In “The Moral Landscape decreased my wellbeing,” she writes:
So, to summarise:
1. Utilitarianism is right, but not any more justifiable than anything else. But who cares what other people think, anyway?
2. Because utilitarianism is right, we don’t have to be loopy post-modernists.
3. Science can tell us what makes us happy. Here’s a smattering of scientific studies about the brain.
Why in the hell do they give out book deals so easily?
This book isn’t about convincing others, or providing novel ideas. It’s about pandering to atheists with very little knowledge of philosophy and ethics and an abundance of arrogance, telling them science is with them, and then reiterating how immoral people who like FGM and throwing acid in girls’ faces are and how we don’t have to listen to them because We Are Right. This is nothing but a convoluted rehashing of utilitarianism that still falls to the same old criticisms, and an immense waste of time unless you really like a good ignorant circlejerk.
One philosopher calls her 200x the philosopher her dad is, though clearly still quite young.
More from Harris here.
Some say it’s actually worse than the kid thinks. See “Church of Flying Spaghetti Monster Stages Social Protest” where atheist wins right to wear spaghetti drainer in a driver’s licence photo (mocking religious headgear). The group is probably protected by the fact that its only dogma is the “rejection of dogma,” it can avoid confronting the demand for drivers’ licences for fully veiled women – a genuine issue.
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Denyse O'Leary is co-author of The Spiritual Brain.