Argument Against the Resurrection of Jesus – Part 12

I have previously examined the implications of the supposition that (JAW) is not the case:(JAW) Jesus was alive and walking around unassisted on the first Easter Sunday.Now I'm going to start looking into the implications of the supposition that (JAW) is the case.There are many ways to divide up the logical pie, but I propose to analyze(JAW) into eleven different logical possibilities:Acronyms for key claims related to Jesus’s alleged resurrection:JAW = Jesus was alive and walking around on the f … [Read more...]

Finding Reason in the Season

I once believed in miracles because my parents told me they were true, but even then I recognized that all miracles were not created equal. The Hanukkah miracle of a light burning for eight days instead of just one paled in comparison to the Pesach miracle, when a God decided to “pass-over” the houses of Jews and kill the firstborn Egyptian male in each home along with the firstborn cattle (Exodus 12:12). Hanukkah, of course, while a major holiday in this country, did not become one for the … [Read more...]

Links and News — 19-Dec-11

Housekeeping"Secular Outpost Revamped"Ex-Apologist favorably mentions recent changes at The Secular Outpost.[Editor's Note (Lowder): Thanks!]"The Skeptic Awards 2011"The Skeptic Magazine plans to give awards for several types of skeptical activity, including "Best Blog." [Editor's Note (Lowder): Please consider voting for The Secular Outpost!]Miscellaneous"Bellingham Lectures in Philosophy of Religion"These lectures, which will be streamed online, will include talks by Jeffrey Schloss and … [Read more...]

Louise Antony’s NYT Editorial on Good without God

LINK (HT: Ex-Apologist) … [Read more...]

The Definition of Atheism, the Anal-Retentive Defense of Etymological Purism, and Linguistic Relativism

Back when I was the moderator of the USENET newsgroup alt.atheism.moderated, I used to debate the definition of atheism and I used to defend the atheism as the lack of belief position. I'm persuaded, however, by Ted Drange that by default we should define our terms in a way which matches ordinary usage. Ordinary usage of the word "atheism" is that it means the belief that God does not exist. I see no benefit whatsoever to the proposal that nontheists should spend their limited time on trying to … [Read more...]

Recent Discussion of My Old List, “How to be an Atheist Apologist”

I haven't been a regular, active participant on message boards for years, but I recently decided to participate in the thread at Rational Skepticism about my 2006 post, "How to be an Atheist Apologist." The topics we've discussed include:Is the concept of an "atheist apologist" even coherent or is just a contradiction in terms?Where was the sarcasm in my post? Was there any sarcasm in my post?Introduction to basic terminology in Bayesian confirmation theory, e.g., prior probability, explanatory … [Read more...]

Argument Against the Resurrection of Jesus – Part 11

A key claim made by Christian apologists who defend the resurrection goes like this: (JAW) Jesus of Nazareth was alive and walking around unassisted on the first Easter Sunday.This claim is either true or it is not. In posts 7 through 10 of this series, I have been examining the implications of the supposition that (JAW) is not true. This supposition appears to represent five different logical possibilities, as illustrated in the following diagram.JIM = Jesus is a myth.JA = Jesus was alive on … [Read more...]

Christopher Hitchens RIP

Dear Bleaders,I wrote a little essay on Christopher Hitchens and the meaning of life and death for the Ottawa Citizen called "For Atheists This Life is Enough." Maybe have a look? Maybe tell me what you think.x Jennifer … [Read more...]