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Interview with Robin LePoidevin

Robin LePoidevin


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I had a chat with the always impeccably dressed Robin LePoidevin about atheism, agnosticism, and some of his books on behalf of the Faroese Atheist Society, ‘Gudloysi.’ Despite the anger of the thunder-gods outside, it was both interesting and quite illuminating to take a peak into the mind of such a distinguished professor of philosophy.


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4 Responses to “Interview with Robin LePoidevin”

  1. Klæmint Vágadal says:

    Having listend to the interview a couple of days ago, will this post will just be by memory.

    I don’t understand his position as a “pure” agnostic. Identifing oneself agnostic, is by my means just as relevant as saying one is a human being and eats food, in order to prevent hunger.

    Many a great men have identified themselves as just agnostic, Carl Sagan being one of them, If memory serves me correct. This seems like som old school model, where theism was the belief in god, and atheism was the belief not in god – just the opposite of theism, and agnosticism was somewhere in the middle. One could say the equivalence of a “not decided”, since one could not know the answer.

    The reason I am saying the agnostic identification being the equivalence of “eating”, Is that no one knows, and the ones who do know are either deulded or possess some super cool omnicient powers. Hence are we all agnostic, with regards to the problem of god. I consider agnosticism in that sense as the number 1 on both sides of the equal sign, It’s there, but meh, who cares?

    My second comment is about the ethical proposition, that we are having a slightly hard time defining ethics, even though most people act in ethical ways. It seems as an argument from ignorance, as with the ID movement : “We can’t explain the flugellum and certain biological systems are impossible to reduce – God did it!” Even though I do not welcome the idea, that science could probably “mesure ethics” in the near future, It is a reality I have to come to terms with, given the progress of science.

    Great talk, by the way.

    • Thanks for the comment, Klæmint. I wouldn’t dare try to speak on LePoidevin’s behalf but I believe he sees agnosticism as a somewhat “fleshier” position than that which everyone is by default.

      As to not being agnostic entailing either delusion or omniscience, I would argue that we’re perfectly capable of logically deducing that certain things don’t exist even with limited data. I say so because if we find something to be self-contradictory, we’re perfectly justified in dismissing it. Or if we find proposed proposition A to be inconsistent with an already believed proposition B, then our justification for claiming to know A isn’t the case is directly proportional to how justified we are in believing B.

      In this sense, I think we can know that certain (sufficiently defined) gods don’t exist. And to boot we should hardly be accused of delusion or epistemological arrogance in so doing. Would you disagree?

  2. Klæmint Vágadal says:

    I would agree, as far as our logic deduction goes. I would ask thoug, If deducing the existence the of a certain deity, Zeus perhaps, would grant us the certainty that Zeus does not exist, or it would be highly unlikely that Zues does exist.

    But one could, and here I may be begging the question, make a plausible argument for at existence of a diety. Since my philosophy skills are limited, I would not know how that argument would come about, though. I’ve just heard Hitchens say it in a debate. Would maybe be a fun challenge for the atheist community, Gudloysi (…tries to find the tongue smiley).

  3. Rúni Schneekloth says:

    Hatta argumenti ímóti guds eksistensi við støði í tíðsbegrebinum var nokso áhugavert. Temporalitetur er ein fullkomiligani grundleggjandi eksistenstreyt fyri menniskja. Vit verða fødd, vit liva, og vit doyggja. Vit hava mál, vónir fyri framtíðina og vit handla; alt við endaligari tíð sum grundtreyt. Samstundis verður guð karakteriseraður sum tað ideella menniskja (Anscomb); men hann er uttan fyri tíðina, og er ikki temporalt tengdur.

    ella soleiðis skilti eg tað…

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