The Four Horsemen

On the 30th of September 2007, Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens sat down for a first-of-its-kind, unmoderated 2-hour discussion, convened by RDFRS and filmed by Josh Timonen.

All four authors have recently received a large amount of media attention for their writings against religion – some positive, and some negative.

In this conversation the group trades stories of the public reaction to their recent books, their unexpected successes, criticisms and common misrepresentations.

They discuss the tough questions about religion that face the world today, and propose new strategies for going forward.

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  • http://elbert7fletcher.tripod.com/hcgtherapy/ Jimmy Ribsamen

    I just have to state you make numerous excellent points and will be able to write-up a variety of tips to add on just after a day or two.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_GUBB54XWOOXE6NQGAN3GWVP5SA mal from cessnock

    This video is not viewable – a message on the screen informs me “no embedded videos are currently selected for this player” – what’s going on here?

  • Dude…

     Its a tragedy that so many people in the world misinterpret or are not yet ready to be able to properly understand what religion is really about. Its been around for centuries and centuries, heck something about it must be true for it to last for so long in the world. The truth of religion can indeed be explained by logic and rationality, such methods of understanding religion do exist. Understanding it, understanding God and especially myself is one of the most important things in my life. These gentlemen are very intelligent but I hope they take their research even further to find out for themselves the origin of religion and to realise that spirituality is present in all of us.   or are not yet ready to be able to properly understand what religion is really about. Its been around for centuries and centuries, heck something about it must be true for it to last for so long in the world. The truth of religion can indeed be explained by logic and rationality, such methods of understanding religion do exist. Understanding it, understanding God and especially myself is one of the most important things in my life. These gentlemen are very intelligent but I hope they take their research even further to find out for themselves the origin of religion and to realise that spirituality is present in all of us.  

  • Dude…

     Its a tragedy that so many people in the world misinterpret or are not yet ready to be able to properly understand what religion is really about. Its been around for centuries and centuries, heck something about it must be true for it to last for so long in the world. The truth of religion can indeed be explained by logic and rationality, such methods of understanding religion do exist. Understanding it, understanding God and especially myself is one of the most important things in my life. These gentlemen are very intelligent but I hope they take their research even further to find out for themselves the origin of religion and to realise that spirituality is present in all of us.   or are not yet ready to be able to properly understand what religion is really about. Its been around for centuries and centuries, heck something about it must be true for it to last for so long in the world. The truth of religion can indeed be explained by logic and rationality, such methods of understanding religion do exist. Understanding it, understanding God and especially myself is one of the most important things in my life. These gentlemen are very intelligent but I hope they take their research even further to find out for themselves the origin of religion and to realise that spirituality is present in all of us.  

    • JKL

      What pompous, self-righteous sanctimonious clap trap.

    • JKL

      What pompous, self-righteous sanctimonious clap trap.

    • DMT

      All humans are desires encased  in flesh, matter. Religion comes from a common human desire to connect to our roots. Religion is the animal ego in man that jumbled up material things with this desire to use as a psychological therapy for this lack in our being. It lasts so long because it works as a manipulator of the peasants psychological need for acceptance and place in our world. Religion is the perversion of the true desire to ask the question “why do I exist?” Only humans have this question but the ego is stronger. We will all reach the same conclusion, we are just at a very young level of development. Like unripe fruit. We are all one soul, Adam that is totally in the presents of our true reality, yet we don’t perceive it yet. We live in a dream. The whole atheist and religious argument is the writers block of our development of a script that we can all accept. Think of humanity as a schizophrenic person who created peaces in order to heal itself. This is humanity. To understand religion you must understand Kabbalah. Here is a link to a wide spreading science that is compelling so many people to connect to our roots: The creator. http://www.perceivingreality.com/

    • DMT

      All humans are desires encased  in flesh, matter. Religion comes from a common human desire to connect to our roots. Religion is the animal ego in man that jumbled up material things with this desire to use as a psychological therapy for this lack in our being. It lasts so long because it works as a manipulator of the peasants psychological need for acceptance and place in our world. Religion is the perversion of the true desire to ask the question “why do I exist?” Only humans have this question but the ego is stronger. We will all reach the same conclusion, we are just at a very young level of development. Like unripe fruit. We are all one soul, Adam that is totally in the presents of our true reality, yet we don’t perceive it yet. We live in a dream. The whole atheist and religious argument is the writers block of our development of a script that we can all accept. Think of humanity as a schizophrenic person who created peaces in order to heal itself. This is humanity. To understand religion you must understand Kabbalah. Here is a link to a wide spreading science that is compelling so many people to connect to our roots: The creator. http://www.perceivingreality.com/

    • Jay

      All I can say is that just because something has existed for centuries this does not make it correct. My proof of this? Well many religions have existed for centuries which all contradict one another and they can’t all be right can they? So once again just because something has existed for hundreds of years doesn’t act as proof. What religion does is serve a purpose. When I spoke to my ex a few days ago she revealed that she had become much more catholic and when I asked her why she told me “it’s just comforting.” I didn’t correct her because I didn’t feel it was my place to do so and perhaps I was being condescending by not giving her my full opinion but surely you can’t make a conscious decision to believe something just because it makes you feel better? Sure it’s comforting but so is eating junk food or drinking alcohol but we can’t all do that indefinitely. I don’t blame people for wanting religion to be true, I want it to be true, anyone would but unfortunately I would rather know the truth in the hope that I might discover something beyond it that will lead to genuine utopia than to settle with a lie that makes me feel better for now but ultimately leads nowhere.

    • Jay

      All I can say is that just because something has existed for centuries this does not make it correct. My proof of this? Well many religions have existed for centuries which all contradict one another and they can’t all be right can they? So once again just because something has existed for hundreds of years doesn’t act as proof. What religion does is serve a purpose. When I spoke to my ex a few days ago she revealed that she had become much more catholic and when I asked her why she told me “it’s just comforting.” I didn’t correct her because I didn’t feel it was my place to do so and perhaps I was being condescending by not giving her my full opinion but surely you can’t make a conscious decision to believe something just because it makes you feel better? Sure it’s comforting but so is eating junk food or drinking alcohol but we can’t all do that indefinitely. I don’t blame people for wanting religion to be true, I want it to be true, anyone would but unfortunately I would rather know the truth in the hope that I might discover something beyond it that will lead to genuine utopia than to settle with a lie that makes me feel better for now but ultimately leads nowhere.

    • Contact

      I guess you also believe in the greek / roman gods? no? those are just fantasy right…  but they were around for a long long time so clearly by your logic they should..

      How about Krishna, buddha, muhammad, or any number of “old religions” that people just conveniently forget about if it conflicts with their flavour of the month omnipresent deity.

      I’m gonna go ahead and use religious ignorance here against you and say that I know FOR A FACT that god doesn’t exist.. you know why? Cause I blindly believe it.  

  • Sam Scott

    This would have been better if they replaced Christopher Hitchens and Sam Harris with Kirk Cameron and Ray Comfort.

    • c4p0ne

      Hell no. never replace Sam Harris! Harris’s thought process and simple-yet-powerful metaphors and eloquent mode of speaking helps to propagate rational-thinking throughout the world to individuals who otherwise would not be open to it. I think Harris is worth all the rest of the 3 horsemen put together! He decimates any and all preposterous religious arguments with a luxurious kind of grace, style, and confidence one just loves to watch over and over.

  • Nephilistpost

    I doubt anything I say will make a jot of difference but… I can’t help but feel that any one of these guys has ever been blindfolded and spanked by a latino girl with a huge ass.. in fact I’d stake my house on it.

    • alex

      what is the point to be blindfold ,  and y spanking !

      I would rather see the woman(latino) and enjoy the ….. you view .

      and y spanking ? I would rather get b…..n

    • lilmisssunshine

      LatinA. If you’re going to talk about my people in a sexualized way (like most white people like to do, for some reason), you should at least know ENOUGH about us to realize that MEN are LATINO and WOMEN are LATINA. We have male and female words, learn ’em. The least you could do is use google. You are on the internet.

      • LatinofromChino

        What if he is black…or Asian? Remember the old saying about making ASSumptions? Hell, the poster could even be a woman….Just saying. Everyone here seems to assume things. 

    • lilmisssunshine

      LatinA. If you’re going to talk about my people in a sexualized way (like most white people like to do, for some reason), you should at least know ENOUGH about us to realize that MEN are LATINO and WOMEN are LATINA. We have male and female words, learn ’em. The least you could do is use google. You are on the internet.

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  • alex

    God need people to exists , if there was no people god would not exist .

    I question even the pope believes , Y does he go to hospital when sick to the people of sciences and not to church ?

    if it was GOD will for him to be sick and die Y is he challenging god will ,

    and if there was a god or paradise Y is he in no harry to go and meet him ,

    what a lot of charlatans , they must by laughing all the way to the bank ,

    And with so many fools out there sure they are rich .

    I just have to look at where all this suppose religious people live and I know it is all about money and controlling people mined`s .

  • Wally

    I can only assume that the people questioning religious beliefs, only know but a fraction of what theyre about!! You can’t denounce something that you don’t fully have knowledge of and understanding.  Better to get that knowledge to improve your argument!! Having said that, a lot of Religions have been bastardized by Satanists infiltrating, which creates the contradictions of some, and this has unfortunately coloured peoples view of All Regligion.  What I know for sure is that, going directly to the source – the ‘Bible’ – is the best route.  I have had experience in a few religions in my search for truth, and it seems now that all that I know of the Bible has come to pass, and I now know that it is the truth as it has provided me with knowledge and understanding!!

    • Brian

      I went to church and and Sunday school every Sunday for 20 years. I also went to a Christian church and high school. Not only did I go, but I absolutely believed everything about it. After a while I realized that religion never had answers to the important questions and their answer to everything seemed to always be have faith. Chances are I probably not only know more but have also memorized more verses of the bible than you. The only conclusion that I have ever been able to come to is that the more you learn about religion and the bible, the more the believability of it starts to unravel. Try thinking for yourself for a change, it might be scary but at least you will still have your integrity. Personally I think peoples religious beliefs and zealotry have caused them to commit some of the most immoral and “ungodly” atrocities the world has ever seen. Just look at the Spanish Inquisition and the crusades. In my view conforming to the subservience of religious authorities has to be the biggest obstacle in the way of people coming in touch with their true spirituality, notice how I speak of the two as completely different concepts. I mean you have this beautiful gift of a brain, try using yours.   

      • Guest

        I totally agree, Brian. I am a Christian but I do not dogmatically follow some preacher…I teach myself. If you ever come across Joseph Campbell’s “Thou Art That”, he talks about how the priesthood and orthodox faith destroys the true spiritual growth of the individual. You have to find God on your own and not become dependent on some pastor to teach you every important thing there is to know about existence/God

  • Cow_girl_up75

    If there is no belief in something superior or a high being what is the point if existing. What is the point of even caring what people feel, think or believe, if there was nothing more than just the moment. 120 years tops to end up no where. So why be so concerned. There must be something in the back of the mind for those that argue the existence of “God”. Or why else would they care or try to mislead people of faith. If there is nothing more -why bother 

    • Rob

      There is a great point in caring what other people feel even if there isn’t a superior being, it’s called morality. I’m an atheist and I try to be as kind and selfless as I can, because I care about other people being happy rather than in pain. That’s my main beef with religion: the only reason religious people don’t kill, steal etc is because they don’t want to be punished by god, not because they think it’s morally wrong anyway. And answering you’re other question “if there is nothing more -why bother?”….why not simply enjoy your short time on earth? use it for good, to help other people, or just make it exciting while you can. I feel for you, we are both going to die, and when we do, we will be 6 feet deep and that is all. The only difference is that I will have lead a free life and you have lived under a dictatorship. Stop wasting your life, you can free yourself.

      • Believer

        Not every religious person refuses to kill because they fear God. Fear of punishment is not the driving force in every religious person’s life. Morality can exist in the mind of the believer. Not every Christian believes in a “Hell” presented in Dante’s Inferno. Some individuals, like myself, believe in a God and struggle to keep on the straight-and-narrow because they know that it is the right thing to do in the end. Positive actions generate positive results. 
        The problem that I have in discussing religion with some people is that they tend to generalize and lump whole categories of “believers” into one category or fringe of the faith that they are examining. 

  • Alex

    I challenge any one how say is a believer ,

    1 give all you have ( you will get more in haven ) “it will be easier for a poor to enter the kingdom of god then a rich man ” it is in the Bible .

    2 never go to a doctor “do not challenge god will ” have faith 

    3 love your neighbor like your self , so the USA should love every one and NOT               conquer them for the oil ! 

    there was a time I would understand that people believed in delusional stories there was no education or information , 

    plus god is not perfect , he work only 6 day a eternity !
    y do I have to work t`ill I drop dead !

  • klavsy

    IF THERE IS NO GOD THEN WHAT IS THE POINT??? This is exactly the kind of mentality that is destroying mankind from within. Environmental damage, poverty,and many self inflicted diseases caused by drugs, alcohol and overeating all have a similiar problem…..(religion). As a society religion perpetuates the ideal that there is this amazing afterlife in the clouds or lots of virgins etc (these places all represent human desires and ideals not that of the divine). In doing this people can discard any sense of responsibility for their actions whilst they ARE HERE, because if you compare 80 or so years to eternity life is pretty insignificant. The POINT is to contribute to humanity, whether it be through children, altruism, knowledge, or labour. The real question is IF THERE IS A GOD THEN WHAT IS THE POINT. If it’s all part of gods ‘PLAN’ nothing you do affects your surrounding world in any way at all, your actions are pre-ordained, everything happens just as ‘GOD’ wanted. Why bother helping a stranger, why bother saving the enviroment, why bother educating children. Whether you do or dont it had already been decided well before you made any type of decision anyway. GOD essentially voids free will, our purpose is not to follow a set path designed by a higher being, but, rather to create our own path, make our own fate, and empower ourselves through actions and choices……that is free will.

  • Bebe

    What do you mean what is the point? There is no point to us being here on this planet. We may try to find one, but it is all a chain of coincidences. Why would there be a point to all of this? Of course we will try to do our best, because now that we are here, we might as well enjoy it

  • klavsy

    Maybe try read more than the first line of the paragraph and you will see that is pretty much what i said…

  • c4p0ne

    I suspect that religion is originally born out of mans fear of his own mortality. Over time, it has slowly evolved into among other things, a method of control over vast populations of individuals who simply weren’t armed with the proper tools & knowledge to combat such malign and baseless notions of where we came from. I’ve found that the notion of our own frighteningly binary existence in this continuum, “1=existing, 0=not” is unavoidably upsetting, especially (and unsurprisingly) to those who possess higher intellectual reasoning skills. It is because science, in its current infancy, is unable yet to combat this unnerving eventuality for all of us. As a result, people fall into this abyss of hopeless struggle to somehow, someway rationalize death through religious fabrications that allow them “cheat” not only the mistakes they made in file, but even death itself… The sad news is, it’s not going to happen, for any of us.