How to write a counter argument and refutation

April 23, by Nick Gibson Being able to formulate and write an effective counter argument is one of the most important skills anyone can possess. Whether in debate or in an academic thesis, a counter argument can be used to both weaken opposing viewpoints and strengthen your own.

How to write a counter argument and refutation

These are the four horsemen of New Atheism. New Atheism is merely atheism with hegemonic, scientistic ambitions, seeking not co-existence with religion, but the complete destruction of religion in all its forms, liberal and orthodox alike.

Many describe themselves as "brights," members of a "community of reason," reason here equated with belief in a naturalistic worldview.

All atheists under the banner of New Atheism believe they're advocating a rational alternative for human living, an alternative to hateful bigotry, self-imposed ignorance, and blind faith.

This could just be excellent marketing. In "The Last Superstition," Edward Feser states that naturalism, as a comprehensive worldview, cannot contain the conditions allowing for the possibility of any robust notion of reason as a source of knowledge.

As a Roman Catholic, Feser believes reason can deliver us rational insight into the fundamental categories by which the cosmos is organized. Feser goes further by taking a fast drive through intellectual history to make a comparative argument: Much of the exposition can be found in more detail in Feser's "Aquinas," an outstanding introduction to Thomism.

Not all atheism is New Atheism. Activism was never part of classical atheism, which consisted of a motley of skeptics, Stoics, Cynics, Cyrenaics, Epicureans, among others.

Existentialist brands of atheism freely live with the absurdity of life.

Building the Republic of Letters, one keystroke at a time

Postmodernists how to write a counter argument and refutation their atheism as just another faith with self-conscious irony. Some atheists may not even be materialists, such as Brand Blanshard, a metaphysical idealist.

And traditionally, rationalist atheism had a humanist, rather than an anti-humanist, spirit, offering argument to those outside of atheism, liberally extending charity, tolerance, and dialogue to those with whom it disagreed, expecting the same in return.

Back in those dark, uncivilized days when universities offered a liberal education, men gained refinement not by gaining the answers to the fundamental questions, but by knowing the weaknesses involved in holding any of the alternatives in the conversation amongst the best thinkers through time.

How to think was more important than what to think. Crude, obnoxious, unreasonable, illiberal by ignorance of the philosophical weaknesses of their own outlook, New Atheists, as self-appointed supremacists, want to silence others in the name of reason, all while holding to a strict naturalism that implicitly denies mind, intellect, and reasoning.

All four horsemen of New Atheism are children of Schopenhauer, the first intellectual to make a public point of his atheism. The German Idealists attempted to integrate both the humanistic and the scientific interpretations of human experience; when the dust settled, Schopenhauer's body of thought remained.

Schopenhauer argued we can only have explanations within experience, never beyond it; to explain an event is only a relational request for more events. In explanations, at least one event is always left unexplained as our thought presses up against the raw, aimless activity of an unconscious universe.

This means that what is real is not necessarily what is rational. Now, consider that Dawkins believes human beings are thoughtless puppets of their genetics, with ideas reduced to memes we involuntarily catch, like a disease. Consider that Dennett finds no difference between human beings and unconscious zombies.

Consider the iconoclasm of Hitchens, a man who hated the worship of anything perceived to be good, not because men worship the wrong things, but because he opposed the very idea of worship. Consider that Harris flinches in his otherwise relentless criticism of religion to find kind things to say, not about Eastern religion per se, but about the extreme self-absorption he thinks exists in Eastern religion.

Schopenhauer himself frequently read the Upanishads before going to sleep, and without his philosophy, the atheism of the kind we encounter today would not be possible.

Feser makes no use of Schopenhauer in his own intemperate, illiberal polemic, though he does paint the explanatory model assumed by the New Atheists very much in the style of Schopenhauer's philosophy. Despite this, Feser finds the source of modern atheism in the philosophies accompanying the rise of science itself in the s, the point being that the errors of atheism are the same errors involved in the rejection of an Aristotelian philosophy.

We're given the impression that if one can show that the dismissal of Aristotelian philosophy was unjustified, the Aristotelian-Thomistic framework can be restored to its former position. Feser's gambit here shows severe problems if we examine what the strategy involves in a larger picture.

One, in comparison with the sciences, it was the humanities that over time compromised the integrity of orthodox religion. As a method of discovering even divine purposes in creation, natural history, as a possibility, could not even conceivably displace the institutional authority of doctrine and revelation without the previous development of new principles of scriptural hermeneutics.

Under the philological-historical approach to textual interpretation, perhaps exemplified by Lorenzo VallaRoman law was no longer viewed as a coherent body of principles instantiating natural laws; newly uncovered contradictions demonstrated different applications of the law to meet different interests at different times.

Such humanist methods spilled over to sacred literature, displacing theological principles about the ends of exegesis with purely textual concerns about the reliability of authors. The philosopher Jean Bodin argued a historian should seek eyewitness accounts, prefer reports from those with administrative experience, take into account the opinion of contemporary sources, and get information about authors, their political agendas, and their intended audiences.

By the time we reach Hobbes and Gassendi, credibility, taken from the imperfect testimony of things in the world, becomes linked with frequency; the modern notion of probability grew out of the theory of signs, God now enlisted as an author, the Author of Nature.

Secondly, we need a believable explanation for why moderns rejected Aristotelianism. Feser believes the rejection had largely extrinsic motivations, moderns needing an ideology to justify activist ambitions.

Yet, while modern philosophy is activist, it is not merely activist; Aristotelian philosophy by itself provides a poor research framework.An important distinction to be appreciated is the difference between refutation and counter-argument. In the case of counter-argument, the writer acknowledges that there is substance in the contradicting argument, yet he provides evidence for his alleged stance.

This article introduces Plato's dialogue the Theaetetus (section 1), and briefly summarises its plot (section 2). Two leading interpretations of the dialogue, the Unitarian and Revisionist readings, are contrasted in section 3.

Apr 24,  · Best Answer: this paper sounds to me like your writing a "position essay." A position requires a counter-argument or a refuto. counter-arguments or refutos go against your original position on the topic.

its like your standing up for whatt you believe in Status: Resolved. Personal life Family and training. Karl Popper was born in Vienna (then in Austria-Hungary) in to upper-middle-class parents. All of Popper's grandparents were Jewish, but they were not devout and as part of the cultural assimilation process the Popper family converted to Lutheranism before he was born and so he received a Lutheran baptism.

His father Simon Siegmund Carl Popper was a.

how to write a counter argument and refutation

Apr 23,  · Counter Argument Example: How to Write an Rebuttal. April 23, by Nick Gibson. Being able to formulate and write an effective counter argument is one of the most important skills anyone can possess. Whether in debate or in an academic thesis, a counter argument can be used to both weaken opposing viewpoints and strengthen your own.

Author: Nick Gibson. A counter-argument is an argument opposed to your thesis, or part of your thesis. It expresses the view of a person who disagrees with your position. It expresses the view of a .

The Design Argument: Answers to Atheists' Objections