RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Part 149H Sir Bertrand Russell

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Image result for bertrand russell

On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said:

…Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975

and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them.

Harry Kroto

Image result for harry kroto

I have attempted to respond to all of Dr. Kroto’s friends arguments and I have posted my responses one per week for over a year now. Here are some of my earlier posts:

Arif Ahmed, Sir David AttenboroughMark Balaguer, Horace Barlow, Michael BatePatricia ChurchlandAaron CiechanoverNoam Chomsky,Alan DershowitzHubert Dreyfus, Bart Ehrman, Stephan FeuchtwangDavid Friend,  Riccardo GiacconiIvar Giaever , Roy GlauberRebecca GoldsteinDavid J. Gross,  Brian Greene, Susan GreenfieldStephen F Gudeman,  Alan Guth, Jonathan HaidtTheodor W. Hänsch, Brian Harrison,  Hermann HauserRoald Hoffmann,  Bruce HoodHerbert Huppert,  Gareth Stedman Jones, Steve JonesShelly KaganMichio Kaku,  Stuart Kauffman,  Lawrence KraussHarry Kroto, George LakoffElizabeth Loftus,  Alan MacfarlanePeter MillicanMarvin MinskyLeonard Mlodinow,  Yujin NagasawaAlva NoeDouglas Osheroff,  Jonathan Parry,  Saul PerlmutterHerman Philipse,  Carolyn PorcoRobert M. PriceLisa RandallLord Martin Rees,  Oliver Sacks, John SearleMarcus du SautoySimon SchafferJ. L. Schellenberg,   Lee Silver Peter Singer,  Walter Sinnott-ArmstrongRonald de Sousa, Victor StengerBarry Supple,   Leonard Susskind, Raymond TallisNeil deGrasse Tyson,  .Alexander Vilenkin, Sir John WalkerFrank WilczekSteven Weinberg, and  Lewis Wolpert,

Bertrand Arthur William Russell, 3rd Earl Russell, OM, FRS, was a Welsh philosopher, historian, logician, mathematician, advocate for social reform, pacifist, and prominent rationalist. Although he was usually regarded as English, as he spent the majority of his life in England, he was born in Wales, where he also died.

He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1950 “in recognition of his varied and significant writings in which he champions humanitarian ideals and freedom of thought.”

In  the first video below in the 14th clip in this series are his words and I will be responding to them in the next few weeks since Sir Bertrand Russell is probably the most quoted skeptic of our time, unless it was someone like Carl Sagan or Antony Flew.  

50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1)

Another 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 2)

A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)

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Quote from Bertrand Russell:

Q: Why are you not a Christian?

Russell: Because I see no evidence whatever for any of the Christian dogmas. I’ve examined all the stock arguments in favor of the existence of God, and none of them seem to me to be logically valid.

Q: Do you think there’s a practical reason for having a religious belief, for many people?

Russell: Well, there can’t be a practical reason for believing what isn’t true. That’s quite… at least, I rule it out as impossible. Either the thing is true, or it isn’t. If it is true, you should believe it, and if it isn’t, you shouldn’t. And if you can’t find out whether it’s true or whether it isn’t, you should suspend judgment. But you can’t… it seems to me a fundamental dishonesty and a fundamental treachery to intellectual integrity to hold a belief because you think it’s useful, and not because you think it’s true.

Bertrand Russell as a child

Image result for bertrand russell

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Kill some wolves before you die: A review of “The Grey” (Part 2)

Warning: Spoiler(s) ahead. (Not really bad spoilers as would be the case if I told you that Dr. Malcolm Crowe (Bruce Willis) in “The Sixth Sense” is really a ghost who doesn’t know he’s a ghost. That’d be a wicked spoiler. The “spoilers” here are really nothing more than the untimely revelation of plot points.)

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According to Wikipedia, “Promotion for The Grey, in part, targeted Christian groups by issuing a “film companion”, which highlighted the spiritual value of the film.” This really surprised me because the film is fundamentally anti-Christian. (I don’t mean that the way a Marilyn Manson album is anti-Christian but rather the way any work of art presenting a worldview fundamentally incompatible with the Christian worldview is anti-Christian.) Intrigued, I followed the link to the original article in “Variety”. Sure enough, the article states: “Open Road [the distributor] said it used several cross-promotional strategies to market the pic to Christian and various ethnic groups.” Go figure. To be sure, even if it is anti-Christian (or unChristian) in outlook, I do think that this film would be much more rewarding viewing for a church group than “Fireproof”. Let’s just hope that Granny has nodded off to sleep by the time that Ottway (Liam Neeson) unloads a truckload of four-letter invective at the Almighty near the end of the film.

So how is the worldview of the film “anti-Christian”?

The film, it seems to me, is a sort of allegory. It begins on an oil rig in the wilds of Northern Alaska. I take this rig to be representative of human civilization. This is not surprising since the harnessing of energy is core to the development of civilization. The harsh climate of Northern Alaska places into broad relief the precarious nature of our civilization. In that respect “The Grey” is orders more subtle and intriguing in depicting the human situation than a Hollywood mega-budget snooze-fest like “The Day After Tomorrow” with its wanna-be iconic Statue of Liberty arm jutting out of the ice.

It is easy to hold the delusion that our civilization is secure, and that is true of the oil workers as well. They are brought back to reality in a horrific moment when the plane they are riding to Anchorage takes a nose dive in the best airplane crash scene since “Castaway”. This really is a great sequence.

It is crucial to understand Ottway’s role in all this. To do so we must pay attention to a crucial moment on the airplane prior to the crash. At one point one of the characters makes a reference to Timothy Treadwell (though not by name) and the documentary about him, “Grizzly Man.” Some years ago Treadwell left southern California in search of meaning and went to Alaska to live with the Kodiak bears. He filmed them (and himself) for hours. He found meaning for his life in the bears. He thought they were his friends. He loved them. Then one of them ate him (off camera but with camera still rolling). The masterful documentarian Werner Herzog compiled some of this footage (mercifully not the horrific death, though he brilliantly incorporates it into the film just the same) into the documentary “Grizzly Man”.

Anyway, “The Grey” is presenting us with a clear contrast. Treadwell naively projected meaning onto the bears of Alaska and was destroyed by them. Ottway is not that foolish. He recognizes that the wolves he is linked with are cold predators. It is a struggle for survival, pure and simple. And yet, as the film ultimately reveals, there may not be much difference. Treadwell’s delusion leads him to be destroyed by the bears. But Ottway’s gritty realism still leads him to be killed by the wolves. Either way both end up dead.

“The Grey” depicts a ragtag group escaping the wreckage of the plane hopefully away from the lair of the wolves that are hunting them and toward civilization. In fact, the journey leads them directly into the lair of the wolves and to their inevitable destruction. One by one, the brutishness of nature and human mortality, as represented by the wolves in their tireless pursuit, takes down each of the men until only Ottway is left.

This brings us to the point where I hope Grandma is asleep. However, I suspect that the unrelenting blitzkrieg of f-bombs throughout the film would have emptied the room of the faint of heart long before that point. (How do you think oil rig workers would talk?) If Grandma is still there by that point she will see Ottway look up to the grey skies and cry out to God for help with an explosive, expletive-laced tirade. Predictably there is no answer, unless you call the revelation a shortwhile later that Ottway is about to die in a flurry of teeth and fur an answer.

In the final scene Ottway squares off against the Alpha wolf surrounded by a snarling pack of beasts. Methodically he smashes tiny liquor bottles and tapes the jagged edges to his fists. (Who needs brass knuckles when you’ve got glass knuckles?!) Ottway is the ultimate promethean figure, one who refuses to accept his inevitable fate without a fight. As the credits suddenly appear we realize that Ottway’s final demise, like that of Treadwell, was kept off camera. Perhaps looking the other way is the last dignity we can pay the man.

Regardless, as the credits began to role up the screen I couldn’t help but think of this famous passage from Bertrand Russell:

all the labours of the ages, all the devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday brightness of human genius, are destined to extinction in the vast death of the solar system, and that the whole temple of Man’s achievement must inevitably be buried beneath the debris of a universe in ruins—all these things, if not quite beyond dispute, are yet so nearly certain, that no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair can the soul’s habitation be safely built.

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Francis Schaeffer noted, “B.F.Skinner (like Bertrand Russell and George Wald) retains only the value of biological   continuity. “Survival is the only value according to which a culture is eventually to be judged, and any practice that furthers survival has survival value by definition.” (page 230 of Vol 5 of Complete Works, part of HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE?).

Image result for francis schaeffer

Above Bertrand Russell said he rejected Christianity “Because I see no evidence whatsoever” indicating that Christianity is true. I wish he had considered the following:
Francis Schaeffer noted in the book THE GOD WHO IS THERE:
Firstly, these are space-time
proofs in written form, and consequently
capable of careful consideration. Then,
secondly, these proofs are of such a
nature as to give good· and sufficient
evidence that Christ is the Messiah as
prophesied in the Old Testament, and
also that he is the Son of God. So that,
thirdly, we are not asked to believe until
we have faced the question as to whether
this is true on the basis of the space-time evidence. 
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Schaeffer then points to the historical accuracy of the Bible in Chapter 5 of the book WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?

The Bible and Archaeology – Is the Bible from God? (Kyle Butt 42 min)

You want some evidence that indicates that the Bible is true? Here is a good place to start and that is taking a closer look at the archaeology of the Old Testament times. Is the Bible historically accurate? Here are some of the posts I have done in the past on the subject: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)4. Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically. 5. The Discovery of the Hittites6.Shishak Smiting His Captives7. Moabite Stone8Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III9A Verification of places in Gospel of John and Book of Acts., 9B Discovery of Ebla Tablets10. Cyrus Cylinder11. Puru “The lot of Yahali” 9th Century B.C.E.12. The Uzziah Tablet Inscription13. The Pilate Inscription14. Caiaphas Ossuary14 B Pontius Pilate Part 214c. Three greatest American Archaeologists moved to accept Bible’s accuracy through archaeology.

Related posts:

 

RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Pausing to take a look at the life of HARRY KROTO Part C (Kroto’s admiration of Bertrand Russell examined)

Today we look at the 3rd letter in the Kroto correspondence and his admiration of Bertrand Russell. (Below The Nobel chemistry laureates Harold Kroto, Robert Curl and Richard Smalley) It is with sadness that I write this post having learned of the death of Sir Harold Kroto on April 30, 2016 at the age of […]

RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Part 52 The views of Hegel and Bertrand Russell influenced Gareth Stedman Jones of Cambridge!!

On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said: …Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975 and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them. Harry Kroto _________________ Below you have picture of Dr. Harry Kroto:   Gareth Stedman […]

WOODY WEDNESDAY John Piippo makes the case that Bertrand Russell would have loved Woody Allen because they both were atheists who don’t deny the ramifications of atheism!!!

Top 10 Woody Allen Movies __________ John Piippo makes the case that Bertrand Russell would have loved Woody Allen because they both were  atheists who don’t deny the ramifications of atheism!!! Monday, August 06, 2012 (More On) Woody Allen’s Atheism As I wrote in a previous post, I like Woody Allen. I have long admired his […]

John Piippo makes the case that Bertrand Russell would have loved Woody Allen because they both were two atheists who don’t deny the ramifications of atheism!!!

______ Top 10 Woody Allen Movies PBS American Masters – Woody Allen A Documentary 01 PBS American Masters – Woody Allen A Documentary 02 __________ John Piippo makes the case that Bertrand Russell would have loved Woody Allen because they both were two atheists who don’t deny the ramifications of atheism!!! Monday, August 06, 2012 […]

Bertrand Russell v. Frederick Copleston debate transcript (Part 4)

THE MORAL ARGUMENT     BERTRAND RUSSELL But aren’t you now saying in effect, I mean by God whatever is good or the sum total of what is good — the system of what is good, and, therefore, when a young man loves anything that is good he is loving God. Is that what you’re […]

Bertrand Russell v. Frederick Copleston debate transcript (Part 3)

Great debate Fr. Frederick C. Copleston vs Bertrand Russell – Part 1 Uploaded by riversonthemoon on Jul 15, 2009 BBC Radio Third Programme Recording January 28, 1948. BBC Recording number T7324W. This is an excerpt from the full broadcast from cassette tape A303/5 Open University Course, Problems of Philosophy Units 7-8. Older than 50 years, […]

Bertrand Russell v. Frederick Copleston debate transcript and audio (Part 2)

Uploaded by riversonthemoon on Jul 15, 2009 BBC Radio Third Programme Recording January 28, 1948. BBC Recording number T7324W. This is an excerpt from the full broadcast from cassette tape A303/5 Open University Course, Problems of Philosophy Units 7-8. Older than 50 years, out of UK/BBC copyright. Pardon the hissy audio. It was recorded 51 […]

Bertrand Russell v. Frederick Copleston debate transcript and audio (Part 1)

Fr. Frederick C. Copleston vs Bertrand Russell – Part 1 Uploaded by riversonthemoon on Jul 15, 2009 BBC Radio Third Programme Recording January 28, 1948. BBC Recording number T7324W. This is an excerpt from the full broadcast from cassette tape A303/5 Open University Course, Problems of Philosophy Units 7-8. Older than 50 years, out of […]

Bertrand Russell v. Frederick Copleston debate transcript (Part 4)

THE MORAL ARGUMENT     BERTRAND RUSSELL But aren’t you now saying in effect, I mean by God whatever is good or the sum total of what is good — the system of what is good, and, therefore, when a young man loves anything that is good he is loving God. Is that what you’re […]

Bertrand Russell v. Frederick Copleston debate transcript (Part 3)

Fr. Frederick C. Copleston vs Bertrand Russell – Part 1 Uploaded by riversonthemoon on Jul 15, 2009 BBC Radio Third Programme Recording January 28, 1948. BBC Recording number T7324W. This is an excerpt from the full broadcast from cassette tape A303/5 Open University Course, Problems of Philosophy Units 7-8. Older than 50 years, out of […]

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Comments

  • Beema Noel  On January 23, 2018 at 7:08 pm

    Wow! Very Impressive Post from the beginning! I hope to get through it before I die! I was thinking as I listened to the first video; “God’s Playing the piano”. Thinking too; “God, and this post, must be ineffable, infinite, occult; like the eternal fullness of space”. Leaves me wondering; May this universe be like a bubble in my Infinite God’s effervescent drink?

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