Critical Thinking is Bigotry

Check Out the American Family Association's (AFA) online "Anti-Christian Bigotry" map. (Sorry, I can't provide the link) It has a map of North America listing atheist, humanist, GLBT, and "anti-Christian" (e.g. FFRF) groups. All of these groups are engaged in anti-Christian bigotry according to the AFA. For instance, they say of humanists groups: "Believes critical thinking and physical evidence are the sole basis for beliefs. Humanists believe science triumphs [sic] faith in issues of morality a … [Read more...]

Interview with Prof. Axgrind

I am presenting to the readers of Secular Outpost my exclusive interview with Professor Hugo Axgrind, Professor of Revisionist History and Head of The Center for Medieval Exoneration at the University of St. Torquemada. I am interviewing Prof. Axgrind about his new book A New Edition of the Spanish Inquisition.Parsons: Professor Axgrind, I understand that your stated purpose in writing your book was “To correct the accumulated calumnies directed against the Spanish Inquisition and the men w … [Read more...]

ISIS Violence IS Religious

This is from The Atlantic Monthly: is an excellent rebuttal to those who want to claim that there is no specifically religious violence, and that groups, such as ISIS, are violent for political or economic reasons and only use religion as a cover. A key quote from the essay notes that non-religious factors, must, of course, be acknowledged, but also notes the peculiar blindness of commentators who want to … [Read more...]

Jonah Goldberg Defends the Christian Record

Right-wing columnist--and now Christian apologist--Jonah Goldberg says that President Obama's statements about the dark side of Christian history are "horse pucky": to Goldberg, the Crusades were defensive wars and the Inquisition was a humanitarian intervention to stop the abuses of secular authorities. He says that the abuses of the medieval Church was due to the fact that it was "medieval" not that i … [Read more...]

Heaven would be Boring as Hell

Here are ten reasons why heaven would be insufferably dull: upshot seems to be that heaven would be tolerable only if it were a lot more like the present life. In that case, why bother?BTW, I notice that Prof. Jerry L. Walls, a leading evangelical writer on the afterlife, has a new book coming out on heaven, hell, and purgatory. Looking at the TOC on Amazon, several pages seem to be a rebuttal to critical … [Read more...]

Valerie Tarico on the Most Harmful Religious Ideas

We have had an interesting discussion about Karen Armstrong's essay "The Myth of Religious Violence." While it is nice to engage with such erudite essays, it is also nice to find something  that cuts right through the fog and lays everything out. As a short summary of the harm that religion has done, I think it is hard to beat this one. Maybe we could say even more succinctly that monotheism is the worst idea anybody ever ha … [Read more...]

Is Religious Violence a Myth?

Karen Armstrong is a prolific author on topics in comparative religion. She is a former nun and liberal Christian who has a gift for writing that is both scholarly and readable. I admire her book A History of God, a genuine tour-de-force that traces the history of monotheism, showing how the concept of God has evolved from age to age and from culture to culture. Last September, in the wake of the horrific attacks by ISIS she published an essay in The Guardian titled “The Myth of Religious V … [Read more...]

Terrorist Outrage in Paris

I am angry. Very angry. We know that Islamic fanatics are mad dogs whose very humanity has been consumed by their devotion to a rabid religion. We have seen them massacre whole communities of innocent people for no reason other than religious bigotry. We have seen them kidnap hundreds of girls and young women then sneeringly taunt the loved ones of their victims. We have seen them murder and mutilate other girls for the crime of seeking an education. Today’s murderous attack on the offices of C … [Read more...]