Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Works Cited

Dawkins speaks scoffingly of a personal God, as though it were entirely obvious exactly what this might mean. He seems to imagine God, if not exactly with a white beard, then at least as some kind of chap, however supersized. He asks how this chap can speak to billions of people simultaneously, which is rather like wondering why, if Tony Blair is an octopus, he has only two arms. For Judeo-Christianity, God is not a person in the sense that Al Gore arguably is.

Terry Eagleton, Lunging, Flailing, Mispunching


Jacob Lyles said...

To be fair, Dawkins gets his idea of a person-like God from the Bible. Many Christian religions do have such a God.

Dawkins can't address every sect of Christianity at once, so he speaks to the most popular beliefs.

Scott said...

To be fair, he's explicit in the book that he is addressing all forms of religion, from the more extreme to the more moderate, from deism to orthodoxies.

And my general impression is that most Christian religions hold a more abstract view of God, not the "chap" Dawkins envisions, which supports Eagelton's charge of attacking a straw man (or at least, not tackling the opponents' case at its most robust).