Sunday, February 02, 2014

Peter Boghossian sees through everybody.

I've almost given up blogging, since I'm now in China, which seems to have an inexplicable grudge against amiable American web sites, that one included.  But I did happen to notice that Randall Rauser and Tom Gilson have both  been posting on Peter Boghossian, the veritable reincarnation of Socrates in Gnu form, lately.  Readers may have seen my account here of what happened when I challenged Peter to debate long before his book came out, "Peter Boghossian sees through me."  Apparently he's seen through these other guys, too!  He has apparently refused to debate either of them publicly, Rauser on the Unforgettable show that I have also appeared on in the past, on the grounds that he is not a real scholar, or something. 

Good on Peter.  Those of us whose vision has lessened as we grow older, can only feel profound respect for those who gain such powers as the ability to see thoughts over thousands of miles through inches of thick (and in my case, thickening) cranial tissue, and discern the true quality of scholarship they have never read, from otherwise apparently respectable institutions.  (I would be satisfied with a much lesser superpower, like reading two books at the same time with two different eyes.)

Which brings us to Randal's recent post, which made unfortunate light of the esteemed sage (I mean the contemporary one) by comparing him to comic book knights.  I have to say, I think that's all wrong, unnecessary, and even rather mean of our friend Randal.  The real comparison is to a Jedi Knight.  Like the Jedi, Dr. Boghossian knows that he understands Christianity most clearly with a blindfold over his eyes.  This is one of those cases in which perception of the evidence, say by physically reading what Christians say about faith, for instance, would merely distract someone with Jedi powers from what he knows, with unassailable certainty, from serendipitous truth internally mediated, about that pernicious superstition. 

And this is, let me add, a great advantage that Gnu scholars like Boghossian hold over primitive sages like Socrates.  Socrates seemed, poor fellow, to ask people questions because he wanted to know the answers, because he recognized his own ignorance and sought to ameliorate it.  That is hardly any better than asking the way to the train station because you are lost!  Whereas Boghossian asks questions because he knows the vast majority of humanity consists of deluded fools, and he seeks to enlighten them about their foolishness, and offer the Good News that God does not love them, after all.  To me, that is the position a true sage must take.  And here lies  the difference between Randal or I or our readers and a real scholar, like Peter Boghossian: you had to read this post to find out what I think, whereas Dr. Boghossian knows already, without opening his computer, that the likes of you and I hardly engage in anything that can be called "thought" at all.  I have no idea what Justin was thinking, inviting Rauser on with the likes of Peter Boghossian.  Of course, I'm sure Peter knows.