20+ Questions for Theists

(This post was last edited on 21-Jun-12, by reorganizing the list into a more logical sequence. I apologize in advance for the inconvenience this may cause to people who have posted comments or their own articles discussing these.)As a follow-up to my last post, I compiled a list of my own questions for theists. I'm sure readers will have many of their own to add.The question "Why is there something rather than nothing" presupposes "nothing" as being  the normal state of affairs. Why … [Read more...]

LINK: The Problem with Everlasting Punishment

LINK … [Read more...]

Gay Marriage on a U.S. Military Base and the Religious Right’s Hypocrisy

Apparently there was a wedding ceremony for two lesbians in the base chapel at Fort Polk in Louisiana, conducted by one of the base chaplains.Not surprisingly, the Radical Religious Right (RRR) is outraged. Here are some of the quotations from the Fox News site:“The liberal social experiment with our military continues,” Rep. John Fleming (R-LA) told Fox News Radio. “A same-sex marriage-like ceremony should not have occurred at Fort Polk, especially since the people of Louisiana have made it a … [Read more...]

Swinburne’s Teleological Argument from Spatial Order

In Chapter 8 of The Existence of God, 2nd edition (hereafter: EOG), Richard Swinburne defends two teleological arguments for the existence of God.  The first one he calls the Teleological Argument from Temporal Order (TATO).  The factual premise of TATO is that a universe governed by simple natural laws exists.  The second argument he calls the Teleological Argument from Spatial Order (TASO).  The factual premise of TASO is that a universe (governed by simple natural … [Read more...]

20 Loaded Questions

Peter Saunders has compiled a list of 20 questions for atheists. "He says he did not post these claiming atheists do not have an answer to these questions, but that there have not been any decent responses to them in the past 40yrs" (italics mine). It's one thing to say the responses were not persuasive; it's another thing to say that none of the answers are decent. Based on this description, Saunders sounds like a highly partisan apologist, not someone worth trying to convince.On the other … [Read more...]

Where is the Outcry from Theists Against the BSA’s Reason for Its Policy of Discrimination against Nontheists?

I want to begin by clarifying that I am not raising a constitutional or legal question at all. Let's assume that the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) have the constitutional right to associate or not associate with whoever they wish.I'm coming at this from a very different angle. Again, I'm stipulating that the BSA has the legal right to exclude atheists and agnostics from membership. But what if their reason for choosing to exercise that right is flawed? Let's conduct a thought experiment. … [Read more...]

Theist-Atheist Discourse: Some Thoughts on Victor Reppert’s Post

Victor Reppert and I have been having a productive and healthy exchange about the tone of theist-atheist discourse. If you haven't already seen it, I encourage you to read his latest post on the topic.Disclosure Before commenting on his post, I want to provide a sort of "disclosure" statement about biases, similar to what you might find in a peer-reviewed medical journal article about a new drug. I am not a so-called 'New Atheist.' In fact, I don't even care for that label, since I think there … [Read more...]

Do Atheists Concede the Ground of Death Too Easily? A Reply to Greta Christina

According to Greta Christina, atheists concede the ground of death too easily. She quotes or paraphrases the following sentiment.“Sure, atheism may have better arguments and evidence. But religion is always to going to win on the death question. A secular philosophy of death will never comfort people the way religion does.”In response, she writes,I’ve heard this idea more times than I can count. And here’s the weird thing: It’s not just from religious believers. I hear it from atheists, too. … [Read more...]