A Scientist and a Comedian Discuss God

Recently I’ve been enjoying the maze of Mormonism, for which there will be a little of my work, in addition to (due my own massive workload) a lot of material from others, though they as always will be from the best quality sources. I’m avoiding the topic today however for an excellent atheist on atheist interview! Since it would seem that Ricky Gervais and Richard Dawkins have been singled out for a philosophy class by the world’s greatest debater Dr William Lane Craig, and this nobody should miss. Luke Muehlhauser, who spoke at a conference in California titled “Why the New Atheists Failed, and How to Defeat All Religious Arguments in One Easy Step” explained what Richard and Ricky are showing millions these days, they’re showing by their sycophantic laughter and poor quality arguments that atheism just isn’t impressing anyone (atheists included!). And although I didn’t find any cure-all for the problem of religion as was described on the tin during the above conference, what I did find was good criticism of atheism by an atheist.

“Of course the religious philosophers write a lot about the New Atheists because they’re quite eager to show how bad their arguments are, but atheistic philosophers mostly just ignore the New Atheists, because they’re working with better arguments already, and there’s just nothing to work with in the New Atheists.”

So atheists aren’t in denial over this, they’re happy (not a word normally associated with atheists) to say that whatever it was that New Atheism brought to the table, it wasn’t positive or intellectually satisfying. It was in fact petty, divisive and shallow, fuelled by the arrogance of people and a prejudice that many atheists today would be ashamed of. But therein is the positive for the new new atheists, they now know that their arguments were bad, they’re painfully aware that their movement was based on belittling and hounding good, highly intellectual people who disagreed with them. Though some people within the self-styled infidel community haven’t yet reached this level of maturity, enter Richard Dawkins and Ricky Gervais.

― T. C. M

A Scientist and a Comedian Discuss God Part 1

KEVIN HARRIS: Believe it or not, that is actor-comedian Ricky Gervais in 1983 in the British pop duo Seona Dancing. It was not a successful band but they were very popular in the Philippines. Ricky has gone on to be a very successful comedian and actor. Why are we going to evaluate an interview with Ricky Gervais and Richard Dawkins? Neither are philosophers so are way off on so many things they say about God, so why bother? The answer is: when a video on YouTube or elsewhere goes viral it obviously influences the culture. Perhaps we should offer some perspective to as many as we can who maybe misled by it and to help our regular listeners of the Reasonable Faith podcast to graciously interact with the things that so penetrate culture. If you think about it, many of these videos that go viral (are popular) because they have a certain common-sense appeal or rhetorical or technical power. It is good to unpack what is being said. That is what I’ve asked Dr. Craig to do today with a video that features Dr. Richard Dawkins interviewing Ricky Gervais. We’ll take it a segment at a time and pause to hear from Dr. Craig on certain points. Here’s the first of that interview.

RICHARD DAWKINS: Some people would say that the scientific view is rather bleak and cold. Here we are on a cloud of, on a bit of dust really orbiting the sun, and it is all going to go, it’s all going to be destroyed one day. Do you find it bleak?

RICKY GERVAIS: There is no God-fearing person of any religion who feels as much awe as me when I see a mountain or a tree . . .

RICHARD DAWKINS: . . . or the stars.

RICKY GERVAIS: . . . or the stars or anything in science and nature and art. I don’t buy it. I just don’t buy it. The fact that this is a miraculous mistake . . .

RICHARD DAWKINS: You and I are privileged to be here to enjoy it, even if for a short time. That is a wonderful thought.

RICKY GERVAIS: Yeah. It is good that we were born after they discovered fossils of dinosaurs, isn’t it?

RICHARD DAWKINS: Or that we were born at all. But yes.

RICKY GERVAIS: Oh yeah, of course, yeah. What would that have been like?

RICHARD DAWKINS: Nothing.

RICKY GERVAIS: What would you be like if you were pre-Darwin?

RICHARD DAWKINS: Oh, I would probably believe in God if I were pre-Darwin.

RICKY GERVAIS: Well this is the other thing. Sometimes I say to Christians, “Why do you believe in that God?” And they say, “well it’s the only God to believe in.” But if you were born in Delhi, you wouldn’t believe in that God probably. If you were born in ancient Rome, you certainly wouldn’t believe in that God.

RICHARD DAWKINS: Yes, you believe in the god of your parents and your grandparents. Most people do.

RICKY GERVAIS: I think so, yeah. I mean, you know, there is conversions. Many people that seek one – they window shop – they go “What can you do for me? What do I have to do? Forget it. What do you do? I can still smoke and drink? I like that one.” You know? Of course.

RICHARD DAWKINS: There are people who say, “I was on a quest and I tried Buddhism, and it was all right, but I thought maybe I’d try again so I tried Hinduism.”

RICKY GERVAIS: Yeah, yeah. Which one spoke to you? Yeah, I know.

DR. CRAIG: This is interesting because Gervais unknowingly makes a point that undermined Dawkins’ own assertion. He asks Dawkins, What would you believe if you lived prior to Darwin? and Dawkins said, I would be a theist. Then Gervais comes back by saying, Well if you had been born in New Delhi you wouldn’t believe in God. If you’d been born in some ancient place you would have had different beliefs than the ones you do have. He’s implying that therefore one’s present beliefs are invalid and false because if you’d been born someplace else you would have had different beliefs. What that suggests is that Dawkins’ own atheism – his own beliefs – are just a product of his being born in this time and place and that if he had been born someplace else he would have had quite different beliefs. This is the kind of double-edged sword that the genetic fallacy gets you into. Trying to invalidate a person’s beliefs by showing how he came to hold them is a fallacy. Pointing out that you would have held different beliefs if you were born in a different time and place in history does absolutely nothing to invalidate the truth of the beliefs that you do have. If they do then it invalidates Dawkins’ own beliefs.

KEVIN HARRIS: Bill, they started the video off talking about the beauty of the trees and the stars. Ricky says I have just as much appreciation and am just as awed as any God-believing person. What’s the point they are trying to make there?

DR. CRAIG: The point was supposed to be that the world mediated to us by modern science is not bleak. But I don’t think that refutes the claim. When we talk about the bleakness of the world that is described solely by science, what one means is that this is a world which exists to no purpose, it will ultimately end in the heat death of the universe as the universe expands into a cold, lifeless, dark, and dilute condition from which it will never re-emerge. It puts a question mark behind the entire edifice of human civilization and accomplishment. All of the things that Gervais mentions as noble and good about humanity are all doomed to destruction in the heat death of the universe. That’s the bleakness of the worldview – of scientific naturalism. It has nothing to do with the fact that one can appreciate the beauty of a mountainside or art or music or something of that sort.

KEVIN HARRIS: Let’s continue.

RICKY GERVAIS: It should be irrelevant, but it isn’t because it does infringe on people’s liberties. Certainly religion. Not spirituality. Someone believing in God – that’s fine.

RICHARD DAWKINS: Harmless.

RICKY GERVAIS: Absolutely. Doesn’t bother me at all. Religion isn’t harmless. It is when your God starts telling you that you should kill homosexuals . . .

RICHARD DAWKINS: Exactly.

RICKY GERVAIS: That is when it is not harmless anymore.

DR. CRAIG: Dawkins himself has affirmed that we are just animated chunks of matter so on his own view (this demeaning view that we are just a bag of chemicals on bones) why is that troubling? Because it means that we are not rational free agents. We are just determined. There is no free will. There is no ability to reason rationally. We are just determined in everything that we do by our genetic makeup and the stimuli that we receive through our senses. That is, indeed, discouraging, I think. As Dawkins says in The God Delusion, there is no good, there is no evil, there is just pitiless indifference. We are machines for propagating DNA, and there isn’t anything more to our existence than that. I think that is a very depressing view of human existence.

KEVIN HARRIS: What did you think about what they said about believing in God – be spiritual, that is harmless. Dawkins hasn’t treated it like it is very harmless. He has really gone after theism. But he said religion is not harmless. Religion can cause great pain. I don’t know anybody who would disagree with that.

DR. CRAIG: I know. So much of this interview is just banalities. I don’t even find it interesting. It is just banal talking about these silly truisms that religion can be misused for great atrocities. Well, the same thing is true of atheism. Look at Stalin. Look at Mao. For goodness sake – the atrocities perpetrated in the name of atheism make atrocities in the name of religion pale by significance. So this is uninteresting.

KEVIN HARRIS: Let’s continue the video.

RICHARD DAWKINS: I was interested you said that you really objected to people being bored. You should never be bored. And I think that is right. The world is a wonderful enough place you should never be bored. If you are bored you are doing something wrong.

RICKY GERVAIS: Well, you are probably ignorant in some way. I don’t mean that in a nasty way, but you haven’t seen the possibilities. No one has pointed them out to you. Opportunity, that’s very important. The place you are born. There are some places people are born into poverty with less opportunity and less things to do and see. If you’re being shot at or your firstborn has a 1 in 4 chance of not surviving the first year, you are probably not thinking of taking up macrame. So, you know, privilege is luck to a certain extent. But then it is what you do with it. There again that is politics. I consider myself privileged certainly.

RICHARD DAWKINS: Yes. It is a lot easier to enjoy life if you are privileged in that sort of way.

RICKY GERVAIS: Of course. You know.

RICHARD DAWKINS: There are some people who say that to explain existence – to explain life, to explain that we are (as they would put it rather demeaningly) a bundle of chemicals, somehow makes it, makes life not worth living.

RICKY GERVAIS: Why?

RICHARD DAWKINS: Why, indeed.

RICKY GERVAIS: I don’t understand it.

RICHARD DAWKINS: It is wonderful even if you can explain it. It is even more wonderful if you could explain it.

RICKY GERVAIS: There is a magic there. There is a magic to consciousness, introspection, free will.

RICHARD DAWKINS: And the fact that you can say that it is done by nerve impulses speeding around the brain doesn’t diminish it in any way. It is still wonderful. Actually, I think it is more wonderful.

RICKY GERVAIS: I think it is because it is amazing. Magic does it for you. Magic goes as magic.

RICHARD DAWKINS: It is amazing that this conscious being, this thinking being that is me, and that thinking being that is you, is actually produced by millions of nerve impulses whizzing around inside our brain. I mean that is a magical thought.

RICKY GERVAIS: It is great isn’t it – we are in each other’s dream. Even if free will is an illusion, it makes no difference. It makes a difference to us.

KEVIN HARRIS: Bill, this is the magic show!

DR. CRAIG: I know! They keep using the word magic! I’m sure they are meaning this in a metaphorical sense – it is magical in the sense of wondrous. They said “amazing.” But it is worse than that. It really is magic that on a scientific naturalistic view of the world, you’ve got these transcendental selves – these consciousnesses – which Gervais thinks have free will. I am not sure what Dawkins’ view is of the self, but in any case if it is totally dependent or supervenient upon the brain and the direction of causal influence is totally from the brain to the consciousness (not from the mind to the brain or the body) – if the direction of causality is asymmetrical (it is just from the body to the consciousness) – then again that lands you right into determinism. While that may be complicated and amazing in that sense (which it is) nevertheless that completely robs human life of any sort of moral significance or, I think, rational decision-making. It just turns you into the bag of chemicals that Dawkins was talking about earlier.

KEVIN HARRIS: He says, though, that because this is just chemical firings in your brain that that does not diminish the magic of it one bit, or the wonder of it one bit. In fact, he thinks because it is all natural and God doesn’t have anything to do with it, he thinks that makes it more wonderful. Why would he say that?

DR. CRAIG: I think because of the complexity of it. As he said, it is amazing. The human body is absolutely astonishing. The human brain is the most complex organism in the entire universe. There is nothing more complex than that single human brain. So it is astonishing and amazing. I agree with him completely about that. But the question we, I think, are supposed to be asking is: is human life worth living on this sort of naturalistic view of the self and the person? What I am waiting to hear is something that would invest human beings with freedom of the will, rationality, moral significance, and those sorts of things don’t come into the picture on scientific naturalism except by the repeated appeal to magic.

KEVIN HARRIS: We’ll continue.

RICHARD DAWKINS: I feel as though I have free will, even if I don’t.

RICKY GERVAIS: Of course. And, you know, I’d say determinism is sound. But it is when they start making these leaps that we can’t be responsible for our own actions. Well, you’ve still got to lock someone up if they go around murdering people to protect the innocent.

RICHARD DAWKINS: Yes. It wasn’t me that did the murder . . . it was my neurons and my genes.

RICKY GERVAIS: Of course. Yeah, it doesn’t work. There is obviously a little bit of that creeping into everything – responsibility, being adult about things. But yeah it doesn’t change a thing. I feel that I make my own choices, and if I don’t I certainly feel like I am choosing. So yeah it is not even worth worrying about. But yeah this thing that takes the art out of something or the humanity or the beauty – why? Why does it? It is strange.

DR. CRAIG: All right. I’ve heard this from other naturalists, too. It doesn’t matter if free will is an illusion because you think you have it. You are under the illusion of acting freely and so you can do nothing else. But of course it matters enormously because if you really don’t have any free will then you are literally deluded. You are the most pathetic of creatures to think that you have free will and are making significant choices when in fact you are not. You are just a machine is all, and your choices have no moral significance. They are not done for rational reasons. I think they have completely stripped humanity of any sort of significance different from that of a worm. It is just a more complicated nervous system. They don’t seem to get the point.

KEVIN HARRIS: They are reacting to what they are always being told, what is always being thrown at them, in the same way that atheists, agnostics, and so on are always said, “How can you be moral without God?” We’ve demonstrated, and your work has shown, yes, you can. You can recognize morality. In the same way they are saying, OK, not only can we recognize and act morally without God, we can also recognize beauty and enjoy life and we are tired of you people telling us that we can’t without belief in God. That is what they are reacting to. They are trying to convince the public that, Yes, we can. Maybe we need to do what you are doing and not just throw in their faces, How can you guys appreciate the world and life?

DR. CRAIG: Oh, but he does say that. Nobody says atheists can’t appreciate music and beauty and architecture and literature. They are fighting against bogeymen of their own imagination. No intelligent Christian is making those sorts of claims. They are making the claims that I just made that they are giving us a worldview that strips us of rationality, moral significance, and freedom. Yet they don’t seem to understand the existential importance of that because they are happy to be deluded. They are happy to operate under the illusion that you have these things.

KEVIN HARRIS: He said, If it is an illusion, great. I’m enjoying this illusion.

DR. CRAIG: Yeah, right. It reminds me of what Jean-Paul Sartre, the French existentialist said. People would choose inauthentic existence rather than authentic existence because they can’t bear the heavy burden of freedom and really making significant choices. I can think of nothing that more exemplifies the choice to be inauthentic than what we’ve just heard. Inauthentic existence – I would prefer to operate under the illusion that I have free will and am significant than face the hard facts of what my worldview implies.

KEVIN HARRIS: Let’s pick it up there next time on Reasonable Faith with Dr. William Lane Craig. Be sure you come back.

A Scientist and a Comedian Discuss God Part 2

KEVIN HARRIS: Welcome back to Reasonable Faith with Dr. William Lane Craig. We are going to continue this interview with Ricky Gervais and Richard Dawkins – the comedian and the scientist talking about God in part two here. I really think that it is worth emphasizing why we are doing this. It is not because these two guys are titans of philosophy – obviously, they are not. But they are very popular. Things like this just get passed around in social media. I think I do a count of how many people had watched this video on YouTube toward the end of the podcast, but since then it has ballooned even further. So millions of people are affected and potentially millions more. How do you answer some of the platitudes and sayings and phrases that are just passed around and around? Dr. Craig is really going to shed some light here on How do I answer some of these things that are in the popular culture? Let’s continue with this interview between Richard Dawkins and Ricky Gervais.

RICKY GERVAIS: I’d say determinism is sound. But it is when they start making these leaps that we can’t be responsible for our own actions. Well, you’ve still got to lock someone up if they go around murdering people to protect the innocent.

RICHARD DAWKINS: Yes. It wasn’t me that did the murder … it was my neurons and my genes.

RICKY GERVAIS: Of course. Yeah, it doesn’t work. There is obviously a little bit of that creeping into everything – responsibility, being adult about things. But yeah it doesn’t change a thing. I feel that I make my own choices, and if I don’t I certainly feel like I am choosing. So yeah it is not even worth worrying about.

DR. CRAIG: He tries to say that if everything is determined then how do you meet the challenge that nobody is responsible for what he does? Dawkins says my neurons made me do it. Right, that is exactly correct on a deterministic view. So there is no moral responsibility. Gervais’ response is you’ve got to lock them up anyway to protect other people. But that doesn’t rescue moral responsibility. You still have completely evacuated our choices of any moral significance and therefore made impossible moral praise or blame on this view.

KEVIN HARRIS: But he feels like determinism is sound.

DR. CRAIG: Here again, I feel like I’m free, and that is all that matters. It doesn’t make it worth worrying about. Well, it certainly makes it worth worrying about if you are asking that original question: is human life worth living? On their view, you are just machines, not rational moral agents, and there is no moral praise or blame on his view. For anybody who thinks deeply, this is a very troubling view of the world. To just be happy to say that you feel like you have free will even if you don’t is, as I say, incredibly inauthentic.

KEVIN HARRIS: It is like he is saying, I think determinism is sound, but nevertheless I feel like I am making my own choices.

DR. CRAIG: Right. He thinks determinism is true, but in effect he is saying I can’t live that way. It is really true. You can’t live as if determinism is true. It is impossible to live consistently with this atheistic view of the world, as though everything you do is just determined. Because you’d never reflect on anything. You would just act. But on determinism, even your reflections are determined. It is not rational.

KEVIN HARRIS: Let’s continue.

RICKY GERVAIS: This thing that takes the art out of something or the humanity or the beauty – why? Why does it? It is strange. And the way the thing is all too good it’s all too perfect. What do you mean? Why? You haven’t seen the process. There is a wonderful thing where Douglas Adams goes against the intelligent design theory – is it’s a puddle.

RICHARD DAWKINS: Ah, the puddle, yes.

RICKY GERVAIS: Great isn’t it?

RICHARD DAWKINS: Tell the story.

RICKY GERVAIS: It is just that a puddle is pondering and it says, “I must have been designed because I fit this hole perfectly. Which is just beautiful. What a beautiful metaphor for trying to explain evolution and everything.

KEVIN HARRIS: What he is referring to there is Douglas Adams talking about – This puddle must be designed, look how perfectly the water fits in the hole.

DR. CRAIG: Yeah. What a silly caricature of intelligent design reasoning. That doesn’t bear any relationship whatsoever.

KEVIN HARRIS: Maybe Adams is trying to be funny, but people have run with it as if it’s serious.

DR. CRAIG: Honestly, Kevin, this just shows the intellectual deficiency of anybody who thinks like that. This is comparing the teleological argument to somebody who says that the human nose must be designed because look at the way it is just in the right place to support your glasses for correcting your vision. That is a ridiculous argument because the thing has been tailored to fit this way. Similarly, the water fits the puddle because it has to flow into the dimensions of the hole. But that has nothing to do with either the sort of biological complexity that exists in the world or the fine-tuning of the initial conditions of the universe which are not comparable to these sort of fallacious examples of supposed design.

RICKY GERVAIS: Their best argument ironically is just faith.

RICHARD DAWKINS: Pretty pathetic really, isn’t it?

RICKY GERVAIS: Well, it is pathetic, but they mustn’t ever engage in logic. It is like Top Trumps – they mustn’t pick logic on their cards. They’ve got a great faith, 100%, and then you go, yeah, sorry, you win. That’s the only way they are going to win the Top Trumps. They’ve got to keep away. Some embrace science. Some say God started the Big Bang. He made the Big Bang. He let it all happen. It was programmed. But now he is not an interventionist God. So you believe in evolution? Yeah, but he did all that. Fine. Fine. But then he gave man free will. So then it is not his fault anymore. Then I say, “Why do you pray then?” Because it makes me feel good. I think they sort of know, but they don’t want to know. What’s the point? I’ve seen people die, but they are looking down on me. They are still around. You know? That is human in a way. We don’t want to think we are alone and we’ll never see our loved ones again. Some we’d avoid. Pets aren’t allowed. I know people that stopped believing in God because pets weren’t allowed in heaven. What’s up with the dog? No soul. No soul. Yeah, so it is a minefield, really, for them.

DR. CRAIG: The “minefield” is for him and Dawkins, and they don’t even seem to realize that they are staggering blindfolded through this minefield trying to affirm the value of human life and its wonder and worth, all the time affirming scientific naturalism (that we are just animated chunks of matter determined to do what we do like machines and having no rationality, no free will, no moral worth). Then this blithe sort of breezy dismissal of religious concerns. To me, it is just amazing to see people discoursing like this. And then, saying it is the religious believers who are the ones who are illogical. This fellow is the one who needs to take a good course in elementary logic.

RICKY GERVAIS: Agnostics annoy me more.

RICHARD DAWKINS: Oh yeah?

RICKY GERVAIS: Oh, this new trendy little linguistic piece of logic that since neither can know you’ve got to be agnostic. Well, OK. That’s fair enough. But do you follow the same rules with fairies and Santa? No, you don’t. Would you tell your kid that we don’t know if Santa exists or not? No. You wouldn’t.

DR. CRAIG: Here it seems to me he is trying to justify the move to atheism from agnosticism by saying that if you don’t have evidence for something therefore you are justified in believing that thing doesn’t exist. That is clearly fallacious. He calls it a nifty logical move to try to say that you are just left with agnosticism. The whole question here is under what conditions does absence of evidence count as evidence of absence? It would be in cases in which if the thing did exist you would expect to have more evidence of its existence than what you have, and secondly that you have thoroughly compassed the field where that evidence should appear and not found it. The atheist, then, has the very heavy burden of showing that those two conditions are met in the case of God. Certainly, these fellows have not shouldered that burden successfully.

KEVIN HARRIS: How long, Bill, are we going to have to beat this Santa, fairies, flying spaghetti monster thing? Here he is bringing it up again. They are comparing it.

RICKY GERVAIS: Which one don’t you know about?

RICHARD DAWKINS: Thor?

RICKY GERVAIS: Exactly, yeah. That is the other thing, as well. I am an atheist and I don’t believe in about 2,700 gods. Christians don’t believe in 2,699. So they are nearly as atheistic as me. As a percentage they are right up there. They are very nearly an atheist.

DR. CRAIG: Does this silliness even need refutation, Kevin? The difference between a theist and an atheist is that the theist believes that God exists! There is, in particular, an omnipotent, omniscient, eternal, metaphysically necessary, all-good, creator of the universe to whom we are responsible. That is not a hairsbreadth away from an atheist who denies that there is any such being! So this is just intellectually silly to make this comparison.

KEVIN HARRIS: We have to continue fighting this battle because years ago we dealt with this quote from some guy named Steve (that’s all I remember) saying, I believe in one less god than you do. And here he is bringing that out again.

DR. CRAIG: What this seems to show is that just as in the Christian subculture there are certain patterns of thinking, styles, lingo, that gets perpetuated on and on and on, and is sort of insulated from the wider world. I think in the atheist subculture, too, there must be this sort of insular pattern of thinking that just gets perpetuated from one generation to the next.

KEVIN HARRIS: You are exactly right. Little bumper sticker sayings.

RICHARD DAWKINS: What if they said, Well, I don’t care which god it is, but I believe there is something. Something unknowable.

RICKY GERVAIS: Some people do, and that just means I don’t know, I’m not sure. Which is fair enough. It’s a start. I wouldn’t be smug with that sort of thing because maybe they’ve never thought about it or they don’t understand.

RICHARD DAWKINS: I would agree with that. I think the mistake comes when you say Because I don’t know therefore the likelihood is 50/50. It doesn’t have to be 50/50.

RICKY GERVAIS: Well, of course. There is lots we don’t know, but we don’t jump to conclusions. We don’t know everything about the brain, but that is not to say that everything about the brain is unknowable.

RICHARD DAWKINS: We rejoice in not knowing, not because we don’t want to know but because we’ve got something to work on.

RICKY GERVAIS: Absolutely. That is why people do puzzles. It comes back to hobbies. You do a puzzle because you don’t know the answer yet.

RICHARD DAWKINS: Scientists are doing puzzles trying to find out the answers to the nature of reality.

RICKY GERVAIS: Absolutely. Of course. That is all we do. Science just tries to understand the world a bit more for its own ends.

RICHARD DAWKINS: And it is a wonderful process. Worth living for.

RICKY GERVAIS: It is fantastic, because it should enhance mankind.

DR. CRAIG: Let’s just comment on that, because I think this is correct. He is talking about the physical world. Science tries to understand the physical world and the way it works, and this is a wonderful process. If only these New Atheists would stick to that limited understanding of science and its project, much of this whole debate would be eliminated. It is when they begin to arrogate to themselves the role of telling us how reality as a whole is beyond the physical world that they get out of their field of specialization and begin to make metaphysical claims which they cannot support. So all of this talk of God and religion and so forth is extra-scientific, and therefore it is outside of their domain of expertise and outside the domain of science.

KEVIN HARRIS: If you were to press Ricky you would probably see that he is probably pretty scientistic – he says science is about discovering the nature of . . .

DR. CRAIG: . . . the world. If they would just stick to the world – the physical world (which is a part of reality) – then it would be unproblematic. Maybe you are right, Kevin. When he says “the world” he means everything there is. If that is the case then you are right. That is scientism, not recognizing the limits of science.

RICKY GERVAIS: I hate being labeled an atheist because it is not how I live my life. I don’t live my life going around going, “I’m an atheist. I’m an atheist.” There are billions of other aspects to my life, why I do things. It is just when God is brought into the equation, I don’t take that on board. I don’t do anything because a god is watching me or because I feel God owns anything or God is driving me. It is a strange word and it is a strange label . . . we where white middle-aged Western men . . . we blew it because we are atheists. So we are the most hated, oppressed people on the planet. You can’t run for President if you are an atheist.

RICHARD DAWKINS: Well, you can, but you won’t get in.

RICKY GERVAIS: Oh, well, great point. Yeah.

DR. CRAIG: The bit at the end – attempting to portray themselves as victims – is the most ludicrous of all. Here are two extremely successful and rich men thinking themselves as poor me because I am an atheist. I am so shunned and victimized. Don’t make me laugh.

KEVIN HARRIS: Look at the count, though, of how many people have watched this. 1,132,078. 14,403 likes, 554 dislikes.

DR. CRAIG: That’s not very many likes out of over a million. I think you should dislike it, Kevin.

KEVIN HARRIS: I’m gonna hit a dislike. I dislike it.

DR. CRAIG: I dislike it.

KEVIN HARRIS: Dislike. [laughter]

Thank you, Dr. Craig. Hey, did you know that just the name of this podcast and this organization has piqued the interest and changed the perception of multitudes of people. So many people have a wrong perception of what faith is, and they certainly have come to think that it is not reasonable. So our very name – Reasonable Faith – gets people’s attention. We battle this all the time because there are so many voices telling people that one must have blind faith or whatever to be a follower of Christ; that one cannot be an intellectually fulfilled follower of Christ. If you join us in our passion to present the truth of Jesus in an intellectually rigorous yet gracious way then partner with us. Your financial gift to Reasonable Faith ensures that this work continues and grows. Give anytime online at ReasonableFaith.org. Sign up for the Reasonable Faith newsletter while you are there to keep up with the latest from Dr. Craig. That’s ReasonableFaith.org. I’m Kevin Harris. We’ll see you next time on Reasonable Faith with Dr. William Lane Craig.

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