Atheism: the Way of Life
Sam Harris, the noted contemporary atheist says the following in his debate over God. The full text of the debate-in an article published in April 2007 issue of NewsWeek- can be accessed through this link:
1. “…..and it’s instructive to notice that we’re all atheists with respect to Zeus and the thousands of other dead gods whom now nobody worships.”
2. No society in human history has ever suffered because it has become too reasonable.
3. The thing that bothers me about faith-based altruism is that it is contaminated with religious ideas that have nothing to do with the relief of human suffering. So you have a Christian minister in Africa who’s doing really good work, helping those who are hungry, healing the sick. And yet, as part of his job description, he feels he needs to preach the divinity of Jesus in communities where literally millions of people have been killed because of interreligious conflict between Christians and Muslims. It seems to me that that added piece causes unnecessary suffering. I would much rather have someone over there who simply wanted to feed the hungry and heal the sick.
4. Pastor Warren said: A low probability? When there are 96 percent believers in the world? So is everybody else an idiot?
Sam replies:It is quite possible for most people to be wrong—as are most Americans who think that evolution didn’t occur.
Pastor Warren: That’s an arrogant statement.
5. Right now, we have to change the rules to talk about God and spiritual experience and ethics. And I’m denying that that is so. You can have your spirituality. You can go into a cave and practice meditation and transform yourself, and then we can talk about why that happened and how it could be replicated. We may even want, for perfectly rational reasons, to say we want a Sabbath in this country, a genuine Sabbath. Let’s realize that there’s a power in contemplating the mystery of the universe, and in reminding yourself how much you love the people closest to you, and how much more you could love the people you haven’t met yet. There is nothing you have to believe on insufficient evidence in order to talk about that possibility