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Monday, May 13, 2013

A Famous Atheist Who changed His Mind


Let's see what some Christian philosophers had to say about faith. I.M. Crombie wrote that theists, in order to express their belief, are bounded to use paradoxical statements. Some trust their cognitive faculties when they affirm the existence of God. For them, He is real and abstract at the same time, like memory. For others, He is something to speculate about. 
As we can read in There Is a God, Anthony Flew, the founder of the new atheists “movement,” speculated long enough to change his mind about God. According to him, the fact that nature obeys laws points directly to God, as it does the fact that we are conscious, purpose driven beings. We are the product of billions of years of cumulative selection, or evolution, but this can’t in any way explain consciousness. We have the capacity of thinking in concepts and we are conscious of our ability to transcend matter, yet our brain is not very different from the one of an animal. We perceive ourselves as “selves,” but we can’t analyze the self because it’s not a mentalstate that can be observed or explained in scientific terms.

The philosopher R.A. Varghese writes that science does not discover the self but the self discovers science, therefore  no account of the history of the universe is coherent if it cannot explain the existence of the self. He thinks that the supraphisical can only originate in a supraphisical source, and consciousness, thought and the self are supraphisical. Matter cannot produce thought, not even in billion years, and if this is what atheists believe, then theirs is an act of faith even more hazardous than believing in God. 

The professional atheists maintain that the human species needed religion to cope with a mysterious, frightening world. They think that modern science has ended our fears, explaining away all the things that we didn’t understand about nature, therefore religion is destined to die. True, we don’t believe anymore that lightning is the manifestation of angry gods, but our incomprehension has only shifted. Modern science has opened the door for us to unbelievable complexity and to the mystery of the universe. Our position is not that different from the one of men in Jesus‘ time. They looked at the sky, saw the stars and wondered. Today we know stars and planets but we wonder just the same about the universe, how it works, how it came into existence and why. Science still can’t answer our deepest questions.                                                                                                                                     

4 comments:

Manny said...

Here is a whole list of atheists who converted to Christianity:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_converts_to_Christianity_from_nontheism

If you can, you should look up the story from John C. Wright, a science fiction writer who was a strong atheist but had an incredible conversion experience. He summarizes it here:
http://www.scifiwright.com/2011/09/a-question-i-never-tire-of-answering/

Antonella said...

Thank you for the link Manny. Wow! Wright story was truly an outpouring of grace! I sent the link to my son!

Manny said...

Glad you liked it. I hope he liked it too, whether it convinced him or not. Here's another. It's about a guy who famously blogged as the "Raving Atheist" and ultimately converted and now calls his blog the "Raving Theist."

http://www.elizabethesther.com/2010/03/a-conversation-with-former-atheist-blogger-raving-theist.html

and he tells the story himself in this interview:

http://www.ilsussidiario.net/News/English-Spoken-Here/Culture-Religion-Science/2012/6/29/CONVERSION-From-Raving-Atheist-to-Raving-Theist/296965/

Antonella said...

I'm always interested in conversion stories, it's amazing how different they are from each other! Thanks for the links.