What is Christianity? Part 9

As Ninian Smart points out, there are secular worldviews as well as religious worldviews.   A religion is a religious worldview as opposed to a secular worldview.  Marxism and Secular Humanism are examples of secular worldviews.  Christianity, Buddhism, Judaism, and Islam are examples of religions or religious worldviews.Smart, however, asserts that worldviews (both religious and secular) encompass six dimensions:The doctrinal or philosophical dimensionThe narrative or mythic di … [Read more...]

The Resurrection: A Critical Inquiry – Part 1

In this series I will discuss a recently published book called The Resurrection: A Critical Inquiry (hereafter: TRACI).  It is not my intention to DO a critical inquiry into the (alleged) resurrection of Jesus in these posts.  Rather, I will be describing and commenting on the efforts of Michael J. Alter, the author of TRACI, to do a critical inquiry into the (alleged) resurrection of Jesus.I often complain about the intellectual laziness of Christian apologists.  I have dozens of books by Ch … [Read more...]

Hope for a Brighter Future – Part 2

In the previous post on this topic I pointed to a recent study which showed that belief in God is on the decline in the United States.  Some people, however, have a difficult time accepting this fact, and in order to avoid this "unpleasant" reality engage in various forms of uncritical thinking.  Joe Hinman, for example, seems to be hell bent on rejecting the facts that contradict his wishes and desires on this matter, and as a result he provides us with a clear example of how NOT to think.   … [Read more...]

Why Nobody Should Believe that Jesus Rose from the Dead

First of all, extradordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, but there is only weak evidence that Jesus rose from the dead:The evidence that Jesus was crucified in Jerusalem and died on the cross on the same day he was crucified is weak. The evidence that Jesus was alive and walking around in Jerusalem less than 48 hours after he was crucified is weak. IF the evidence that Jesus was crucified in Jerusalem and died on the cross on the same day he was crucified is weak and the e … [Read more...]

Sean Carroll’s List of 6 Arguments Used by Science Denialists

Sean B. Carroll is a noted evolutionary biologist, author, and vice-president for science education at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. I haven't read his book, The Making of theFittest: DNA and the Ultimate Forensic Record of Evolution, but I'm told it contains a summary of 6 arguments used by science denialists that could be applied to most any subject.   Here are the 6 arguments.Cast doubt on the science. Question the scientists' motives and integrity. Magnify any disagreements … [Read more...]

I Don’t Care – Part 6

Aquinas is often thought of as a rigourously logical and systematic thinker.  This is only half-true.  There is a good deal of vaguness, ambiguity, and illogical thinking in his book Summa Theologica, as far as I can see.Here is a cautionary note from a philosopher who is an expert on Aquinas:From the concept of God as ipsum esse subsistens, Thomas deduces certain other properties which must belong to God [i.e. in order to prove that "God", in the ordinary sense of the word, exists].  T … [Read more...]

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia Has Died

The Governor of the State of Texas issued a press release on the passing of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia:"Justice Antonin Scalia was a man of God, a patriot, and an unwavering defender of the written Constitution and the Rule of Law. He was the solid rock who turned away so many attempts to depart from and distort the Constitution. His fierce loyalty to the Constitution set an unmatched example, not just for judges and lawyers, but for all Americans. We mourn his passing, … [Read more...]

Does God Exist? Part 2

Here is a third option for breaking down the question "Does God exist?" (click on the image below to get a clearer view of the chart):         This is a variation on Option 2 (see the previous post in this series).In this analysis I stick with the process of simply adding on divine attributes to the creator in order to build up to the full traditional concept of God, or something close to the full … [Read more...]