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Mon Jan 28, 2013, 12:59 PM

Rowan Williams, Richard Dawkins to Debate on Role of Religion

http://www.christianpost.com/news/rowan-williams-richard-dawkins-to-debate-on-role-of-religion-88991/

By Anugrah Kumar , Christian Post Contributor
January 28, 2013|10:25 am


(Photo: AP Images / Akira Suemori)
In this file photo, Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams speaks during the General Synod of the Church of England at Church House in London, Feb. 9, 2010.

Rowan Williams, who stepped down as the Anglican leader last month, and Richard Dawkins, a leading secularist in the U.K., will discuss whether "religion has no place in the 21st Century" at a Cambridge Union Society debate on Thursday.

The upcoming debate is expected to be a highlight of the debating society's 200-year history, Ben Kentish, the Union's president, told BBC. "Our speakers are the most renowned commentators on this subject."

The Union the largest society at the University of Cambridge has a long and distinguished history of hosting leading state and international political and other figures in its chamber, from presidents to Prime Ministers and Oscar winners to Olympic legends.

"The prospect of seeing Professor Dawkins and the former Archbishop of Canterbury debate the subject is particularly exciting for our members" Kentish adds. "It has all the makings of an excellent debate."

Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/rowan-williams-richard-dawkins-to-debate-on-role-of-religion-88991/#gM1LQWU2zt67ZWPO.99

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Reply Rowan Williams, Richard Dawkins to Debate on Role of Religion (Original post)
cbayer Jan 2013 OP
hrmjustin Jan 2013 #1
cbayer Jan 2013 #4
hrmjustin Jan 2013 #5
bluestateguy Jan 2013 #2
cbayer Jan 2013 #6
longship Jan 2013 #3
cbayer Jan 2013 #7
longship Jan 2013 #9
tama Jan 2013 #12
okasha Jan 2013 #13
longship Jan 2013 #14
pinto Jan 2013 #8
longship Jan 2013 #10
pinto Jan 2013 #11

Response to cbayer (Original post)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 01:06 PM

1. I never liked Rowan at all.

He has been a coward IMO that has allowed the conservatives in the church to walk all over him. As many people know the Episcopal Church which is the American branch of the COE, is much more liberal and not afraid to say the hell with The Archbishop. When he was the Archbishop of Wales he was more liberal, but he turned out to be a coward in the end. Dawkins who I like and respect should walk all over him, and that is a shame.

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Response to hrmjustin (Reply #1)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 01:36 PM

4. This is not their first debate.

Unless one had a clear horse in the race, there seems to be general consensus that there was not a winner in their last debate.

Good article from the Guardian, if you are interested:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2012/feb/23/richard-dawkins-rowan-williams-bout

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Response to cbayer (Reply #4)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 01:38 PM

5. Thanks for the link.

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Response to cbayer (Original post)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 01:19 PM

2. I remember the Sharpton/Hitchens debate on the existence of God

The (white) fundamentalist wackos must have flipped out upon learning that Al Sharpton would represent their side of the argument.

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Response to bluestateguy (Reply #2)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 01:40 PM

6. There are also non-believers who reject many of Hitchens political stances, so

the flipping out maybe was done on both sides, lol.

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Response to cbayer (Original post)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 01:26 PM

3. I really like Dawkins.

I know people portray him as the classic angry atheist but I still like him. His God Delusion is a great read. If you want an angry atheist, try Christopher Hitchens' God is Not Great on for size. Surely, the latter is a polemic if there ever was one.

I am also an angry atheist, but I reserve that anger towards the only worthy target, religious intrusion into politics and government which surely must be considered a worthy target of such anger.

I have no complaint that people believe in god(s). But those pastors, who are allegedly educated in their trade, should know better. I suspect that people like Falwell and Robertson know exactly what they are doing, deceiving their flocks. (Sheep! Can any metaphor be as demeaning yet somehow truthful?)

Overt religiosity in politics disgusts me. I would hope that people who believe in god(s) would join me in that disgust. That's why I think atheists should reach out to theists. They are being played as chumps.

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Response to longship (Reply #3)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 01:41 PM

7. The topic of this debate leads me to believe that they might take up

the role of religion in politics.

Should be interesting.

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Response to cbayer (Reply #7)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 02:04 PM

9. I hope there's audio of the debate posted.

Look for it on commonsenseatheism.com which has over 600 debates online. One of my favorites is William Lane Craig being taken down by Ray Bradley on the topic of "Can a loving God send people to Hell?"



Of course, this is the classic theodicy argument, one to which theists have no rational answer. Craig struggles to put the onus of proof on Bradley -- a common apologetic technique. Bradley siezes the nettle (Craig's words) and cuts to the core of the Craig's argument.

I love this stuff.

Try out The Bible Geek sometime for mind twisting religion geekery. He is a former evangelical, now atheist, who has an encyclopedic knowledge of the Bible. Sadly, he's a staunch Republican, but I still listen to his multiple podcasts posted every week.

As always

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Response to longship (Reply #9)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 04:11 PM

12. The rational answer is easy

 

"God" is not authoritarian, but anarchist. Anarchist absolute love can't authoritatively stop or deny any experience but allows and is source of also suffering, and all that suffering can teach and create. Only if and when a sentient being is willing to accept and receive absolute unconditional love it is received and happens. Ignorance is also a choice of love, if all parts of "God" were all-knowing all the time, there would be no change and creation and evolution going on.

So, in such theology "God" is not an authority to put blame on, just source of love that makes it possible to experience what ever you want to experience, and all of that is your own choice. As is the ever present choice of stopping to suffer and experience and return to source.

You don't have to believe so, dunno if I do, but at least it's a rational answer to the theodicy problem.

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Response to longship (Reply #9)

Tue Jan 29, 2013, 12:21 AM

13. The debate topic is a conundrum

only if a theist believes in hell. Many don't.

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Response to okasha (Reply #13)

Tue Jan 29, 2013, 01:07 AM

14. But what Hell does one believe in?

There is no Hell in the Hebrew Bible. That conception only arrives after Jesus meek, yet strong. yet Jesus never spoke of it himself. Most prominently it comes with the so-called Paul (who never met Jesus and dismissed the apostles) and that LSD trip, The Revelation of (so-called) Saint John.

Yup! That all does it for me. If I don't believe what Jerry Falwell believes, I will suffer for an eternity.

Sounds like a great scam to me.

Here ya go:


Hell has morphed throughout the ages. It did not appear in the Hebrew Bible.

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Response to longship (Reply #3)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 01:51 PM

8. Yeah, I think many atheists, theists and others share a separation of church / state POV.

Falwell and Robertson are, in effect, essentially unelected politicians and CEOs of well funded right wing religious institutions. They fostered the religious right's broad involvement in US politics.

There's a broad coalition opportunity around church / state issues, imo. It's one I would welcome and support.

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Response to pinto (Reply #8)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 02:06 PM

10. Thanks. We are of equivalent mind sets. nt

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Response to longship (Reply #10)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 03:28 PM

11. Agree. Coalitions are agents of change.

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