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...]

A Dictatorship Of Relativism?

BBC Radio 4 analyzes the pope’s catchphrase, “a dictatorship of relativism”, used for describing the secular West.  Here’s the program description: The idea that no one has a monopoly on the truth seems to be fixed in the modern Western psyche. But it’s an idea that is under attack. Pope Benedict claims that we are [Read More...]

Disambiguating Faith: Why Faith Is Unethical (Or “In Defense Of The Ethical Obligation To Always Proportion Belief To Evidence”)

A couple of weeks ago, I argued that there was a real distinction between “lacking a belief in any God or gods” on the one hand and “believing there is no God (or gods)” on the other hand.  Primarily I saw the heart of the distinction as resting with the difference between on the one [Read More...]

Some Suspicions About The Superiority Of Liberal Moral Values

Earlier today, I drew attention to Greta Christina’s article formulating some ideas she picked up from Rebecca Newberger Goldstein.  If you have already read either or both of those posts, you can just skip the next two paragraphs meant to catch up new readers. The Goldstein/Greta Christina argument built off of Jonathan Haidt’s theory of [Read More...]

True And False In Adam And Eve

Yesterday I replied to Mary Midgley’s article out this weekend, which claimed that evolutionary theory does not refute Genesis since Genesis was not meant to be a literal description of how God made the world. In reply I revisted remarks and videos that I posted last fall which overviewed the ways that even if we [Read More...]

Moral Actions, Moral Sentiments, Moral Motives, and Moral Justifications: More On The Nun Excommunicated For Approving A Life-Saving Abortion

In reply to my post on the story of Sister Margaret McBride whom the Catholic Church “automatically excommunicated” for helping to give the go-ahead to an abortion claimed necessary for saving the life of an 11 week pregnant mother, I have already received two interesting replies.  The first challenged the medical argument for the necessity of [Read More...]

A Challenge To Christians To Unqualifiedly Condemn Genocide

Christians who defend the Old Testament genocides are guilty of either relativistic authoritarianism (anything can be okay as long as God wills it and His will has simply changed from the Old Testament days to the New Testament one) or, possibly worse, theoretical agreement with all the normal justifications of genocide as long as God [Read More...]

Is Reason My God 4: On Reason As An Authority

Even though this post is “part 4″ of a reply to the same commentator, it can be understood without reading prior installments.  If you would like to catch up with prior installments nonetheless, here are parts 1, 2, and 3. In reply to this post, Grant writes: Appealing to the authority of reason is the [Read More...]

Philosophical Ethics: “But Why MUST I?” Kant’s Ironic Formulation Of Liberty As Duty

In a series of posts this semester, I am going to blog all (or almost all) the lecture topics for the two Philosophical Ethics classes I am teaching this semester. Each of these posts will primarily explicate the reading or a theme that dominated class discussion in a way that should be accessible to novices [Read More...]


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