Science vs God Episode II: Does Atheism Poison Everything?


Here’s a debate between Christopher Hitchens and Dr. David Berlinski, an admitted secular Jew who does not practice any religion. He does however have advanced degrees in mathematics and philosophy. Hitchens’ reputation is well known.

In this debate, two debate the opposite proposition that Hitchens made in one of his books, that religion poisons everything.

4 comments

  1. Magus, I’d like to offer this point that I believe frequently gets missed.

    There is no more spiritual nourishment in science than there is in a craft like woodworking. Science is a wonderful way of finding out how the world works, and it is thrilling to discover something, but science does not and cannot give meaning or purpose to life.

    Therefore I fundamentally do not see any conflict between religion and science.

  2. I found Hitchens to be more forthright and thorough in his analysis here. There are many points with which I would disagree but they would require a different framework in regard to the existence or not of God. Much of this debate was constrained by implementations of the religions in the discussion as opposed to the what is known vs what is knowable framework, where probabilities and uncertainties lie, and the boundaries of Divine providence, whatever the religion.

    This debate was also very western in its point/counterpoint nature. Of course that pretty much goes with the territory of debate. Though I was looking for a more fuzzy logic approach from Berlinsky.

  3. Yes, the debate was primarily about if religion in bad in and of itself, which Hitchens asserts it is. I think Berlinsky makes a few good points, primarily that removing religion has not proven to make angels of men. He cedes that religion poisons some things, but surely it doesnt poisin everything,as Hitchens’ book asserts.

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