Sunday, August 20, 2006
Sam Harris Says Science & God Book is Meaningless Drivel
In this essay, the bestselling secularist author of The End of Faith delivers a scathing review of The Language of God, a new book by Human Genome Project head Francis Collins that attempts to demonstrate a harmony between science and evangelical Christianity.
Sam Harris says: "Francis Collins—physical chemist, medical geneticist and head of the Human Genome Project—has written a book entitled The Language of God. In it, he attempts to demonstrate that there is “a consistent and profoundly satisfying harmony” between 21st-century science and evangelical Christianity. To say that he fails at his task does not quite get at the inadequacy of his efforts. He fails the way a surgeon would fail if he attempted to operate using only his toes. His failure is predictable, spectacular and vile. The Language of God reads like a hoax text, and the knowledge that it is not a hoax should be disturbing to anyone who cares about the future of intellectual and political discourse in the United States."
I found the book slightly weak from the perspective of apologetics, but every believer will have his preferred reason(s) for faith, whether cosmological, moral, anthropological (eg René Girard), philosophical or historical, and I have personally never been as swayed by the 'moral law' argument as by the other arguments.
"No, this God, if I was perceiving him at all, must be a theist God, who desires some kind of relationship with those special creatures called human beings, and has therefore instilled this special glimpse of Himself into each one of us."
..and no, I don't believe God exists, but that's besides the point.