Positive Positions

Readers of Andrew Sullivan make the point I tried to make in my last post much more articulately. But then other readers of his come back to make confounding statements like this one:

You gotta live somewhere, and you gotta believe in something, because your beliefs are being expressed every day in how you live your life. Atheists should be forced to articulate their positive position (say, secular humanism) as price of admission to the conversation.

So before I can point out someone else’s factual and logical error, I have to confess to that person what gives my life meaning? That’s insane.

And then there’s this ridiculousness:

What the defenders of the Flying Spaghetti Monster thesis’ commensurability with actual theism fail to recognize is that belief in God generally doesn’t have anything so “concrete” as its substance. It’s not the particulars of God — the “invisible man in the sky” imagery and such — that matter. In some sense these particulars aren’t the content of theist belief at all; it’s the “consequences” of God — moral compunction, cultural taboo, social phenomena that amount to a de facto eschatology, etc. — that actually constitute theism. And when measured by adherence to behaviors consistent with this belief, atheism suddenly appears much rarer.
Summed in another way: the evidence for God that your last commentator finds lacking is the same kind of evidence which can’t be found to support the existence of morality.

Oh, awesome! The old “you can’t have morality without religion” argument, which denigrates morality as arbitrary while simultaneously offering no actual argument to support the factual claims of religions.

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