Russell and Duenes

Goo-to-You Means There Is No “You”

with one comment

I simply cannot demonstrate enough times the philosophical bankruptcy of Richard Dawkins and his ilk on the issue of “goo-to-you” evolution. Too many people’s faith is disrupted or destroyed by Dawkins’ deceptions, and thus they need to be continually identified and refuted. This Alvin Plantinga – philosophy professor at Notre Dame – does superbly in his review of Dawkins’ The God Delusion. Here’s a taste, but I urge you to read the whole thing.

Like most naturalists, Dawkins is a materialist about human beings: human persons are material objects; they are not immaterial selves or souls or substances joined to a body, and they don’t contain any immaterial substance as a part. From this point of view, our beliefs would be dependent on neurophysiology, and (no doubt) a belief would just be a neurological structure of some complex kind. Now the neurophysiology on which our beliefs depend will doubtless be adaptive; but why think for a moment that the beliefs dependent on or caused by that neurophysiology will be mostly true? Why think our cognitive faculties are reliable?

Plantinga concludes,

The real problem here, obviously, is Dawkins’ naturalism, his belief that there is no such person as God or anyone like God. That is because naturalism implies that evolution is unguided. So a broader conclusion is that one can’t rationally accept both naturalism and evolution; naturalism, therefore, is in conflict with a premier doctrine of contemporary science. People like Dawkins hold that there is a conflict between science and religion because they think there is a conflict between evolution and theism; the truth of the matter, however, is that the conflict is between science and naturalism, not between science and belief in God.

As G.K. Chesterton noted, “There is a thought that stops thought.” Atheistic materialism is just such a thought. Indeed, if there is no God, there can be no thought. Thinking necessarily entails a mind, and a mind is a nonphysical entity, which is not possible in a purely material universe. The consistent atheist cannot presuppose anything in the universe except physical matter, and thus all things must transpire according to chemical and physical cause and effect. There’s no room for rationality in such a reductionist system. Physicalism is therefore finally self-defeating.



Written by Michael Duenes

October 26, 2010 at 6:23 am

Posted in Duenes, Philosophy, Science

One Response

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  1. Plantinga is a gift to this generation. My favourite thing that I’ve learned from him is that believing in God is completely rational even if there is not an iota of evidence for His existence. (More here and in the podcast offered here.)


    October 27, 2010 at 4:29 pm

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