The Collar That Choked Open Hearts

This following is a guest post by Pat Green, cross-posted with permission from his blog Night Moves: Diary of a Chicago Area Cabbie ex-Preacher Man. When I first started driving a taxi I was still an ordained minister. The church was a mere remnant of what it once was, but I was still active in my denomination’s committees and the youth outreach was still running. What was left of me as a minister was still trying desperately to continue on…. Read more

Before I Deconverted: I Saw My First “Secular Humanist” On TV

In the Christianity I grew up with in the ’90s, humanism was a dirty word. Reading the monthly alarmist political propaganda newsletter from Focus on the Family which came to our house, I remember most distinctly learning about the secular humanist monster Norman Lear. Norman Lear, I learned, was the television writer and producer most responsible for All in the Family and The Jeffersons in the ’70s. In the ’80s he founded the evil liberal organization “People for the American Way”. For some reason… Read more

Alix Jules On Being An African American Humanist

Below find a really good video from Alix Jules on his religious journey, his experience as a black humanist, and the ways that blacks’ relationships to religion are less black and white than often painted. Alix Jules is one of our new bloggers on Patheos’s atheism channel. You can read his blog at The Graffiti Wall. Here’s the rundown on who he is and what he’s been doing: Alix Jules is a secular activist in the Dallas – Ft. Worth area commonly… Read more

Why Would Being Controlled By A Brain Be Any Less Free Than Being Controlled By An Immaterial Soul?

Existential Comics has nicely illustrated a common line of debate between hard determinists and soft determinists/compatibilists in comic strip form. The whole strip is worth reading. The “compatibilist” in the comic strip represents my own position nicely throughout and is especially effective in the panels excerpted below. The panels below reply to the claim that were we to have immaterial souls that controlled what we did we would be free but that lacking such souls and instead having our brains’… Read more

Comparing Humanism and Religion and Exploring Their Relationships to Each Other

Tonight I was interviewed by Mike Phelps on The Age of Reason podcast. The topic was set as “Humanism vs. Religion” but I used a lot of my time to break down that neat dichotomy. The discussion was far ranging as we talked about the nature of humanism, the natures of religions, the relative strengths and weaknesses of both humanism and religion, the possibilities for humanists to learn from religion, the relationship between religion and art, the ideal relationship between… Read more

Funishment

One of the best comics out there for philosophy topics is Ryan Lake’s Chaos Pet. His latest is a hilarious exploration of a number of philosophical ideas about punishment. Here’s how it starts: Click over to the full cartoon at Chaos Pet to see what’s going on…   And, of course, to explore all the ins and outs of punishment and other aspects of justice in-depth, take either my Social and Political Philosophy class or my Ethics one! Read more

ISIS’s Iconoclasm, The Bible, and The Problem With Taking Literalism Literally

The following is a guest post from Alexandra, an ex-Christian. Recently, disturbing footage of ISIS destroying priceless historical sculptures, some from the Assyrian empire, has been released to the press. Seeing the video reminded me of when I was an evangelical Christian, trying to figure out how to be faithful to the first two of the Ten Commandments in a modern context. In Exodus 20:1-6 they read: And God spoke all these words: “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out… Read more

A Photographer On Why The Same Dress Looks Black and Blue to Some and Gold and White to Others #DressGate

In the video below, photographer (and friend of Camels With Hammers) Mallorie Nasrallah shows us how to figure out what’s going on with the dress that some people see as gold and white and others see as black and blue: Your Thoughts? Read more

A Moral Philosopher on The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson

Jonathan Dancy, the moral particularist who wrote Ethics without Principles, is the father of actor Hugh Dancy, who is married to the actress Claire Danes. This led to him getting to appear on The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson: Your Thoughts? Read more

“The History of Philosophy” and “Philosophy and Suicide”

I have a new class on the History of Philosophy which you can join and which starts tomorrow, Monday February 23, at 9am Eastern Time. It will regularly run every Monday from 9am-11am for as long as students are interested and it will cover the entire history of philosophy, at whatever pace students are most comfortable with. Even if you can’t make it tomorrow, you can join us starting the following week. If you’ve never attended my classes before the first week will be free! I also am teaching an example session of my classes tonight at 8pm Eastern Time) for those who have never attended before (or for $39.99 for returning students who would just like to sit in and learn about the topic). Tonight’s topic is Philosophy and Suicide. Read below for the official course descriptions. Click through for course details. Read more

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