J Walking

J Walking

D’Souza and Hitchens… on God?

Last week Dinesh debated Christopher Hitchens. Here is a link to the full debate. Below is an excerpt:

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posted October 24, 2007 at 3:27 pm

Darn, David, you picked the two most obnoxious representatives of their particular viewpoint. Can hardly watch them.
Hitchens is beyond irritating, but then so is D’Souza.
Who would I listen to on either end of this argument? Well, that’s one to think about. Anybody have an idea of two intellectuals who can speak to this subject?

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posted October 24, 2007 at 5:11 pm

thick places?

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posted October 24, 2007 at 5:55 pm

LOL Doug

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Larry Parker

posted October 24, 2007 at 9:12 pm

Actually, I thought it was an interesting debate (albeit D’Souza being only slightly less insufferable than Hitchens).
But what if you have a foot in both camps?
All of the logic of a (cruel) world is on Hitchens’ side, none on D’Souza’s. Yet D’Souza is right, despite Hitchens’ protests, that on the whole (Salem Witch Trials, Crusades and Spanish Inquisitions aside), religion has helped elevate people morally. (For all the good it’s done them, alas, Hitchens would ruefully and mostly truthfully note.)
Yet both ultimately make me stumble. Hitchens is so vitriolic, so angry, so hateful, that his manner invokes the bald slam on atheism that “Life sucks and then you die.” It’s literally no way to live, with such bitterness in one’s heart.
On the other hand, when D’Souza tries to justify Christian cosmology without the use of Scripture … well, he’s not asking us to make a leap of faith. He’s asking us to jump like Evel Knievel over the Grand Canyon.

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Larry Parker

posted October 29, 2007 at 6:01 pm

Again, any particular reason you recycled this (worthy though it is)?

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posted October 31, 2007 at 1:50 am

I enjoyed the debate, although I was repulsed by Hitchen’s animus toward Mother Theresa. That one thing validated D’Sousa more than anything else, I thought. I’m reading D’Sousa’s book: It’s mostly a theistic philosophical foray.
Hitchens stated that he recognized and believed in the numenous and transcendent, which raises some interesting ramifications. In essence, he believes in people making up their own little religion, which is unquestionably a projection of an idealized self. Such a projection has little hope of approaching truth. But, he’s violently opposed to any organized religion that proposes moral rules. He would be more philosophically consistent if he rejected the numenous. He’s casting judgement on other people’s ideas of the numenous. I think he must be a pantheist.

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