In a nutshell, Father Carr has decided to rant against the Blasphemy Challenge but obviously has not been guided by his invisible friend as he does so. As a result, he not only misses the point about the challenge, but seems to get a bit confused over the whole issue of belief and what the Christian church teaches (or at least did when I went to school). Friendly Atheist has done an excellent job of fisking the (ahem) article so I wont do that here, but there are a couple of points I want to pick up on.
Fr Carr shows his lack of understanding about both logic and atheism with this witty remark:
Further, a true atheist would never condemn his soul to Hell. Why? Because to condemn oneâ€™s soul to Hell is to acknowledge that Hell exists and a true atheist would never do that.
Now, after you get over the headache caused by trying to extract some sense from this tortured line of reasoning, you see there is none. I mean, it starts with “a true atheist would never condemn his soul to hell.” What does that even mean. Would a true Christian condemn his banana-essence to Shiva? I true atheist (what does that even mean?) cant condemn his soul to hell, but he can commit acts which a believer of [Insert Imaginary Person of Choice] would think resulted in eternity in [insert punishment of choice]. The father is correct with the last part, but he fails to realise that the “true atheist” is not condemning his soul to hell, he (or she) is simply saying something which is as meaningless as a Catholic priest saying “Banana Jet Fuel.”
What really scares me about this Blasphemy Challenge is the case of the person who decides that if he is going to Hell for all eternity, or will cease to exist, why not go bring that result now and then attempts suicide.
Now this confuses me. First off, this person is certainly not an atheist. Secondly, any one who followed this line of reasoning is probably suicidal at the best of times. If this hypothetical person was an atheist, they would not be worried about going to a place which does not exist. If the person is a Christian then they know that they can be forgive if they repent. Is this an example of the father creating a false conflict?
Well, it certainly wouldn’t be the first time members of the church (however high their status may be) have had to resort to nonsense, woo and logical fallacies to get their point across. Speaks volumes for the validity of their points though…
Anyway, get over to Friendly Atheist if you want to read a better, more thorough, debunking.
[tags]blasphemy-challenge, blasphemy, catholicism, catholic-church, anti-atheist, atheist, atheism, religion, religious nonsense, woo, Philosophy, society, culture, logical fallacies, christian, church, RRS, rational-response-squad, Logic, religious nutter[/tags]