Archives for 2008

Living without God

Here's an interesting new book: Ronald Aronson's Living Without God: New Directions for Atheists, Agnostics, Secularists, and the Undecided.It's not a book that argues against the gods. Instead, Aronson writes for the reader who is already skeptical, but who is affected by the loss of confidence in secular politics and life stances that characterizes our time. He wants to start a conversation about where we can go and what we can do when we (secular people) can no longer subscribe to the myth of … [Read more...]

Trinity, schminity

I was listening to Hank Hanegraaff's Bible Answer Man today while driving. He was trying to explain the Trinity to a caller. It seemed weird, as if Hanegraaff was describing something he didn't understand to someone who was struggling even harder.You have to admire Christianity, in a backhanded way. There are no end of lunatic religious stories available in the world ( Xenu, anyone?), but I don't know of anything that compares to good old fashioned Christian theology when it comes to … [Read more...]

Top-down causation

Discussions of science and religion can be fascinating, particularly when they become an occasion to see how the world works very differently than what our commonsense intuitions prompt us to think. Religious thought typically follows our commonsense, anthropomorphic expectations, so I figure that talking about science and religion has to include explaining how religions get it wrong. But the payoff is really the science, not the religion-bashing.Sometimes, however, I confess that I don't get … [Read more...]

“Adversaries of piety and proof”

Peter Slezak of the University of New South Wales has an interesting article, "Adversaries of piety and proof", in November 19th's The Australian.It's rare to find a piece in the popular press that is this straightforward in explaining why naturalism is compelling and how theistic philosophers are engaged in special pleading. … [Read more...]

Ky. law requires Homeland Security to credit God

I did a double-take when an article came in through the News Wire containing this:State Rep. Tom Riner, a Southern Baptist minister who was instrumental in establishing that requirement in 2006, disapproves of the fact that Homeland Security doesn't currently mention God in its mission statement or on its Web site ...The law that organized the Homeland Security office first lists Homeland Security's duty to recognize that government itself can't secure the state without God, even before … [Read more...]

An Argument for Atheism – Part 5

In Chapter 2 of The God Delusion, Richard Dawkins gives an argument for atheism. The argument is a chain of reasoning consisting of five inferences. The first inference is a non sequitur, but I have attempted to rescue the argument by making explicit an unstated assumption, and by clarifying the first two premises:1a. Any creative intelligence, of sufficient complexity to design anything, comes into existence only as the end product of at least one million years of gradual evolution. A. The … [Read more...]

Myths of Islam

As with any other religion, there is plenty of material critical of Islam available on the web today. Some of it is even pretty decent as an introduction to problems with Islam.For example, there's the "Myths of Islam" page, part of the web site. It aims to get beyond some of the pro-Islamic propaganda that is easily available. And the web site of a whole seems like a good place to visit, if for some reason you enjoy staying up to date on outrages committed by the violent … [Read more...]

Christianity (warning: may be offensive to Christians)

I thought this funny, but I should warn readers that this image may be offensive to some readers. Click here if you are curious. … [Read more...]