Friday 8 April 2005


Mr Save The Queen links to this brilliant article about the ignorant arrogance of the anti-religious, a subject which, as it so happens, I was arguing about only the other day. It's a very good article, and I thoroughly recommend it. But that's not why I'm blogging.

No, I mention it because it twice mentions the philosopher John Haldane, who is, apparently, a bit of an authority on the philosophy of religion these days. This is interesting to me for pure reasons of nostalgia, as I well remember sitting through Professor Haldane's lectures on moral philosophy — which were superb: interesting, enthusiastic, informative, and clear (and what a rare thing clarity is in philosophy). Back in those days, he wasn't a famous philosopher who got name-dropped and recommended, but it was clear to anyone who attended his lectures that the man was brilliant. I understand that he's a devout Catholic, but it says something about the quality of his lectures, not to mention his integrity, that I had to pick that up via the grapevine: six months of moral philosophy lectures and he never once gave even the slightest hint of his own views on abortion, sex, marriage, euthanasia, etc. In fact, it was his recommendation that introduced me to the philosophy of Peter Singer.

While I'm talking about St Andrews philosophy lecturers, it's nice to see that Dr Peter Clark is Head of School now. His lectures were so entertaining that I've based a character in my forthcoming novel on him. (Whether my novel will ever finally come forth is far from certain, but, for now, it's forthcoming.) And it's great to see that this man is no longer on this page, as he was an insufferable self-absorbed wanker.

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