100 Key Psychology Studies Repeated

This is a bit off topic, but psychology has important implications for understanding religious belief and the absence of religious belief and rejection of religious belief.  One hundred key psychology experiments published in three top psychology journals in 2008 were reproduced to see if the same results were obtained as the originally published experiment.  The bottom line: about 2/3 of the studies did not hold up in terms of statistical significance, and "very few of the redone studies c … [Read more...]

Atheist Revival Meeting

Folks, it has come to my attention that some other atheists on other sites are indicating that we here at SO are not real atheists. We may even be crypto-Christians who appear in atheist guise to delude the unfaithful. So, I and Jeff and Bradley—and you atheists who frequently comment, like Scott, Ryan, and PDH—are all under a cloud of suspicion. Well, we might as well admit it. We are backsliders. We are lukewarm in our unbelief. We occasionally show respect to theists, whereas furious, ven … [Read more...]

Stupid Atheist Meme #3: Freethinker = Atheist

LINK (to my old Secular Web article from 2001) … [Read more...]

Stupid Atheist Meme #2: “It is wrong always, everywhere, and for anyone, to believe anything upon insufficient evidence”

This is my second post in my series on stupid atheist memes. (For the previous entry, click here.) I'd like to discuss the following meme, coined by philosopher W.K. Clifford in his famous essay, "The Ethics of Belief." It is wrong always, everywhere, and for anyone, to believe anything upon insufficient evidence. While I am embarrassed to admit that, in my philosophical youth, I used to agree with this meme, I'm proud to say I got wiser.The problem with this meme (and the reason I think … [Read more...]

I Get Hate Tweets

While the Secular Outpost strives to promote a professional, respectful atmosphere, it's useful to be reminded that "Real Life" can sometimes be very different.Here's a case in point. A vitriolic, apparently (?) Catholic Twitter user with the handle (@NIGELTEAPOT) recently sent me a stream of 18 tweets before blocking me.Here's the context. Pastor Rick Henderson (author of the Huffington Post editorial I responded to a few days ago) and I were having an exchange:@Rick_says some do oth … [Read more...]

New Fossil Proves Genesis!

A new fossil discovery supports the Genesis account that snakes had legs before God cursed them for enticing Eve to eat of the forbidden fruit:http://conservativetribune.com/fossil-proof-of-bibles-story/?utm_source=Facebook&utm_medium=TPNNPages&utm_content=2015-07-28Call me a nitpicker, but I am still not satisfied!  After all, the serpent that "tempted" Eve was also quite loquacious, and not only loquacious, but, according to Genesis, was the most "subtle," i.e. cunning, of all … [Read more...]

Skeptical Theism and Evil Genius Arguments

When I debated William Lane Craig at Prestonwood Baptist Church in Dallas in 1998, we also had an exchange in the Dallas Morning News on the problem of evil. Here is a key quote from Craig’s statement:“We aren't in a good position to assess with confidence the probability (or improbability) of whether God has morally sufficient reasons for permitting bad things. Suffering that appears utterly pointless within our limited framework may be seen to be justly permitted in God's wider framework. T … [Read more...]

Christianity: The Good Stuff

Naturally, an atheist site like this SO often focuses on the bad stuff about Christianity. Digging up the dirt is easy since, after 2000 years of Christian history, there are tons and tons of it just lying around ready to be shoveled. It is important to remember, however, that for all the holy warriors, fanatics, hypocrites, obscurantists, and sanctimonious little busybodies, Christianity has appealed to some of the noblest spirits that have graced human history (e.g. Pascal, Erasmus, St. … [Read more...]