The Evolutionary Advantages And Present Disadvantages Of Our Conformist Minds

John Wilkins has a good post on the value of our minds’ readinesses to defer to authorities from an evolutionary standpoint: The evolutionary justification for this is, of course the following: if evolution were a designer, trying to ensure that thinking beings learned and knew what they had to to survive, a cheaper rule than [Read More...]

Are Sex and Morality Merely “Evolutionary Tricks”?

Francis Collins trots out a familiar old argument against atheism.  The argument is that if there is no God then our morality is an illusion.  Collins’s presentation of this argument features an unusual and suspicious spin.  Collins knows that arguments can be made from evolutionary psychology that broadly moral thinking seems to have evolved in [Read More...]

An Argument For Gay Marriage And Against Traditionalism

I am puzzled by appeals to history to oppose gay marriage because history is only the story of what people have done and never of itself directly tells us anything about right or wrong.  Results of history can serve as warnings about effective and uneffective approaches to goal x or goal y but what people [Read More...]

What Makes Humans Unique?

This is a fascinating, illuminating, and myth-debunking lecture from neurologist Robert Sapolsky.  He goes through a number of features of our nature, shows how they are shared with other animals and how we take these features to another level.  And in the end it’s paradoxical and inspirational. It’s long but worth the time. Thanks to [Read More...]

Peter Singer Argues We Must Ration Health Care

His article is long, here are just a few key pieces: In Britain, everyone has health insurance. In the U.S., some 45 million do not, and nor are they entitled to any health care at all, unless they can get themselves to an emergency room. Hospitals are prohibited from turning away anyone who will be [Read More...]

An Experimental Philosophy Manifesto

Portions of the book Experimental Philosophy including “An Experimental Philosophy Manifesto” by Joshua Knobe and Shaun Nichols can be read here, and Josh May and Jonathan Ichikawa discuss the manifesto here. Your Thoughts? [Read more...]

Is God Needed For Us To Care About Starving Kids A World Away?

A few weeks ago now, I wrote a post, Commitment To Value Without God, in which I discussed how even when I was a Christian, I realized that I did not need to make reference to God in order to either psychologically recognize the value of sumptuous food or good friendship or any of various [Read More...]

“Should You Try To Cure Gays?”

Your Thoughts? [Read more...]

Dawkins vs. Collins (Obama’s New NIH Selection)

RichardDawkins.net has reprinted a 2006 debate between Richard Dawkins and Francis Collins, the prominent (and now powerful) proponent of compatibility between religion and science who has recently been selected by Obama to head up the NIH.  The article has some really interesting moments, so I recommend you read it in full.  Here is what I [Read More...]


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