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Ironically enough this was at a "Rally for Reason" event. Because, of course, the best way to have a reasonable discussion is to resort to insults and mockery.

Washington D.C., Mar 27, 2012 / (CNA).- At the March 24 “Reason Rally” in Washington, D.C., an estimated 20,000 atheists and agnostics heard author and activist Richard Dawkins encourage mockery of Catholic beliefs and those of other religions.

“Don't fall for the convention that we're all 'too polite' to talk about religion,” Dawkins said, before urging rally attendees to ridicule Catholics' faith in the Eucharist.

“Religion makes specific claims about the universe which need to be substantiated, and need to be challenged – and if necessary, need to be ridiculed with contempt,” he told the cheering crowd on the National Mall.

“For example, if they say they're Catholic: Do you really believe, that when a priest blesses a wafer, it turns into the body of Christ? Are you seriously telling me you believe that? Are you seriously saying that wine turns into blood?”

If the answer is yes, Dawkins suggested atheists should show contempt for believers instead of ignoring the issue or feigning respect.

“Mock them,” he told the crowd. “Ridicule them! In public!”

The former Oxford professor and author of “The God Delusion” was among the headliners of Saturday's rally, which also featured comedian Eddie Izzard, punk rock group Bad Religion, and magician James Randi.

Dawkins called for atheists to identify themselves in public, for the sake of a more openly secular society.

He also claimed that many self-identified Christians are only nominal adherents of their religion, and should be given a chance to disavow beliefs that they may not hold.

“When you meet somebody who claims to be religious, ask them what they really believe,” Dawkins suggested.

“If you meet somebody who says he's Catholic, for example, say: 'What do you mean? Do you just mean you were baptized Catholic, because I'm not impressed by that.'”

But those who hold to the doctrines of their faith should be openly ridiculed, Dawkins said.

“I don't despise religious people; I despise what they stand for,” he explained.

Elsewhere in his remarks, the former professor praised the “truth” and “beauty” of Darwinian evolution, and the ability of the “incredible process” to produce life with the “illusion of design.”

“How is it conceivable,” he wondered, “that the laws of physics should conspire together – without guidance, without direction, without any intelligence – to bring us into the world?”

It was “almost too good to be true,” he rhapsodized, that this “mechanical, automatic, unplanned, unconscious process” should produce human intelligence.

“That's not just true, it's beautiful,” he declared to cheers from the crowd of agnostics and atheists.

“It's beautiful because it's true,” said Dawkins. “And it's almost too good to be true.”


http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/d...son-rally/
Sounds good to me.  Catholics need to be challenged.  Frankly, if you ask the average Catholic if he believes a wafer can be turned into the body of Christ, he'll scoff just like Dawkins does.  Another opportunity to separate the wheat from the chaff.  Clergy needs to reinforce these teachings.  Glad the atheists are drawing a line in the sand.  Maybe we'll start to see a difference between them and Catholics.
Well, this is already taking place. Just look at how the media has been portraying Catholics in the wake of the HSS mandate. Anyway, as many have pointed out, Dawkins and the other new atheists aren't really the most intellectually serious defenders of atheism, even their understanding of evolution is questionable, but I think the worry here is the influence this sort of thing will have on young people. A lot kids today are big fans of Dawkins and the others, which can result in young Christians facing a good deal of peer pressure when it comes to religion. Just mention religion in front of college-aged kids and see how worked up many of them get. Now, you might just say that anyone who would leave Christianity because of this wasn't a real Christian in the first place, but you do have to have some sympathy for the many people who have never really been educated about their faith, and who now have to deal with a culture that is extremely hostile to any religious belief at all.

(03-28-2012, 02:07 AM)Aragon Wrote: [ -> ]“If you meet somebody who says he's Catholic, for example, say: 'What do you mean? Do you just mean you were baptized Catholic, because I'm not impressed by that.'”

Also, who on earth cares about what impresses Richard Dawkins? The fact that Dawkins thinks he can decide what qualifies as true religious belief, saying that a person who can't name the Gospels isn't a real Christian for instance, is just mind blowing.
Thomas Feser called Dawkins the "village atheist".
(03-28-2012, 03:08 AM)Crusading Philologist Wrote: [ -> ]Well, this is already taking place. Just look at how the media has been portraying Catholics in the wake of the HSS mandate. Anyway, as many have pointed out, Dawkins and the other new atheists aren't really the most intellectually serious defenders of atheism, even their understanding of evolution is questionable, but I think the worry here is the influence this sort of thing will have on young people. A lot kids today are big fans of Dawkins and the others, which can result in young Christians facing a good deal of peer pressure when it comes to religion. Just mention religion in front of college-aged kids and see how worked up many of them get. Now, you might just say that anyone who would leave Christianity because of this wasn't a real Christian in the first place, but you do have to have some sympathy for the many people who have never really been educated about their faith, and who now have to deal with a culture that is extremely hostile to any religious belief at all.

(03-28-2012, 02:07 AM)Aragon Wrote: [ -> ]“If you meet somebody who says he's Catholic, for example, say: 'What do you mean? Do you just mean you were baptized Catholic, because I'm not impressed by that.'”

Also, who on earth cares about what impresses Richard Dawkins? The fact that Dawkins thinks he can decide what qualifies as true religious belief, saying that a person who can't name the Gospels isn't a real Christian for instance, is just mind blowing.

I can see his point here.

Unless you are very dim or mentally incapacitated it is somewhat silly to claim you are part of a religion while you don't know the basic facts about that religion.  Likewise I would expect a person holding a driving licence to know the rules of the road.

For an adult to claim they are Christian and to not have read the four Gospels by the time they are say 18 does make something of a mockery of that claim.

Religion is a serious business dealing with serious issues.  People who claim to be part of that religion or followers of that religion should make an effort to understand the basics of what that religion says.

To not know the ten commandments or the names of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John not only reveals a person to be a dummy, but also suggests they are blindly following the culture, peer pressure or the values their parents gave to them.  And that plays towards Dawkins argument that religion for most people is a cultural badge or membership to a certain clan, and nothing more.
(03-28-2012, 05:33 AM)ggreg Wrote: [ -> ]
(03-28-2012, 03:08 AM)Crusading Philologist Wrote: [ -> ]Well, this is already taking place. Just look at how the media has been portraying Catholics in the wake of the HSS mandate. Anyway, as many have pointed out, Dawkins and the other new atheists aren't really the most intellectually serious defenders of atheism, even their understanding of evolution is questionable, but I think the worry here is the influence this sort of thing will have on young people. A lot kids today are big fans of Dawkins and the others, which can result in young Christians facing a good deal of peer pressure when it comes to religion. Just mention religion in front of college-aged kids and see how worked up many of them get. Now, you might just say that anyone who would leave Christianity because of this wasn't a real Christian in the first place, but you do have to have some sympathy for the many people who have never really been educated about their faith, and who now have to deal with a culture that is extremely hostile to any religious belief at all.

(03-28-2012, 02:07 AM)Aragon Wrote: [ -> ]“If you meet somebody who says he's Catholic, for example, say: 'What do you mean? Do you just mean you were baptized Catholic, because I'm not impressed by that.'”

Also, who on earth cares about what impresses Richard Dawkins? The fact that Dawkins thinks he can decide what qualifies as true religious belief, saying that a person who can't name the Gospels isn't a real Christian for instance, is just mind blowing.

I can see his point here.

Unless you are very dim or mentally incapacitated it is somewhat silly to claim you are part of a religion while you don't know the basic facts about that religion.  Likewise I would expect a person holding a driving licence to know the rules of the road.

For an adult to claim they are Christian and to not have read the four Gospels by the time they are say 18 does make something of a mockery of that claim.

Religion is a serious business dealing with serious issues.  People who claim to be part of that religion or followers of that religion should make an effort to understand the basics of what that religion says.

To not know the ten commandments or the names of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John not only reveals a person to be a dummy, but also suggests they are blindly following the culture, peer pressure or the values their parents gave to them.  And that plays towards Dawkins argument that religion for most people is a cultural badge or membership to a certain clan, and nothing more.
Well said ggreg.
Dawkin's needs to be mocked for "believing" a worm can turn into an elephant.

Kent Hovind used to condense evolution into the following quite nicely (paraphrasing)

"it rained on the rocks for millions of years and turned them into soup. And the soup came alive about three billion years ago. And this early life form found someone to marry. (A pretty good trick!) And something to eat. And very slowly evolved into everything we see today. That is the evolutionary teaching in a nutshell. "
(03-28-2012, 05:33 AM)ggreg Wrote: [ -> ]
(03-28-2012, 03:08 AM)Crusading Philologist Wrote: [ -> ]Well, this is already taking place. Just look at how the media has been portraying Catholics in the wake of the HSS mandate. Anyway, as many have pointed out, Dawkins and the other new atheists aren't really the most intellectually serious defenders of atheism, even their understanding of evolution is questionable, but I think the worry here is the influence this sort of thing will have on young people. A lot kids today are big fans of Dawkins and the others, which can result in young Christians facing a good deal of peer pressure when it comes to religion. Just mention religion in front of college-aged kids and see how worked up many of them get. Now, you might just say that anyone who would leave Christianity because of this wasn't a real Christian in the first place, but you do have to have some sympathy for the many people who have never really been educated about their faith, and who now have to deal with a culture that is extremely hostile to any religious belief at all.

(03-28-2012, 02:07 AM)Aragon Wrote: [ -> ]“If you meet somebody who says he's Catholic, for example, say: 'What do you mean? Do you just mean you were baptized Catholic, because I'm not impressed by that.'”

Also, who on earth cares about what impresses Richard Dawkins? The fact that Dawkins thinks he can decide what qualifies as true religious belief, saying that a person who can't name the Gospels isn't a real Christian for instance, is just mind blowing.

I can see his point here.

Unless you are very dim or mentally incapacitated it is somewhat silly to claim you are part of a religion while you don't know the basic facts about that religion.  Likewise I would expect a person holding a driving licence to know the rules of the road.

For an adult to claim they are Christian and to not have read the four Gospels by the time they are say 18 does make something of a mockery of that claim.

Religion is a serious business dealing with serious issues.  People who claim to be part of that religion or followers of that religion should make an effort to understand the basics of what that religion says.

To not know the ten commandments or the names of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John not only reveals a person to be a dummy, but also suggests they are blindly following the culture, peer pressure or the values their parents gave to them.  And that plays towards Dawkins argument that religion for most people is a cultural badge or membership to a certain clan, and nothing more.

I suppose, but I'm not sure that just being a Christian because of peer pressure or your parents is completely worthless. Most people in any society are going to be only somewhat religious, but this doesn't mean that they can't benefit from being surrounded by a Christian society.
Basically, Dawkins is saying that atheists need a creed, a process of evangelization, and regular public meetings.

A Church of Atheists?  Quid rides, Mr. DawkinsHuh?
(03-28-2012, 12:31 PM)Warrenton Wrote: [ -> ]Basically, Dawkins is saying that atheists need a creed, a process of evangelization, and regular public meetings.

A Church of Atheists?  Quid rides, Mr. DawkinsHuh?

Dawkins is submitting his candidacy for the papacy of the atheists.
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