Friday, January 19, 2007

Paging Sam Harris and Richard Dawkins

Granted, this essay comes from the UK (wow, that really is a theme tonight), but I thought the content of at least this excerpt was provocative. The commenters on the site where I found it -- Althouse -- were pretty uniformly snarky about the whole thing, but I figured I'd throw it out there:
Many of the propositions that fundamentalists are keen to sell the public are oft-repeated corner-stones of the media atheist's philosophy of religion.

Both partners in this unholy alliance agree that fundamentalist religion is the real thing and that more reflective and socially progressive versions of faith are pale imitations, counterfeits even. This endorsement is of enormous help to fundamentalists. What they are really threatened by is not aggressive atheism - indeed that helps secure a sense of persecution that is essential to group solidarity - but the sort of robustly self-critical faith that knows the Bible and the church's traditions, and can challenge bad religion on its own terms. Fundamentalists hate what they see as the enemy within. And by refusing to acknowledge any variegation in Christian thought, media atheists play right into their hands.
(Via Althouse)



Blogger Lisa said...

Hm, very interesting. The snark in the comments reminds me of an atheist friend who grew up around small-town fundamentalism and (rightfully, I think) turned his back on all that, and is now freaked out by the idea of liberal Christianity. I don't know enough church history to determine whether the commenters know what they're talking about, but it's interesting how much of a nerve Giles Fraser has struck.

2:01 PM  

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