of life was discovered!
So, according to this author, reason equals uncertainty and a world "anguish, abandonment and despair," even if it did give us our modern science.

What then of an alternative to reason's alleged blindness? The anonymous author maintains that:

When we read a book, we accept that an author exists. When we see a house, we accept that a builder exists. Both of these things were made with a purpose by those who made them. The design, order, and complexity of the universe as well as the world around us are evidence of the existence of a Supreme Intelligence, a Perfect Designer. All the heavenly bodies are controlled by precise laws of physics. Can there be laws without a lawmaker? . . .

This brings us to the second option: the alternative to speculation about the meaning and purpose of life is revelation. The easiest way to discover the purpose of an invention is to ask the inventor. To discover the purpose of your life, ask God. [emphasis added]
Notice that the author does not even say "ask Allah," for his God and the Christian God are one in the same. And notice how the author makes the classic Kantian argument—attempting to make room for faith by attacking reason (or more specifically, skepticism held out in the place of reason).

Articles such as this one underscore that it is the philosophic corruption in the West that most undermines us, and the pressing need for Ayn Rand's philosophy of Objectivism as an antidote. The author makes no reference to Islamic philosophy—his every argument came from the heads of Western minds. It is the West's faults that give our enemies power, and this essay underscores that the real fight for civilization is in our universities, where irrational ideas like the ones it presents continue to run all but unchecked.


Gus Van Horn said...

Excellent! Not only did this ad get me a few cents -- from Moslems no less -- towards a pint, it drew this outfit a well-deserved flaying.

On a serious note -- very nice posting! You have just shown that the Moslems are such a pathetic enemy that they not only depend on our not using our military properly in order to continue living; they even need Western ideas (albeit bad ones) to fight on the intellectual front!

And they get upset when we insult Islam? Nothing we can say can top simple reporting on their behavior for that purpose! Wow! You just can't make this stuff up!


Nicholas Provenzo said...

Gus wrote:

>they not only depend on our not using our military properly in order to continue living; they even need Western ideas (albeit bad ones) to fight on the intellectual front!

I know—pitiful. What I find disturbing though is that the author uses the same arguments that the Christians rely upon to justify faith in God and absurdities like “intelligent design.” Whereas most Americans will never accept Islam, they do accept Christianity, if only because it is more familiar. And who helps them—why it’s the skeptics. One lays down the foundation, and the other cashes in on it.

And that’s why I maintain that both the left and the right are engaged in a wholesale and deadly crusade against reason—politically, morally, and philosophically—and just how crucial it is that we communicate the alternative.

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Anonymous said...

I think you missed the point of the blog author gus. Do you bash Islam whenever you get the chance?

As to what the article on the Islamic website said, they have a point dont they?

Anonymous said...

forget all those words "reasoning", "kantian" and "skepticism", "philosophy" and "religion" ..... These are all man made .... just jargon, mostly abused and far from what they were ever made for in the first place. Just ask yourself one simple question. "Do I know the purpose of my life?" Honestly, in the still of the night, when everytihng else is quiet, can you answer that question, to your own heart, in a way that really can put your heart at rest. If you think that your heart is already at rest, then ask yourself if it really is.... if your answer is yes, then such articles were never meant for you in the first place.