Wednesday, November 08, 2006

More on "Where Do You Stand On God?"

I've come to realize that there's an even more serious problem in "The New Atheism" approach to denying a Mythic God (The original post is here) that causes some real damage: The problem is that this new atheism doesn't only deny a mythic God, something that higher levels of spiritual consciousness wouldn't deny, but that this new atheism also denies any sort of spiritual approach altogether.

Quoting Ken Wilber in Integral Spirituality, page 193, while "the religious myths simply are not empirically must move from myth to reason to trans-reason in order to plumb the depths of spiritual realities. That is, one must allow the line of of spiritual intelligence to continue its growth from amber into higher levels, and, conversely, forcing the myths to remain as they are is the surest way to keep mythic believers frozen at that level and slip into a pernicious Level/Line Fallacy."

He continues, "But in order for the higher levels in the spiritual line to be recognized and allowed, the spiritual line itself needs to be recognized and honored."

In other words, because of the New Atheists' refusal to recognize stage/structure states of development, they are also committing a Level/Lines Fallacy, trapping all who might want to reach for higher levels of spirituality at the mythic level. They fail to realize that the human heart senses domains of existence that science can never define, explain, or fill.

Ironically, proponents of Intelligent Design, trying to have science prove mythic-level poetry, makes them guilty of the LLF as well, and they become the unwitting partners of the New Athiests.

Cartoon by Gary Larsen


Tom Mull said...


Simon (Sydney) :-) said...

Hey Gary,
:-) It's only a problem from above orange. I thought Dennett's book in particular (haven't read Harris yet and Dawkins I can imagine) was an excellent appeal from orange to folks who may want a vehicle to move from the supernatural position.
Speaking from my own experience, it's possible to hold that vision of spiritual reality through one's orangidity. Confusing but possible. :-)
I think the crucial message to get across is that it's possible, even desirable, to move to a position where one's spiritual aspects, particularly as they reflect in one's beliefs, are taken as an object of awareness rather than being the subjective be-all-end-all.
I'm never sure whether Dennett actually would deny spiritual experience or whether he's decided that (for him?) it ain't possible to speak thereof and make sense.