POC Blog

The random technotheolosophical blogging of Reid S. Monaghan

A Review of Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon by Daniel C. Dennett

There is a very interesting book review of Daniel Dennett's most recent railings against religion. See 'Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon,' by Daniel C. Dennett - The New York Times Book Review An interesting quote from the conclusion of the review:

Dennett recognizes the uses of faith, but not its reasons. In the end, his repudiation of religion is a repudiation of philosophy, which is also an affair of belief in belief. What this shallow and self-congratulatory book establishes most conclusively is that there are many spells that need to be broken.
Dennett and other naturalists have yet to face the true music of their own imploding idea. What good reason to we have to trust the musings of the meaningless mush of matter between our ears? Naturalism offers no good answer. If our brains are the result of a long, blind, material process, then we have no good reason to think that our thoughts should arrive at anything that is "true" or any real reflection of reality. Now, I am no anti-realist, as I believe our minds, our logic, transcend matter alone and our sense perceptions and rational inferences should be trusted. Not on any naturalistic worldview, but rather on one grounded in metaphysics. For indeed truth exists outside of our selves and ultimate reality, yes even God, casts a beautiful light that makes our knowledge possible. And at times our knowledge is true.

For an interesting exchange on Naturalism - see also my post on The Center for Naturalism