Friday, 1 February 2013

Dawkins: 21st Century Boy

If I may, Professor Dawkins, may I suggest that what is best about what makes us human is our capacity to be heroic in self-sacrifice, our capacity to pray, our capacity to love, our capacity to forgive, our capacity to be tender, to be compassionate, our capacity to be humble.

To assert that the intellect is what makes us human would be to implicitly deny humanity to the unintelligent, or simple-minded. Those remembered by the Royal Society are remembered for their intellect and scientific achievements. Those fondly remembered by the rest of society are remembered for their great love and virtue or even just for themselves.

To assert that is it primarily the intellect which makes us human is a betrayal of what makes us human. St Thomas Aquinas was a very clever man, but I really doubt very much that he would assert that it is the intellect that makes us human. For just as men of great intellect brought us astounding works of scientific discovery, so did men of great intellect bring us the atomic bomb, cluster bombs and gas chambers.

When intellect dispenses itself of love or mercy, it no longer serves a good purpose, but a potentially very evil one indeed. A great intellect can bring either great wisdom to a society, or it can deem, untempered by love, uninhibited by the moral law, humanity itself to be irrelevant.

 It is the very same logic that you display, sir, that leads the homeless to be abandoned in the gutter, human embryos to be medically experimented upon, the buckets of the elderly to be kicked for them by the NHS and down syndrome babies to be aborted for their condition. The Church, as far as I know, has no problem with scientific discovery. The Church does have a problem with a brand of science with no heart.

Now, ain't that a fact! But with all that said and done.

These things are amazing...

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