Sunday, January 20, 2008

The Curiously Postmodern Modern Apologists

"Back in November, a debate with a Christian in another comment thread took a curious turn:

"But I have faith in the gospel and what it promises me, just like you have faith in your readings. Your suposed facts and my suposed facts, what makes mine so wrong and your so right. Are facts from the bible so different from the facts you read from magazines, books and websites....nope. It all boils down to faith. Until you can tell me that you were there from the beginning up until now, you dont really have facts of your own do you. Neither do I, I dont proclaim to like you do. Faith boys, we all have faith, faith in what is up to you. I think I will stick with the gospel on this one."

Although this Christian believer didn't notice, what he was actually advocating was postmodernism and relativism. Just like the strawman academics whom conservatives love to hate, he was effectively proclaiming that there's no objective truth and no way to decide between competing worldviews, so we might as well choose whichever one makes us feel best.


It's mind-blowingly ironic that creationists and other Christian apologists, who've gone on so many jeremiads about our society's drifting away from God's absolute truth, are now advocating a relativist view in which the evidence is insufficient to decide any question and what you believe is simply a matter of which arbitrary premises you start out with. Perhaps we should take it as a good sign, an indicator of retreat: instead of arguing that their position is proven and others are disproven, religious apologists nowadays are seemingly reduced to claiming that we can't know that their position is false. Or perhaps it's just that they've discovered the postmodernist position can be useful: it makes it possible for even the most uneducated apologist to raise an insurmountable defense against rational counterargument."

Daylight Atheism, Jan 9, 2008

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