The Realist must get real. He speaks of Richard Dawkins’ work as “droning” and “dreary” and Pedant’s thoughts as a “fog” then he offers up precisely that to readers.
Believers are in global decline (except in the US) but doubters, agnostics, non-believers and atheists simply reject notions of any god, for want of evidence. The Realist relies on discredited “cosmic conscious” arguments and his bias to push an agenda.
He claims the notion of God lies in our consciousness, but does it? It certainly doesn’t lie in mine. We think with the limbic cells in the temporal lobe of our brain and use our consciousness to perceive and explain what the mind, intellect and soul cannot, since these are simply abstract notions.
Certainly, mindful meditation is useful to focus, structure and train the brain, but the claim that such practices might “separate one from happiness or God” is absurd mystic mumbo jumbo.
Clearly there are different ways of believing and knowing. So how does knowledge and belief come about? We know by using reason, whereas we rely on our faith and abstract notions and ideas to believe. We often rely on faith to believe “in” something and emotion to believe “that” something exists or is probable. We know belief is far less trustworthy than knowledge.
Belief in any god is not something that “lies” in our consciousness. Such beliefs are instilled in us by indoctrination at a young age or else stem from our own anxieties or our lack of understanding.