I never thought it would happen, but I'm afraid I have to admit it's true: regarding blogging, my general feelings so far in 2010 can be summarized in the statement, "for the birds." Nothing really interests me anymore, at least not on the atheist blogs I've grown accustomed to reading. However, I will say that jim's series Proof of God's Existence is probably the best thing going in the aetheosphere right now, and I do hope he keeps at it.
Now, I am definitely not saying I've lost interest in writing or philological work, because that's not true at all. Actually, I'm now more enthused in my work than ever. Lately I've been spending quite a bit of time fine-tuning the new homepage, last updated February 2nd 2010 and currently presenting just short of 100 arguments pertinent to (a)theist discussion. I'm doing work, it's just not immediately visible. So that explains the reluctance to write new posts every day. I've burned out on the aetheosphere, and decided to put my work where I imagine it might count for something more: the book.
That being said, by no means am I through with the blogosphere. In fact, just this morning I read a post over at MS Quixote's that got the gears turning: A Problem of Evil…
In reference to recent events in Haiti, MS Quixote wrote,
The world, which necessarily includes all events within it, is indifferent precisely because matter, energy, space, time, and any other physicality if there be such a thing, do not possess properties necessary for non-indifference… Under this view, there’s no such thing as evil. There are events. There are perturbations of matter and energy. There are earthquakes. They are but occurrences, not meaningfully different under Naturalism than the gravity exerted between Jupiter and Saturn.
I literally raised both hands in the air and declared an emphatic "yes" when I read those sentences. There exists what I describe as a sort of "ideological middle ground" between the Christian and the Naturalist. I make the distinction "ideological middle ground" because I tend to agree with Bob Dylan that, "you either got faith or unbelief, and there ain't no middle ground," (spiritually speaking).
The ideological middle ground is this: many Christians tend to view natural disasters empathetically, as horrible yet contingent unpleasantries that resulted from the fall of man. However, swap "horrible yet contingent unpleasantries that resulted from the fall of man" with "horrible yet non-contingent unpleasantries that necessarily result from an imperfect Earth," then note that many Naturalists react to natural disasters the same way as the aforementioned Christians. To me, therein lies the inconsistency.
What I'm getting at is this: Quixote's sentences should serve as a wake-up call to Naturalists who embrace this "ideological middle ground." I'm sure on many atheist sites I'd catch a can of whoop-ass for what I'm about to say, but I honestly believe that one cannot be a Naturalist and have justified moral outrage at events like the recent one in Haiti. In fact, coming from a Naturalist point of view, I think we can make a strong argument that the world needs more earthquakes, tsunamis and natural disasters, to wipe the inharmonious scourge of mankind from the face of this beautiful planet we call home. Such events would certainly serve Earth better if they occurred in the industrialized nations, but who's to say these natural disasters aren't Earth's way of excising the human cancer that threatens all species? If we're all just a conglomeration of chemicals on the brink of permanent non-existence, then why not embrace the cruel indifference of the world and quit feeling sorry for the recipients of natural disasters?
Now, please note that this is NOT my true reaction to the tragedy in Haiti. However – assuming it were – it would seem to me that the best any atheist or Naturalist could say in response would be something along the lines of me "being cruel" or "lacking empathy," and to those Naturalists I would ask: can you give me one reason why I should care?
After all, are not events such as those in Haiti as equally meaningless as "the gravity exerted between Jupiter and Saturn?"