On The Virtue Of Patriotism

I think the MaverickPhilosopher‘s construal of the virtue of patriotism is generally on target and consistent with my framework for understanding the virtue of pride (which would be important since patriotism is, manifestly, a sub-species of pride) and humility (which I essentially wrote last week and am almost ready to post).  The maverick one writes: Patriotism, [Read More...]

“Testimony: He Or His Apparition”

From Three Poems by Nicole Cooley: Testimony: He or His Apparition About noon, at Salem, Giles Corey was press’d to death for standing Mute. — Samuel Sewall, Diary, September 19, 1692 The girls’ testimony is gravel scattered on the grass. Ann Putnam: Giles Corey or his Apperance has most greviously afflected me by beating pinching and almost [Read More...]

Rightful Pride: Identification With One’s Own Admirable Powers And Effects

Pride is essentially the personal identification with something admirable.  When I am rightly proud of my traits, I rightly take the traits themselves each to be admirable in one way or another and rightly take myself to be admirable insofar as they are part of me and expressions of me.  When I am rightly proud [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...]

The Christian Logic Of Power, Pride, Humility, Free Will, Original Sin, And All-Consuming Divine Narcissism

Pride has traditionally been disparaged by Christianity as not only a vice but as the chief vice. Christianity has gone so far as to recommend humility as one of the highest virtues for a human being. The theological reasons for this begin with the way that traditional Christianity understands human beings primarily relationally, as in [Read More...]

Michael Sandel On “The Lost Art Of Democratic Debate”

A good video from Harvard philosopher Michael Sandel, who recently wrote a book on justice for a popular audience, Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do?, and who last year released on YouTube high production value videos encapsulating his lectures for his standard introductory level ethics class at Harvard. You can start watching those videos here. [Read More...]

Differently Abled Or Simply More Virtuous In One Respect

Earlier today, I made a post comparing the different routes which atheists and those with Asperger’s syndrome take to their naturalistic explanations of causes of events that more religiously inclined people tend to chalk up to supernatural agency.  Whereas religious people would attribute an illness or finding their true love to the purposeful forces, like God’s [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...]


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