A Debate About The Wisdom of Trying To Deconvert People

Jaime: So I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how best to debate the existence of God with religious believers… Kelly: Why would you do that? Jaime: Do what? Kelly: Debate the existence of God with religious believers. What’s the point in that? Jaime: What do you mean, “what’s the point?” We live in the [Read More...]

Fighting The Dictionary

Ophelia wrote an insightful, controversial paragraph: Churches don’t do education. Religion doesn’t do education. Churches and religion do religion, which is different from education. Education is what schools do. It is fundamentally secular – it is about the world, and exploring and learning about the world. Like newspapers, like forensics, like medicine, like so many human institutions, [Read More...]

Who Are You Calling Stupid?

In no small part due to an incredibly kind write up from my friend Richard Wade, a lot of people have now read my series of posts giving tips for reaching out to religious believers. And my advice to not call religious people stupid, which led off the series, seems to have essentially dominated and colored people’s [Read More...]

Religious Error Theory

In this post, I want to clarify a fundamental point of contention between New Atheists and many defenders of religion. Specifically I want to explore what is really going on in disputes over whether religious people’s religious belief statements should be taken literally and judged good or bad by their literal content. I will explicate [Read More...]

Nietzsche: We Cannot "Selflessly" Investigate Morality

Nietzsche writes a lot of things which attack the ideal of selflessness. Yet he does not make any blanket call for an ideal of unmitigated, small-minded selfishness. He calls for certain kinds of self-concern and in some cases certain kinds of self-denial in the pursuit of higher purposes or higher ideals of self-cultivation. Rather than [Read More...]

Homosexuality As Naturally Good Part 1: Laying Out Objections To Ethical Naturalism, Some On Behalf Of Gays

I intend to lay out the case for the ethical goodness of homosexuality for homosexual people in a way that is consistent with my funadmentally naturalistic ethical theory. Many philosophers, natural scientists, social scientists, and laypeople alike are averse about trying to base ethical judgments on appeals to nature. And there are a number of [Read More...]

I Don’t Really Give A Fuck About Tone, Per Se

In my ten posts of tips for reaching out to religious believers this past week, people have repeatedly gotten the idea that I was fretting about tone. But I wasn’t. I never used the word and it never even crossed my mind to do so. I am concerned with the truth and with the good. [Read More...]

I Am A Rationalist, Not A Tribalist.

Over the course of the last week, I published a series of ten commandments tips for atheists reaching out to religious believers. In truth most of those values are ones I could have written with minor modifications to be commandments tips for simply being a good person. Now, some people have objected in various ways [Read More...]

Audiences And Approaches

Our friend Crommie has written a post basically saying that he recognizes that it’s a good thing that there are people like me who write with religious believers in mind but that it’s also okay for him to write in a way that is indifferent to whether he offends them. He justifies his approach basically by [Read More...]