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A Devil's Chaplain: Selected Writings

A Devil's Chaplain: Selected Writings

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Language English
Contributor(s) Richard Dawkins
Binding Hardcover
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Overview: A Devil's Chaplain: Selected Writings

Devil's Chaplain
Product Details
Language English
Publication Date February 3, 2003
Publisher Orion
Contributor(s) Richard Dawkins
Binding Hardcover
Edition First Edition
Page Count 320
ISBN 10 0297829734
ISBN 13 9780297829737
Dimensions and Weight
Product Dimensions 17 cm x 3.1 cm x 24.3 cm
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  1.  Great Intellectual stimulation 25 June, 2014 On
    This is for all people who believe in the ideology that there was a creator and there was a design rather a complex design. This is for all those who can believe, can believe on the evidences science has provided, and can break the shackles of social, traditional conditioning which has junked human mind over a period of time. This is not for agnostics; this is for all who believe in pure logic. This is about the truth and the truth very well explained by Richard Dawkins:

    There is no absolute truth, scientific truths are merely hypothesis that have so far failed to be falsified, destined to be superseded. At worst after the next scientific revolution, today’s truth will seem quaint and absurd, if not actually false. The best you scientist can hope for is a series of approximations which progressively reduces errors but never eliminate them.

    Dawkins again explains the science and scientist.

    Scientist- the specialist in discovering the truth act like detectives they make a hypothesis what might be true and try to support it with the evidences and scientific validations. A doctor will not cure straight away for measles, he will look first the symptoms and when make a guess that you might be suffering from measles and accordingly diagnose. When he is sure that is the case he’ll get the blood test and certify that you are suffering from measles.

    Only evidence is a good reason for believing something and warns you against three bad reasons for believing anything. They are called ‘tradition’, ‘authority’ and revelation.

    In a school address when I asked a child why he believed in an idea. He replied that because his great parents, grand parents and ancestors believed in that. We believe in something because Hindu believes in…Muslim believes in.. Tradition means belief handed down from grandparent to parent child and so on. Traditional beliefs almost start from nothing; perhaps somebody just make up them originally but after some time they are believed because they are so old and make them special.

    Authority – you are told to believe in something by the religion, church or societal system.

    The third thing is revelation. The pope had a revelation that his body is lifted up. Religious people believe in something even if it is not true and there is no evidence to substantiate that. They believe just because they have the feeling called ‘revelation’.

    Well all this thought provoking stuff you will encounter in “A Devil’s Chaplian” by Richard Dawkins the great zoologist who have had astounding contribution in the field of genetics and evolutionary biology. In his Book “selfish gene he talked about genotype, gnome, natural selection, sexual selection, adaptive and non-adaptive evolution, one who does not believe in the credentials of revered Dawkins may not find this book meaningful because none can help agnostics. Dawkins explains the concrete and complex biology of evolution in surrealist way. He coined the term ‘Mime’. Mime is a self replicating gene which keeps replicating the genetic content irreducibly leaving behind the inferior genes over a period of time through mutation and selectively progresses towards complexity. Mime has been the subject of discussion and research and many biologist and geneticist have invested their lives for Mime.

    Let’s have a word for Darwinism explained in the chapter Darwin’s Triumphant:

    Core Darwinism, I shall suggest is the minimal theory that evolution is guided in adaptively non-random directions by the non random survival of small random hereditary changes. Note specially the words adaptive and small. Small implies that adaptive evolution is gradualist and we shall see why this must be so in a moment. Adaptive does not imply that all evolution has been adaptive only the core Darwinism‘s concerns is limited to it that’s it. There is no reason to assume that all evolutionary process was adaptive.

    Viruses of mind and light will be thrown are beautifully woven chapters that produces a clear understanding of evolution without creating unnecessary confusion. At the same time we can‘t assume the zoologist of such stature to write in pure layman way though he wanted. He explains the convergence of science and religion; he explains ethics in relation to science.

    In ‘Information challenge’ he has tried to explain the information content of DNA and RNA’s. The information content is the measure of reduction of receptors prior uncertainty and it is measured in bits. Though banal, it requires deeper understanding. How the genes have progressed leaving all unsuccessful genes behind reducing errors and redundancy and eventually successful genes survives and that’s Darwinism.

    Lot more can be said about this. Weigh yourself.
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