THE DAWKINS DELUSION

By all means let's be open-minded, but not so open-minded that our brains drop out.

-- Richard Dawkins

Despite great advances in the fields of science and technology, the human race seems to be paradoxically predisposed to unwavering belief in illogical, unverifiable and destructive superstitions. Most self-confessed 'rational' human beings will balk at the idea of witches and voodoo curses, of Zeus with his lightning bolts and Thor with his mighty hammer, but at the same time and in the same breath will assert the reality and continuing presence of a creative force of uncanny intelligence and inexplicable moral wisdom – for whose existence there isn't even the slightest shred of scientific evidence. This essay will attempt to put this self-destructive and absurd superstition to rest once and for all, and to demonstrate that a truly scientific mind must eliminate these counter-intuitive contrivances if we are to ever progress as a society. I will prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that there is not now, nor has there ever been, a Richard Dawkins.


"Imagine." It was a simple proposition that John Lennon invited the world to embrace. A dangerous proposition. Embroiled as our species is in violence and horror, war and catastrophe, Lennon asked us simply to imagine what the world would be like without our fickle grievances. I'd like you to think about that for a moment. Imagine, with John Lennon, a world without Richard Dawkins. Imagine no suicide bombers, no 9/11, no Crusades, no witch-hunts, no Indian partition, no Holocaust. Recently a local newspaper ran a brilliant advertisement in support of the anti-Dawkins campaign – it showed a picture of the Manhattan skyline beneath the caption "Imagine a world without Richard Dawkins". What was the connection? The twin towers of the World Trade Centre were conspicuously present.

Think of all the great war leaders of the past century, even just the past decade, those who have led tens of thousands of people to their deaths in war and conflict. George Bush, Saddam Hussein, Osama bin Laden, Tony Blair, Slobodan Molosovic, Richard Nixon. Think of all the serial killers, the rapists, the murderers, the pedophiles and child-killers. What is it that all these people have in common? Very little, besides the solitary inescapable fact that every single one of them believes in the existence of a man named Richard Dawkins. Don't believe me? I invite you to ask them. Not one of them will deny it. Many of them will even give you a confused glance for the fact that you even asked, as though the answer is entirely obvious. You will not find a single person in any prison in the world, at the helm of any nation or in the lead of any army, who openly denies the existence of Richard Dawkins. Most won't even entertain the idea. The chances of this all being a coincidence are statistically astronomical. Much, much more likely is the hypothesis that believing in the existence of Richard Dawkins drives people into a frenzy of bloodlust, and in the case of rapists, the regular kind of lust also.


To escape this suicidal addiction to murder and conflict, we must remove this ridiculous notion that there is or ever has been a Richard Dawkins. This essay will be the first step toward that goal. Using the incontrovertible powers of science and logic, I will first systematically demolish every popular argument for the existence of Richard Dawkins, and then conclude with the theorem that will represent the final bullet in the skull of Dawkinsism. My hope is that any person who believes in the existence of Richard Dawkins will come out of this essay a staunch Adawkinsist.


The Argument From Scripture


One of the most convincing 'proofs' of the existence of Richard Dawkins is also one of the greatest fallacies. Many people are still convinced by the scriptural evidence for Dawkins' existence. A common argument is that there is are a number of books that are widely claimed to have been written by Richard Dawkins, they are written from the point of view of Richard Dawkins, and we can only assume that, barring some kind of conspiracy, nobody has reason to believe that they were written by anyone but Richard Dawkins. The fallacy is that we can whittle the argument down into three possibilities – that the author of these books is enough of a dick that he'd deliberately mislead us, that he's completely insane, or that he really is Richard Dawkins - the so-called "Dick, Daft or Dawkins" defense. This ultimatum is ludicrously inadequate when you consider the fourth possibility, almost too obvious to need mentioning, that the author is simply honestly mistaken.

In any event, the fact that something is written down is persuasive only to people not used to asking questions about what they read, and these people undoubtedly won't go very far in life. Why should we blindly accept that Richard Dawkins is the author of these books, simply because his name is on the cover? This is circular reasoning, "Dawkins exists because his books say so, and the books are true because Dawkins is no liar." We find ourselves in quite a quagmire of infinite gullibility if we follow this logic to its ultimate conclusion. Can we assume that any book written from the point of view of a character is indisputably the unblemished account of a real person's genuine experiences? Does Lemony Snicket really exist? Richard Bachman? Hitler?

It is simply unreasonable to expect us to believe in the existence of anything without hard scientific evidence, especially something as complex as Richard Dawkins. We don't believe, for example, in other fictional literary characters. We don't believe in Hannibal Lecter, or Hercules, or Charlie Brown, or Harry Potter, or Santa Claus, or the Flying Spaghetti Dawkins. We are all disbelievers in regard to these and countless other whimsical creations. Some of us simply choose to go one further and include Richard Dawkins in this pantheon of fictions.



Flying Spaghetti Dawkins touches you with his noodly appendage, or whatever the equivalent of noodles is in Britain.


The Argument From Personal 'Experience'


Many people claim to have seen Richard Dawkins with their own eyes. They purport to have seen interviews with him on television or in live forums. Some even claim to have spoken to him or shaken his hand. This argument from personal experience is the one that is most convincing to those who claim to have had one. But it is the least convincing to anyone else, and anyone knowledgeable about psychology.

You say you have experienced Richard Dawkins directly? Well, some people have experienced a pink elephant, but that probably doesn't impress you. Individuals in asylums think they are Charlie Chaplin or Napoleon. We humour them but we don't take their internally revealed beliefs seriously. The brain is an incredibly complex piece if machinery, and it's inaccurate to presume that what your eyes see or what any of your other senses perceive is exactly the nature of reality. It's only your brain's interpretation of reality, an interpretation that does occasionally get it wrong.

Sometimes our senses provide an extremely vivid, uncannily believable picture of something that is nevertheless a hallucination. You might have heard someone swear that they saw Richard Dawkins only yesterday, walking out of a shopping centre with a bag of Earl Grey and monocles, delivering a sermon to a mailman about the awesomeness of Charles Darwin. But what is really more likely? That an entity as complex as Richard Dawkins sprang from such a cesspool of inbreeding as the British Isles? Or that our incredibly complex minds created an extremely convincing but nevertheless simple illusion of Richard Dawkins? After all, thousands of people would swear on their lives that they have seen Elvis Presley, alive and well, working at a local supermarket or porn shop. If we want badly enough to believe something, our minds are very good at fabricating evidence to justify those beliefs, and there are thousands upon thousands of college socialists who want very, very badly for Richard Dawkins to be real.

We can not simply believe in anyone's account of the existence of anything, even if those who believe compose the vast majority of humanity. We must be presented with hard evidence of the existence of Richard Dawkins, empirical by the standards of science. Even that will never happen, because an illusion of Richard Dawkins, no matter how realistic, is nevertheless a less complex entity than a real, flesh-and-blood Dawkins, and therefore more probable by far. It is much easier to create a mental hallucination of Dawkins than it is to manifest an actual Dawkins of physical matter.

Therefore we must assume that any supposed first-hand account of Dawkins' existence, even if the same account is shared by hundreds or even thousands of people, it must be nothing but a case of mass delusion driven by a fervent desire for Dawkins to be real. We think we need Dawkins to fill some kind of gap in our lives, to answer questions that seem to demand him. After I present the following evidence, however, you will understand conclusively that Dawkins' existence is not required to explain the literature and works society attributes to him – that, in fact, the existence of Dawkins' books actually prohibit his existence, as per the doctrine of natural selection.


Sorry, Dick. Science debunks you.


Why there almost certainly is no Richard Dawkins


Many people use the 'logic' of progression of origin to justify their belief in Richard Dawkins, but a cursory examination of this argument will reveal that the existence of Dawkins is entirely unnecessary to explain anything at all. The argument goes that since there exist a series of books, we can reasonably assume they were composed by a greater intelligence. But this is a thoroughly unsatisfying and ultimately futile argument to make, and in fact it does more to damage the Dawkins hypothesis than to justify it, for we must then go on to ask the question that if Dawkins made the books, who made Dawkins? We become trapped in a puzzle of infinite progression from which there is no logical escape.

Just because books appear to be designed, it doesn't follow logically that they have been, because the complexity of the supposed designer, Dawkins, must be much greater than that of the book that he composed. The laws of natural selection show us that anything complex comes about through a slow, tedious progression of evolution over many years from much simpler origins. We could believe that Richard Dawkins composed these books, but it's much more probable scientifically to presume that the books evolved from a bunch of smaller, less eloquent writings over a period of centuries.

Natural selection provides an entirely more credible hypothesis than that of the Dawkins delusion – that dozens of other books of a similar subject matter, Voltaires, Darwins and Russells, after centuries of being mishandled in library warehouses, eventually got mixed up and pasted back together into the configuration we now attribute to Richard Dawkins. This hypothesis raises much fewer questions than are demanded by the invocation of an entirely new entity in Richard Dawkins, who supposedly blinked these books into existence from nothing.

I am continually astonished by those Dawkinsists who stubbournly assert that this evolution of ideas may be "Dawkins' way of achieving his creation" – that Dawkins actually took ideas from these other books and refined them into a series of books of his own. They note that research and study, quotations and references, would be a very neat and easy way for Dawkins to create a book about a scientific principle. The ideas are all there already – why, Dawkins would barely have to do anything at all! In fact, with today's technology, computers and wordprocessing and Google search, books can just about write themselves! From this we can postulate a lazy Dawkins, superfluous, unoccupied, useless, whose expended effort can be reduced to the point where he doesn't actually need to do anything at all: he might as well not bother to exist.

Though it seems absurd that a book so eloquent as those we attribute to Dawkins could have come about through a random shuffling of papers, one needs only to cite the anthropic principle – basically, no matter how unlikely the probability that the book could exist, it does exist, and therefore conditions must be right for it to have come into existence. Certainly it is infinitely more probable that the outcome of such a random shuffling would create an incomprehensible pile of garbled schizophrenic nonsense, like a Michael Moore documentary. But if that had happened, we wouldn't be having this discussion. Since we are, we can only conclude that by whatever twist of fate, the pages came together in precisely the right order as to create the illusion that they were composed by an author. This principle removes the necessity of a creating force from the equation, through the simple observation that things are the way they are because they are, and if they weren't, then they wouldn't be.


Look at all the sheep, sharing a joke with their imaginary friend. Baa! Baaaa!


Natural selection teaches us that complex structures can not spring into existence by themselves. But many die-hard Dawkinsists latch onto the concept of 'irreducible complexity', the theory that a book as complex as those we ascribe to Dawkins could never have existed in a simpler form than it now does. This is a fallacy that we can blow out of the water with a little bit of investigation. The God Delusion is a conglomerate of many different chapters composed of many different discussions and arguments that operate perfectly well on their own merit. It's perfectly reasonable to assume that a book of ten tangentially-related chapters, composed in turn of fifty-five subchapters plus appendices, each with their own individual subject and purpose, could have evolved from fifty or more individual stand-alone manuscripts, none of which require the existence of an author, as they all could have been shuffled together from dozens of even smaller paragraphs, stanzas and point-counter-points that all make sense on their own merit. These, in turn, are composed of sentences, which are composed of words, and all of these individual components make sense on their own. Each word is composed of a different combination of only twenty-six letters.

We can therefore infer scientifically that it was language itself that composed these works through a very long and slow process of random letter-shuffling that built in complexity over millennia. Combinations of letters that don't make sense, such as 'kmhrfroolgnshif' are not suited to their environment, and thus perish in favour of combinations that create actual words. Therefore, after a painstaking process of small alterations and adaptations, accumulated over time, we see how it's more probable that complex books evolve on their own from less complex fragments, than the near infinite improbability that they were all written in one go by some complex entity we call Dawkins, and the infinite progression trap that this leads us into.

As you can see, the human tendency toward an unquestioning belief in the improbable and whimsical products of our endless imaginations can only hold us back in the progression of scientific discovery. It is essential that we question the cultural axioms of Dawkinsism, and stand tall and united in our logical enlightenment. You have been fooled into believing in the existence of Richard Dawkins. Unshackle your minds, and be free.

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