Love Religious People (Tip 10 of 10 For Reaching Out To Religious Believers)

Top Ten Tips For Reaching Out To Religious Believers: 1. Don’t Call Religious Believers Stupid. 2. Make Believers Stay on Topic During Debates. 3. Don’t Tell Religious Believers What They “Really Believe”. 4. Clarify What Kinds of Evidence Warrant What Kinds of Beliefs. 5. Help Break The Spell Of Religious Reverence. 6. Don’t Demonize Religious [Read More...]

Disambiguating Faith: How Religious Beliefs Become Specifically *Faith* Beliefs

Faith is the deliberate will to believe, in advance of all future evidence and investigation, what one perceives to be either unsupported by evidence or even outright undermined by evidence. In this way faith is essentially a matter of will and not just belief.  Simply having a belief that is unsupported or undermined by evidence [Read More...]

Disambiguating Faith: How Faith Poisons Religion

There are many wonderful parts of life that billions of people experience through a religious framework, at least partially to their benefit. Spiritual experiences mean a lot to many people and many people interpret their spiritual experience within the symbols, concepts, rituals, metaphysics, and community of their religious group. Rituals enrich people’s lives by giving [Read More...]

Why Bad Beliefs Don’t Die

The thoughts of Gregory W. Lester (as edited down by John W. Loftus) (okay, now I feel like calling myself Daniel W. Fincke): Because senses and beliefs are both tools for survival and have evolved to augment one another, our brain considers them to be separate but equally important purveyors of survival information….This means that [Read More...]

Disambiguating Faith: Faith Which Exploits Infinitesimal Probabilities As Openings For Strong Affirmations

Pete C. argues that because our comprehension is limited, it is hubris for us to rule out faith in things that alleged to go beyond it: I’m not sure where I fall in the spectrum of agnosticism (if i belong there at all) so I can’t really self identify. But I will offer an explanation [Read More...]

TOP Q (7): When, If Ever, Are Intellectual Mistakes Morally Culpable?

Can we morally blame people for failing to pursue the truth well enough or for employing irrational methods of belief formation?  Is belief something not in our volitional control at all?  Is it an entirely passive thing to “just believe” something?  Or even if we have some volitional control over what we believe, does it [Read More...]

Disambiguating Faith: Implicit Faith

In last night’s installment of the “Disambiguating Faith” series, I talked about the difference between, on the one hand, volitionally choosing to believe something that is either not rationally warranted or which is positively refuted by the available evidence, and, on the other hand, simply thinking one has rational warrant for one’s belief and yet [Read More...]

Disambiguating Faith: Defending My Definition Of Faith As “Belief Or Trust Beyond Rational Warrant”

Last week I responded to David Crowther’s argument that we should equally consider all beliefs that are not 100% certain to be “faith beliefs”.  I argued that the word “belief” already covers the fact that we are fallible human beings and as such even our most nearly 100% certain propositions about the world are always [Read More...]

Contortions Of Catholic Philosophy: Eve Tushnet Argues Gay Sex Is Not OK But Sex Changes Are

Tushnet’s moral choice for herself and for other gays is celibacy or gender reassignment. Of course for some people, specifically some of the transgendered, a sex change is entirely appropriate and preferable to gay sex because from a gender (rather than a sex) perspective, those who are pre-op transgendered and are attracted to members of their [Read More...]


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