“Wedding” Young Girls So They Can Be Executed

This story out of Iran is nightmarish and devastating to read: He said he had been a highly regarded member of the force, and had so “impressed my superiors” that, at 18, “I was given the ‘honor’ to temporarily marry young girls before they were sentenced to death.” In the Islamic Republic it is illegal [Read More...]

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Is Cohabitation A Bad Way To Trial Run Marriage?

This research suggests so: Those couples who had lived together before making a commitment to marriage (e.g., before getting engaged) reported significantly lower quality marriages and a greater potential for divorce than those who didn’t live together at all, or those who lived together only after getting engaged.The researchers’ findings remained significant even when they [Read More...]

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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...]

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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...]

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Can You Have A Heart Without Having “The Heart of God”?

In reply to my post on whether we need God to care about the poor around the world, Marianne offers this challenge: I have observed that atheists discuss and analyze poverty, but do very little about it. Most of the charities in the world are christian in foundation. You will find very few atheist charities [Read More...]

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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...]

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A Materialist View Of Transcendence

Greta Christina specifically addresses the meaning of sex from within a materialist’s mindset but her points can extend to more aspects of our experience as well, I think.  The transcendent aspect of sex and of numerous other aspects of our experience can be derived from our meditative realization that we are participating in processes that [Read More...]

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Is Karma Incompatible With Atheism?

An excellent question posed by a Scot, a reader at The Friendly Atheist. While Richard gives a fine answer supposing belief in a supernatural version of Karma, I find several of the comments interesting and more akin to the way I’ve used the term. Gary says: Actually, the word “karma” is sanskrit and simply means [Read More...]

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Further Towards A “Non-Moral” Standard Of Ethical Evaluation

In reply to a recent post, Tyler writes: Your definition of ethics and morality is well taken and allows for further interesting debate on culture and moral systems but it still requires assumption of benefit. Defining phrases like “fully flourishing life” and “most excellent characters we can develop” require a standard of evaluation which I [Read More...]

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