Here, in an interview in Australia, philosopher Michael Ruse makes his recurrent claim that Richard Dawkins has very little comprehension of the theology he attacked in The God Delusion.
Ruse on the First Cause argument:
“You know, and I know, that Christians (St. Augustine, certainly St. Thomas) spent a hell of a lot of time—I mean, they knew this—what they were trying to do, was articulate a notion of God who would be First Cause: you know, the whole notion of a Satiety Aseity, God as a Necessary Being. You know, God’s essence is His existence.”
. . . Christians have got some grown-up responses to these sorts of things, and I think that Dawkins does a serious disservice to the cause of nonbelief by not being prepared to take seriously the kinds of things that believers believe in.”
Well, as many have pointed out, I’m neither a philosopher nor a theologian, but these highly sophisticated defenses of the First Cause Argument seem to me merely intellectualized versions of the assertion, “My kind of God did too exist forever!” Perhaps real philosopher/theologians like Eric MacDonald can weigh in here.
Anyway, here, according to a new survey by the Pew Forum, are some of the things that Americans do believe (proportion of respondents who accept the notions):
Bible as the word of God: 63%
Bible as the literal word of God: 33%
Life after death: 74%
Angels and demons: 68%
Own religion is the one truth path that can lead to eternal life: 24%
Many religions can lead to eternal life: 74%