to do in a nearer trench

NewAmerica

Senior Member
Mandarin
Does "to do in a nearer trench" mean "to fight almost face to face"? I am not sure of it and feel so awkward that I don't know how to properly express my question.

Thanks in advance
********************

There were several moments during our panel discussions that brought to mind the final scene of Invasion of the Body Snatchers: people who looked like scientists, had published as scientists, and would soon be returning to their labs, nevertheless gave voice to the alien hiss of religious obscurantism at the slightest prodding. I had previously imagined that the front lines in our culture wars were to be found at the entrance to a megachurch. I now realized that we have considerable work to do in a nearer trench.



-Sam Harris (The Moral Landscape Page 22)
 
  • lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    The nearer trench is science as opposed to religion. He's saying, wow, look, it doesn't take much to get even scientists defending unprovable religious tenets.
     

    NewAmerica

    Senior Member
    Mandarin
    The nearer trench is science as opposed to religion. He's saying, wow, look, it doesn't take much to get even scientists defending unprovable religious tenets.
    And thus real scientists have a lot of work to do about the thoughts and behaviors of these scientists, whose unprovable defending is violating the spirit of science, after all?
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    And thus real scientists have a lot of work to do about the thoughts and behaviors of these scientists, whose unprovable defending is violating the spirit of science, after all?
    No.

    I had previously imagined that the front lines in our culture wars were to be found at the entrance to a megachurch [= religion]. I now realized that we have considerable work to do in a nearer trench [= science].​

    So it's "we" who have more work to do in the culture wars. (Whoever that means!)
     

    dojibear

    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    < Off-topic comments removed. Cagey, moderator >

    I now realized that we have considerable work to do in a nearer trench.
    Here "we" means Mr. Harris and other people who are actively fighting "our culture war" which he describes elsewhere. That may include both scientists and non-scientists.
     
    Last edited by a moderator:
    < Previous | Next >
    Top