Sunday, March 28, 2010

The passion of Richard Dawkins

I watched the documentary "The Root of All Evil?" written and presented by Richard Dawkins. It was originally broadcast as a two part series on Channel 4 in U.K.

The theme is a controversial one to say the least. Professor Dawkins was courageous enough to pick up the religious hot potato. It is not that the views of Dawkins are extreme. What Dawkins says during the 90 minutes of this excellent documentary appear only fair and well-balanced for me.

People say that religion is at the top of the "A-list" of topics to be avoided in the conversation at a dinner table. Some might even argue that it is morally wrong to tamper with other people's beliefs. While the spirit of tolerance is laudable, it also freezes the status quo.

Then there comes someone who dares to go beyond the barriers of faith and make long-due remarks about the emperor's new clothes. Mind you this particular action requires diplomatic tact as well as dare-devil courage. Professor Dawkins is able to continue conversation even with people of very strong religious opinions without making an ugly scene, a remarkable feat in itself.

I admire the passion of Richard Dawkins. The passion comes from a very mature intellect, married with a deep love of the wondrous order of the universe being uncovered by scientific endeavors.

Richard Dawkins


Takuro said...

Dear Dr.Mogi-sensei,

I myself am a Buddhist (at least in spirit), but I enjoyed conversation on religious topics with my former professor who is a Christian.

I do not think that strong belief without conversation is always healthy.

Anonymous said...

Religion and belief are depend on people, the background of the family and the tought.These things are the basis of the moral.I don't conscious of religion in the daily life as a Buddhist, but we need the moral to live together in harmony.

Anonymous said...

I believe there are two issues at hand on this matter. One is that there are certainly those who do not have the intellect and mental and physical health and strength to "independently" confront their desperation and "steadily" live through their 24/7. The other is that the line which divides a sincere act of encouragement and a malicious act of exploitation often tends to be unclear.

Meanwhile, speaking for Japan, I doubt whether Mr. Dawkins' assertion has any relevance given the lack of any true reigning "conservatism" here. In that regard, we may not even consider his views to be "controversial". For me, the lack of "conservatism" is always of critical concern as it directly involves how our "education" system is structured, how the young are brought up, what is available for the young to question and rebel against, how our country is consequently sustained for continued evolution.