Before I Deconverted: I Was Baptized 25 Years Ago Today

This picture illustrates the Church of Christ's status as the Only True Christian Church™.

August 20, 1989, at the Port Jefferson Church of Christ, my older brother Richard baptized me as a Christian. Richard was a minister (though that wasn’t necessary in our churches to baptized) and at the time he was the person I most wanted to emulate in life. The choice to get baptized was a huge [Read More...]

Before I Deconverted: I Dabbled With Calvinism In College (Everyone Was Doing It)

I’m writing a series of posts about my Christian upbringing and the philosophical and personal road to my deconversion. Often it is easy for atheists, especially for those who never were serious religious believers, to not understand how religious thinking works from the inside. What counts as evidence for or against theological propositions when you [Read More...]

Occupy Heaven

Mr. Deity’s captives beloved subjects are unsatisfied for a number of reasons: I examined arguments that hell is God’s favor to those who just don’t want to be with him in my post Hell as the Absence of God (a fictional dialogue between my characters Jaime and Robin). Although I think there are ways to [Read More...]

Why Bother Blaming People At All? Isn’t That Just Judgmental?

Before moving on to addressing the question of when it is right or wrong to get offended, let me quickly address a certain attitude that arises a lot in response to my posts on morality. I sense in the tone of a lot of comments I get in general that there is a fear of [Read More...]

What It Means To Me To Be Free

I think that in some meaningful ways, human beings are free. In a couple of previous posts and in subsequent comments in their comments sections, I have been arguing for the ways that we are not free in a libertarian sense, i.e., our actions are not “undetermined” by forces outside our fundamental control. We are [Read More...]

Internecine War At Freethought Blogs: Philosopher vs. "Redneck" Edition: Free Will And The Real World Smackdown

As far as I have noticed, there has not been a blog war between any of the Freethought Blogs (or, er, since we all moved here anyway) so I was a little trepidatious of going and picking apart the every word of a quick comment on one of my posts by my new favorite blogger, Hank [Read More...]

The "Moral Argument" For Free Will Is A Morally Troubling, Hypocritical, Faith Position

Many who believe that we have free will are what philosophers call “libertarians”. These are not necessarily libertarians in the political sense but in a metaphysical sense. Libertarians conceive of free will as incompatible with determinism. Their notion is that to the extent that our actions are determined by forces or factors which are beyond [Read More...]

Jonathan Glover On The Consciences Of Sociopaths

The moral philosopher Jonathan Glover interviewed a number of anti-social people, including psychopaths, who have committed serious crimes and live in secure hospitals in order to investigate how they think about right and wrong and what sort of conscience they have.  He thinks they have a conscience, but one unlike others’. They have strong feelings [Read More...]

TOP Q (7): When, If Ever, Are Intellectual Mistakes Morally Culpable?

Can we morally blame people for failing to pursue the truth well enough or for employing irrational methods of belief formation?  Is belief something not in our volitional control at all?  Is it an entirely passive thing to “just believe” something?  Or even if we have some volitional control over what we believe, does it [Read More...]


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