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Show Me The Dirt Pile

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Dawkins admits he shares an affinity with religious fundamentalists; they share the same enterprise. What he admires in fundamentalism is roughly this: while their contentions may lack "evidence" in the strictly empirical sense of the word, while Dawkins has nothing but disdain for what he deems childish fantasies of the "supernatural," he respects that they are making objective truth claims about the world, and herein is the common ground between them. Whatever disdain he has for religious fundamentalists, he despises all the more the persons (perhaps more so their ideas) accused of propagating what has at varying times been referenced "postmodern subjectivism" or "epistemic obfuscationism," etc, etc, in short the general idea that truth is relative: to conceptual schemes, to history and culture, to context, and that whatever "knowledge" we have, it is always permeated in some sense by those cognitive and existential activies that seek to assent to "the world." As Rorty argues, the very notion of "objective truth" is a non-starter, it's not even a meaningful notion... as davidm has pointed out: consciousness is always already bound up with the world.

Now, it seems clear that in the case of Dawkins, yes, his affinity is grounded in the bare fact (as per many of his writings external to biology) that he's a fundamentalist without God, certainly this seems an increasing phenomenon: entire armies of the intellectually and emotionally lazy, whole swaths of indolent pigs rallying behind the banner of atheism firstly, generally some brand of social humanism secondly. Nothing against atheism; it's not the problem, not the source of concern, as I see things, it's the road leading there and that which furthers its continued affirmation. (generally a presupposed, shoddy "scientific realism" or methodological naturalism).

This is an interesting phenomenon to me: the process in which philosophic/religious/metaphysical foundations shift or collapse. Consider: forty years ago, it was deemed a reductio ad absurdum that a strict negative utilitarianism mandates the destruction of the world; persons judged, as people (even philosophers) will reject a theory before their, in this case, moral intuitions, before rejecting their intuitions in light of a metaethical/normative theory... in short, negative utilitarianism was casted aside. But a new breed of person is emerging: the antinatalists of today readily argue, even gleefully argue, that we should collectively stop breeding and die out as a species or welcome the literal end of the world. What the fuck happened?

The context in which the ills of the world, the sufferings one endures in living life, can be rendered meaningful, teleological, part of some purpose external to finite evolved monkeys merely looking for excuses to go on with their miserable existence, has collapsed. Even the theists of today are atheists. What I do despise is when persons pretend that nothing has happened. How sickeningly puerile to live in such a way. Moral reality is delegated to the sphere of "subjective preference" and yet so many of the secular atheists of the day go on with morally mandating. There is no "ought" but everyone "ought" to have access to medical care; moral nihilism... but I'm going to go on double taking and act like it's unethical to give false pretenses for war. Disgusting.

Now, "nihilism" itself, if on a mass scale persons experienced it an existentially tolerable position, may indeed not be the problem; ideologues are always causing the most trouble, but the problem is that, and this has been commented on across the board, (Richard M Weaver, Leo Strauss, Robert Nisbet, and especially Eric Voegelin) nihilism (axiological) paves the way for ideology to fill the void.

I think when people (not you, dear reader, the masses) slowly come to realize the nihilistic world absent God, absent moral reality, absent transcendent purpose, when that "long shadow" Nietzsche spoke of finally retreats out of existence, the only thing therafter revealed will be a world in ruins.

Edited by DeadCanDance
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Got bad news.

After hundreds of years evicting intentionality from the world, science is now encroaching upon the human. The entire field of humanities is about to undergo a mass extinction, or at least radically metamorphosed by the discoveries of neuroscience and related fields.

This is the beginning of the last stage of nihilism, or "semantic apocalypse" (coined by Robert Bakker). This takes place once meaning & cognition, experience & knowledge, split asunder permanently, and a far-reaching cultural bifurcation in which power treats every individual as mere cogs in a gigantic system of culture that only continues to feed the beast - our desire for phony autonomy and meaning. Cognitive difference will be essentially the great cultural divide between those who hope & serve, and those who know & command.

Nietzsche said that ever since Copernicus, "man has been rolling from the center towards X."

We think we know where we're going, because of course, we hate going backwards, and therefore this "X" where we're headed towards, could be the ultimate test of humanity. This X could very well be a sinkhole.

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