Monday, October 24, 2011

The Jedi Master of Religious Debate

I think Paul Vallely's article is helpful on Richard Dawkin's refusal to debate William Lane Craig.

See, in The Independent, "Paul Vallely: God knows why Dawkins won't show - Our leading atheists prefer abuse to argument when faced with a tough-talking Christian opponent."

Vallely refers to Bill as "the Jedi Master of religious debate."

Vallely writes: "When A C Grayling was invited to debate Craig's assertion that, without religion, there are no objective moral values, only social conventions, he scornfully replied: "I would be happy to debate him on the question of the existence of fairies and water-nymphs." So much for the assertion by the British Humanist Association, of which Grayling is a luminary, that one of its core values is "engaging in debate rationally, intelligently and with attention to evidence"."

Yes, that is interesting, isn't it?

Vallely: "So who's afraid of William Lane Craig? Not everyone. The philosopher Stephen Law, from Heythrop College, gave Craig a good run for his money on Monday by turning many of Craig's arguments inside out and postulating the idea that God does exist but is evil, not good."

That, too, is interesting. Far more interesting than Dawkins's and Grayling's refusal to debate Bill. I've already commented on Law's point. I think it would be hard to establish an isomorphic relationship between a "all-good God" and an "all-evil God." Similar problems arise when one tries to convert the Ontological Argument into an argument for a perfectly evil being. But this discussion, I am certain, will continue. And bravo to Stephen Law for giving it a go!