Michael Nugent's Irish Times Article

Commentary on and links to religion or atheism in the media
Beebub
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Re: Michael Nugent's Irish Times Article

Post by Beebub » Fri Nov 04, 2011 11:29 am

Another response today. I wonder did I touch a nerve??
Sir, – Richard Morton (October 27th) continues to proclaim the non-existence of God, citing the brilliant scientists who, leaning on their intellectual gifts and undoubted qualifications have concluded there is no such being responsible for this marvellous universe and all it contains.

I believe they are in a no-win contest. They are opposed by the millions of people who down through the centuries concluded that there must be a good and caring super being who organised the four seasons of the year, every year, through which they were provided with food. They could not explain the mechanics of this exercise. Of course all these millions who believed in a super being were ordinary, poor, uneducated fellows with no benefit of university degrees, but they had the inherited gift of “common sense”, a qualification which seems sadly missing in many geniuses of this world.

Incidentally the much derided Bible stories of creation were composed and written down to be memorised easily by the uneducated millions, stories written in a poetic and metaphorical style not to be taken literally but conveying the basic message that an all-powerful, eternal and caring God is the origin of all creation. – Yours, etc,

Fr CON McGILLICUDDY,

Sybil Hill Road,

Raheny,

Dublin 5.
http://www.irishtimes.com/letters/index ... 4307039487

It’s very aggressive, and from a priest! Who says we’re in a ‘contest’ and I wasn’t aware that believers ‘oppose’ atheists. What have we done to deserve being opposed? I don’t oppose believers. I just don’t agree with them. My opposition is to their religion being forced down my throat; that’s completely different to opposing their beliefs. And on what grounds do believers oppose atheists? In no aspect of life is atheism forced on anybody. I also love the last line. Bible stories are ‘not to be taken literally’? Since when? That’s a very recent phenomenon and only came about because science has proved whole chunks of the bible to be nonsense. So instead of accepting that the Bible was written at a time when we didn’t understand how the world works as well as we do now, they change tack by saying it’s ‘metaphorical’. This only acts as a back up to Michael’s line:
Every generation we patiently move more explanations from ‘a god did it’ to we ‘now know how it happens naturally’. And we never move explanations in the other direction.
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Re: Michael Nugent's Irish Times Article

Post by funkyderek » Fri Nov 04, 2011 12:02 pm

Yeah, you can't explain seasons, therefore God.
If there was no god we'd just have one season where the weather was always nice and food grew all the time. But we don't so there must be a god. Possibly the worst argument I've ever heard on any subject.
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead

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Beebub
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Re: Michael Nugent's Irish Times Article

Post by Beebub » Fri Nov 04, 2011 12:14 pm

I've written a reply. I'll be curious to see if they print.
aiseiri47
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Re: Michael Nugent's Irish Times Article

Post by aiseiri47 » Fri Nov 04, 2011 12:32 pm

I read that letter just before visiting the forums, I had to take a deep breath and navigate away from the page.

I just love that he's using centuries of ignorance as proof of God. But of course, he's employing typical Western ego-centricism, because the description of a good, caring God that he provides only really exist in Christianity. Pretty much every other god, including the various interpretations of the God of Abraham, is either malevolent or selfish and capricious. So apparently it's only in the last couple millenia, in very specific geographical areas that people have developed this inherent "common sense". And strangely, this common sense seems to have spread with the imperialistic endeavours of various European empires. The majority of the billions of people who live and have lived on this planet, educated or not, have not picked up on the apparently obvious signs of this loving and caring god at all.

Ordinarily, I hate to just insult people rather than merely disagree with them, but this man is very simply an idiot.
nozzferrahhtoo
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Re: Michael Nugent's Irish Times Article

Post by nozzferrahhtoo » Mon Nov 07, 2011 9:22 am

DavidShedden wrote:The evidence I would use to support this is the four or five independent sources that testify to it within the New Testament... Mark's gospel, Luke's gospel and Acts, Paul's letters, John's writings, Peter's letters. But we already know that you simply do not accept the New Testament at all as a historical source for historical facts.
Of course not. If there is no reason to do "X" then why even point out that we are not doing "X". There is no reason on offer to use it as a historical source more or less than anything else written at the time. Nor... I notice... have you provided one. Bear in mind that a lot of fiction is set against a background of real word events and people. Just because the bible mentioned a few landmarks and people who were real, does not magically make everything in the book true. Similarly just because the places, people, events and history in the Bourne Identity books are all real... this does not mean there really is a super solider called Jason Bourne.

Also authors of fiction often write from the perspective of many different "speakers" within the story. In fact a book I just finished was well written in this regard as it told the story of a the same series of events over 48 hours from the perspective of no less than six of the main characters in the book.

The fact that the author wrote as if he was six people however does not a) mean he was six people or b) suddenly make the events within the book true.
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Re: Michael Nugent's Irish Times Article

Post by Feardorcha » Tue Nov 08, 2011 10:26 pm

Excuse the intrusion but was it Faulkner's 'As I Lay Dying'?
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