William Provine on Evolutionary Naturalism and Morality

Cornell University biologist William Provine debated UC Berkeley law professor in 1998. (Click here for a link to the transcript.) In his opening statement, Provine made the following provocative assertion. Let me summarize my views on what modern evolutionary biology tells us loud and clear — and these are basically Darwin’s views. There are no gods, no purposes, and no goal-directed forces of any kind. There is no life after death. When I die, I am absolutely certain that I am going to be dead … [Read more...]

Another Failed Defense of “The Inevitable Consequences of an Atheist Worldview”

Steve Hays has commented on my previous post, "Fact Checking the Inevitable Consequences of an Atheist Worldview." That post was a detailed summary and refutation of eight specific claims. Hays does not interact with any of the specific claims. Rather, he makes general points about my post as a whole. Here is Hays: Over at the Secular outpost, Jeff Lowder took issue with what an ostensible atheist said about “The Inevitable Consequences of an Atheist Worldview”. Jeff's attempted rebuttal is mud … [Read more...]

Fact-Checking “The Inevitable Consequences of an Atheist Worldview”

Earlier this year, J. Warner Wallace reposted on his blog something written by an anonymous writer which describes "the inevitable consequence of an atheist worldview." Wallace gives the writer the nickname "John." I want to comment on "John's" comments as well as Wallace's commentary.Before I address "John's" remarks, I first need to point out a fundamental error in the title of the post. Like many theistic non-philosophers who do apologetics, Wallace misuses the expression "inevitable co … [Read more...]

Link: Why Science Cannot Explain Why Anything At All Exists by Luke Barnes

Physicist and cosmologist Luke Barnes wrote an interesting post in his blog a while ago about why science cannot explain why anything at all exists. I'm inclined to agree with him. Here is how he summarizes his own argument in his own words. A: The state of physics at any time can be (roughly) summarised by three things.1. A statement about what the fundamental constituents of physical reality are and what their properties are. 2. A set of mathematical equations describing how these … [Read more...]

Links Do Not Constitute Endorsement

This is just a very quick post to remind readers that when I post links, my doing so does not necessarily mean I endorse the link unless I explicitly say that I do. I would have thought this was obvious but apparently I'm going to need to state this on every post going forward in which I post a link.I'm going to resist the temptation to tag this post with the label "Village Theist," however, as I consider that both childish and rude. … [Read more...]

Link: Darwin’s Argument from Evil by Paul Draper

Draper's chapter was published in Yujin Nagasawa (ed.), Scientific Approaches to the Philosophy of Religion. Palgrave Macmillan. 49 (2012). It's available online for free courtesy of Google Books.LINK … [Read more...]

Link: Intended and Unintended Life by Brooke Alan Trisel

I am quoting the abstract of Trisel's paper here, without comment pro or con, for interested readers who may wish to read the paper for themselves. Feel free to debate in the combox. Abstract. Some people feel threatened by the thought that life might have arisen by chance. What is it about “chance” that some people find so threatening? If life originated by chance, this suggests that life was unintended and that it was not inevitable. It is ironic that people care about whether life in general … [Read more...]

Link: Why the Argument from Causal Closure Against the Existence of Immaterial Things is Bad

I am quoting the abstract of this paper here, without comment pro or con, for interested readers who may wish to read the paper for themselves. Feel free to debate in the combox. Abstract. Some argue for materialism claiming that a physical event cannot have a non-physical cause, or by claiming the 'Principle of Causal Closure' to be true. This I call a 'Sweeping Naturalistic Argument'. This article argues against this. It describes what it would be for a material event to have an immaterial c … [Read more...]