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Dec 01 2011

Chopra: “I’m more aligned with Dawkins than O’Reilly’s thinking”

You’ve gotta be shittin’ me. Deepak Chopra very publicly tore into Richard Dawkins on The O’Reilly Factor, then when he realized what an ass he came off as, apologized to Dawkins publicly… via Youtube.

It sounds like a genuine apology, of course. Once you get past the parts that Chopra did not apologize for, e.g. all the mendacious and dishonest framing he’d engaged in regarding how the conversation between Chopra and Dawkins went. It’s good that he didn’t use that platform to defend his worldview. It’s good that he apologized for what he did. That apology will never reach the same audience that O’Reilly’s interview did, though.

The entirety of Chopra’s philosophy is predicated on co-opting scientific terms that he simply does not understand, so his accusing Dawkins of using his scientific credentials to camouflage bigotry is beyond something you can apologize for in such a blanket and unspecific manner. No matter how contrite his apology was, it fails on the fundamental level of not specifying why he should be apologizing, and where he does specify, he does it in such a thin gruel manner. This is ultimately the pseudoscientific religious ponce’s version of “I’m sorry for whatever I did that annoyed you.”

Hat tip to The Friendly Atheist. If Hemant hadn’t blogged it, it probably would have escaped my notice.

7 comments

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  1. 1
    Chance

    Woah now. Cool your jets. Why attack someone who is apologizing? Your response is totally invalidated. The guy is honestly sorry for misrepresenting Dawkins, and he was rather specific in what he was apologizing for: slandering and misrepresenting Dawkins. He took personal responsibility and apologized rather humbly imo, even going one step further and saying he also regretted it on the grounds that he is more aligned with Dawkins than O’Reilly.

    What exactly do you want from the guy? It seems like you’re just taking issue to take issue.

  2. 2
    Jason Thibeault

    No. I am not merely taking offense to take offense. In fact, I said that it is good that he apologized, and that it was (in my estimation) contrite. What I want is specificity. When you throw out random insults for five minutes, then later apologize for “some comments that were unfair”, it would be really helpful if you were to specify which comments, and how they were unfair (e.g. that Dawkins is explicitly not a bigot and is not misusing his scientific credentials, for instance). And some idea of what ways his philosophies “more closely align” with Dawkins in any way whatsoever.

    The entire video smacks as self-serving. He’s a happy guru and his mean-spirited assault (goaded out of him by O’Reilly most likely) is well out of his carefully cultivated character. He probably did this solely to repair the damage done to that image with his followers.

  3. 3
    janiceintoronto

    Chopra has a hell of a lot more to apologize about.

  4. 4
    kraut

    I am sorry, any apology by a shill, an asshole, a nincompoop like Chopra is worthless.
    I hope Dawkins rejects it; a liar and fraud like Chopra cannot be taken seriously.

  5. 5
    Nice Ogress

    Ultimately, I suspect this apology is Deepak’s sense of self-preservation kicking in. Yes, Deepak’s a silly charlatan with silly beliefs, but he’s not unintelligent. Any social engineer/con artist’s got to be a fairly decent judge of human nature. So he’s got to know, surely, what side of the culture war works best for him and what side he benefits from the most in the long run – and that’s the side of Dawkins.

    After all, if the Dawkinses of the world win the culture war, Deepak’s silly beliefs will be, for the most part, tolerated (if mocked). If the O’Reillies of the world win the culture war, they’ll burn him at the stake.

  6. 6
    AlanMac

    If the O’Reillies of the world win the culture war, they’ll burn him at the stake.

    Damn, kinda makes me want the “O’Reillys” to win for just long enough…

  7. 7
    tim Rowledge

    The only level of apology that would be acceptable from DeepWoo would be a total admission of having spent the last goodness-knows-how-long spouting rubbish in order to make money from woo-heads, followed by a complete withdrawal from public life.

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