‘No more virgins’ Corrected VersionAccording to the UK’s Daily Mall, Saudi Arabia’s highest religious council has warned that repealing a ban on women drivers in Saudi Arabia would result in “no more virgins.” The Daily Mall states that the religious council’s report “warns that allowing women to drive would ‘provoke a surge in prostitution, pornography, homosexuality and divorce’.” Futhermore, “Within ten years of the ban being lifted, the report’s authors claim, there would be ‘no more virgins’ in the… Read more

The Internet Infidels News Wire linked to a story today about a Pennsylvania town which refuses to include an atheist banner as part of a holiday display. I understand the church-state issues involved, but I scratch my head when I try to make sense of the public relations strategy of the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) here. I understand why they want to have a holiday display to represent atheism alongside religious displays, but I don’t understand what they hope… Read more

Moment of Zen”I *Can* Get Satisfaction!” by John S. Wilkins (@Evolving Thoughts)Interactions Between Secular Outpost Authors and Theistic Blog AuthorsLowder:With Matthew Flannagan regarding Jerry Coyne’s editorial on goodness without God: Flannagan’s initial post, Lowder’s response, Flannagan’s response, Lowder’s response, Flannagan’s response, my response.Parsons:”This is Parsons’ Critique of Kreeft and Tacelli on Hallucinations” by Victor Reppert. The post doesn’t contain much content, but the comments are interesting.[Editor’s Note (Parsons): For a revised and more detailed version of these arguments, see my… Read more

In 1976, the Christian philosopher Norman Geisler published a book titled: Christian Apologetics (Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, Michigan). In Chapter 17, Geisler argues for “The deity and authority of Jesus Christ”. A portion of that chapter is devoted to Geisler’s case for the resurrection of Jesus.In my view it is ridiculous to the point of being pathetic, that Geisler thinks he can prove the resurrection of Jesus in just 5.3 pages (p. 346 – 351). I would expect such… Read more

Two general comments. First, I am uninterested in matters of Salmon’s interpretation of Hume, so I’m going to skip over that issue in its entirety.[10] Second, it seems to me that the idea of using a frequency interpretation of probability for assigning probability values to ultimate metaphysical posits is fundamentally misguided;[11] I think the epistemic interpretation of probability would be much more appropriate for the context. A. The Argument Against an Unspecified Intelligent Designer Since Salmon himself admits that the… Read more

If you want something done right, then (sometimes) you have to do it yourself.I now know what my next project will be. Since, to the best of my knowledge, no Christian philosopher or apologist has made a good case for the resurrection of Jesus, I am going to build the first good case for the resurrection.First, I need to finish the article on Swinburne’s case for God. That article was supposed to be finished a year ago, and I still… Read more

Dear Bleaders,I’m getting the sense that atheism in these parts (’round this url) is not as, shall we say “taken for granted” as it is in my usual conversations. A good number of my usual conversations take place in my head, the ones that involve other people are still usually in New York City, and failing that, often in universities, and in any number of reform religious temples and churches that invite me to speak, i.e. I go from one… Read more

As I read him, Salmon presents multiple arguments against the design hypothesis. Let us consider the logical form of each argument in turn. Note that all of the argument labels are mine; Salmon does not label any of his arguments in his essay. A. The Argument Against an Unspecified Intelligent Designer This is the argument Salmon sketches in section 3 of his essay. Let A be any instance of coming-into-being; B be any instance of the operation of intelligence; and… Read more

Theodore M. DrangeTed Drange just me the following response to Vasko Kohlmayer’s column, “Atheism: Why It is Logically Incoherent.”Toward the end of his essay, the author writes:But even as the atheist tries to make his point, he unwittingly falls into a trap: If his worldview were true, then the principle of non-contradiction – or any other rule of logic – would be void of meaning.Why? Because within atheism reality is ultimately composed of only matter and motion. If atheism is… Read more

Many religious believers and atheists alike express regret at the crass materialism shown this time of year, when Thanksgiving now represents the prelude to a shopping spree for Christmas presents on “Black Friday.” I gained an appalling insight watching television on the Saturday after “Black Friday.” First I saw frenzied crowds of Egyptian protesters in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, risking their lives to demand freedom. Then I saw frenzied crowds of American shoppers, trying to push others aside to save a… Read more

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