Atheists cannot live as if their beliefs are true.
According to atheist biologist Richard Dawkins,
“We are survival machines – robot vehicles blindly programmed to preserve the selfish molecules known as genes. This is a truth which still fills me with astonishment.”
But does Dawkins treat his wife and children as if they are blindly programmed robot vehicles? One would hope not. And how could a blindly programmed survival machine determine truth? Making a truth judgement is a voluntary mental process, not a chemical or mechanical process such as digestion or a bodily reflex. Regarding this point, Nancy Pearcey writes in her book Finding Truth:
“Materialism reduces thinking to biochemical processes in the brain, akin to the chemical reactions in digestion. But digestion is not something that can be true or false. It is just a biological fact. If thinking is reduced to brain processes, then our ideas are not true or false either. But in that case, how can the materialist know that materialism is true? The philosophy is self-refuting.”
Why not? Minsky goes on: “No matter that the physical world provides no room for freedom of will; that concept is essential to our models of the mental realm.” We cannot “ever give it up. We’re virtually forced to maintain that belief, even though we know it’s false.” False, that is, according to Minsky’s materialist worldview. This is an amazing case of Orwellian doublethink.