Monday, April 11, 2011

Refutation through Diagnosis

In an article published this morning at the Charles Colson Center, I referred to an essay that C.S. Lewis published in his book God in the Dock. In the essay, titled “‘Bulverism’ or, the Foundation of 20th Century Thought,” Lewis identified a practice that was becoming widespread in his day – the practice of psychologizing those we disagree with instead of showing how their arguments are actually false.
“Nowadays,” wrote Lewis, “the Freudian will tell you to go and analyse [those who] all think Elizabeth a great queen because they all have a mother-complex. Their thoughts are psychologically tainted at the source.” While it may be true that those who think Elizabeth a great queen do so because they have a mother-complex, “Does the taint invalidate the tainted thought – in the sense of making it untrue – or not?” asks Lewis.

We run into this sort of thing all the time. Keep reading...
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