Klinghoffer: Darwinists Know Nothing of Life

Take a look at the title of David Klinghoffer’s latest post at the Discovery Institute’s creationist blog: Under Materialism, No Meaning to Life — and No Life, Either.

We could have fun just talking about his title, but the post isn’t very long, so let’s find out what he has to say. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:

In what our friend Eric Metaxas calls the “scientistic materialist” perspective, there is not only no ultimate purpose or meaning to life. “If we are just material beings,” says Eric, “then there is actually no such thing as life,” either.

Eric Metaxas isn’t officially a Discoveroid, but they quote him all the time. We refer to him as a Discoveroid fellow traveler. Regarding the bizarre statement just quoted, Klinghoffer says:

That’s a profound point that comes out of his new radio and podcast interview with J. Scott Turner [link omitted].

Yes, profound. BWAHAHAHAHAHA!. After that he tells us:

Turner’s spot-on phrase [during his interview with Metaxas], the “Reverse Pinocchio,” captures the idea well. The wooden boy wished to become a real, living boy, and in the movie, he gets his wish.

What does that have to do with anything? Klinghoffer explains:

Materialists, on the other hand, look at life and deny that it is what it seems to be, a dance of purpose and desire not explicable in the familiar mechanistic terms of Darwinian ideology.

Did you get that, you pathetic materialist? Life is “a dance of purpose and desire.” Klinghoffer continues:

In seeking to explain the phenomenon of life, says Dr. Turner, Darwinism “falls flat on its face.”

Darwin never attempted to explain “the phenomenon of life.” Only its evolution. Let’s read on:

He [Turner, the interviewer] explains that that is why it has to bracket words such as intelligence and design in “scare quotes.”

We always put the word “theory” in quotes when referring to intelligent design, but it has nothing to do with the dance of life.

The rest of Klinghoffer’s brief post is a plug for a new book by Metaxas. You can click over there if you’re interested.

So this is where we leave him, dancing his dance of purpose and desire, while you, dear reader, pathetic Darwinist that you are, are not truly alive.

Copyright © 2017. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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22 responses to “Klinghoffer: Darwinists Know Nothing of Life

  1. Derek Freyberg

    I wonder if Klingy is really quoting Metaxas, or has pasted together a couple of different quotes; but I’ll be damned if I will waste the time necessary to listen to the podcast to find out, since it’s a nonsensical statement either way.

  2. In what our friend Eric Metaxas calls the “scientistic materialist” perspective, there is not only no ultimate purpose or meaning to life. “If we are just material beings,” says Eric, “then there is actually no such thing as life,” either.


    Materialists, on the other hand, look at life and deny that it is what it seems to be, a dance of purpose and desire not explicable in the familiar mechanistic terms of Darwinian ideology.

    Let’s ignore the sappy metaphor and merely point out that plenty of things aren’t what they “seem to be.”

  3. Michael Fugate


    Why is it not explicable? Klinghoffer and Turner and Metaxas never say?

  4. “A dance of purpose and desire” sounds like the name of a Phil Collins album no one should ever have to listen to.

  5. Worse: Michael Bolton. Eric Metaxas is the Michael Bolton of modern thought.

  6. These guys spout off unsupported seemingly profound nonsense as if they have their own version of the new age BS generator. http://sebpearce.com/bullshit/

    Has anyone come up with a creationist BS generator? Seems like a worth while endeavor.

  7. Michael Fugate

    What is the “ultimate” purpose of life? To amuse God – according to the unimaginative?

  8. Herr Klingenhofferman seems to have developed a severe case of diarrhea of the pen/keyboard. Likely there’s a shortage of TP at the Dishonesty Institute, so he’s in hip deep trouble. Yuck!

  9. Pete Moulton

    A “…dance of purpose and desire…” Metaxas has been messing around with the Deepak Chopra superficial profundity generator again, hasn’t he?

  10. Dave Luckett

    I don’t suppose there’s any point in this, but the idea of studying reality consists of finding out what is, not what you think ought to be.

  11. MichaelF thinks he’s clever: “Why is it not explicable?”
    it’s right there. Because the wooden boy PInocchio!

  12. Walt Whitman
    When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer

  13. If you live in a magical world, where the only conceivable difference between living things and non-living things is the presence or absence of the magical life force, and you lack the imagination to consider that others may not share your illusions; then it is obvious that those of us who deny the existence of magic must therefore also deny that we are truly alive.

  14. But magic tells us that all things are connected. The influence of the Heavens on the Earth is what makes astrology work. The constellations look like early things which act like the signs of the Zodiac. The names of things tell us their essence, and the etymologies tell us the true meaning of the words. The elements: Earth, Air, Water and Fire have their zodiacal influences which also correspond to the bodily humors: Blood, yellow bile, black bile, phlegm.
    If you ignore those obvious facts, then you don’t understand life.
    Just like Whitman’s learn’d astronomer didn’t understand the stars the way that Whitman did by just going outside and looking at the stars.

  15. I’m having difficulty visualizing Klinghoffer’s dance of purpose and desire. Is it the micro-macro mambo, or the dance of the sugar plum fairies? Or maybe they’re the same thing? Anyway, there must be a lot of clomping and stomping at the headquarters of the dancing Discoveroids.

  16. Ceteris Paribus

    It happens that both Klinghoffer and Metaxas are equally inept at understanding the scope of Bonhoffer’s heroic participation in his attempt to help bring down Hitler. Bonhoeffer was acutely aware that the root cause for the the Nazi debacle was that fundamentalist Christian clerics had been instrumental in fomenting the persecution of not just Jews, but many others including homosexuals, “Gypsies”, and the disabled.

    The travesty becomes quite apparent when one recognizes that it was the Christian fundamentalists then involved who were the ones pushing Germany to war. Their “Holy Brains” had been frozen back in a time 2000 years ago when the Catholic Church persecuted Jews for the death of their Jesus. What is the same ploy now going on over the gathering conflict over the scarce real estate on the West Bank, much of it now sponsored by Fundamentalist Christians.

    A good rebuttal to the current Klinghoffer /Metaxas axis can be found at:

  17. There is the folklore of animals, where certain kinds of animals are identified with abstractions – virtues and vices, for example: “the lion” = “bravery”. That is important in understanding the lion.

  18. Bonhöffer would have straightforwardly rejected IDiocy:

    “how wrong it is to use God as a stop-gap for the incompleteness of our knowledge. If in fact the frontiers of knowledge are being pushed further and further back (and that is bound to be the case), then God is being pushed back with them, and is therefore continually in retreat. We are to find God in what we know, not in what we don’t know.”

    Letter, 1944 (ie a couple of months before he was arrested).


    Of course no sacrilege is too evil for IDiots.

  19. “I’m having difficulty visualizing Klinghoffer’s dance of purpose and desire.”

    Think Steve Martin sitting around with his family in “The Jerk”, trying to tap his foot in rhythm. That’s what it’s like inside an IDiot’s head.

  20. Ceteris Paribus usefully provides a link to

    A good rebuttal to the current Klinghoffer /Metaxas axis

    Very interesting–partcularly as the author of that piece is Richard Weikart, the Discoveroid’s chief champion of the “No Darwin,No Hitler” schtick.

    Weikart does offer here a scholary evisceration, though he does try to temper it somewhat:

    I trust that Metaxas is my brother in Christ, but unfortunately he simply does not have sufficient grounding in history, theology, and philosophy to properly interpret Bonhoeffer.

  21. Michael Fugate

    People seem to be saying the same about Metaxas’ book on Luther.
    I saw one comment that Metaxas’ Luther is like a struggling young evangelical millenial at a secular university – dealing with angst and doubt.

  22. Michael Fugate

    Klinghoffer claims human life is a “dance”. Is that a literal dance or a metaphorical dance? If it isn’t meant to be literal, then why does he insist that when scientists use teleological language as a shortcut it means that there is a god and this god made the protein with the function the scientists are describing?