web analytics

Tag: philosophical naturalism

The Explanatory Fallacy

I am not familiar enough with formal logic to know if I am coining a new term or describing a fallacy for the first time.  Google was no help.  If you can help, I’d be happy to hear it, but first you ought to read further to make sure you know what I’m talking about.

In the nearly 20 years or so of debating with various kinds of non-Christians, I have often encountered a way of thinking that I think is self-evidently flawed, but oddly common nonetheless.  What I mean is this:  as soon as you press the point, they … continue reading...

Atheism as ‘Gateway Drug’ to Drifting Away

As of this writing, I am facilitating a course/discussion regarding the decline of Christianity in America.  Someone made a point in the discussion that is similar to one I’ve made previously… but I can’t find where I made it so I’m making it anew.  🙂

The question begins with a look at the measured increase in self-identified ‘religious nones’ in America since around 1990.  (This data can be found linked to here.)  In 1990, some 8% of Americans identified themselves as having no religion.  Today, that figure has doubled.  In the meantime, there has been a drop in … continue reading...

Scientism: The Atheist’s Religion of Faith

I’m getting some hits regarding scientism but don’t actually have any posts dedicated to it.  I thought if I’m going to be looked at on the subject I should make at least a few deliberate comments.  They should not be construed, however, as exhaustive.

Scientism can refer to a few different ideas and I denounce them all. 🙂  It goes without saying that people who exhibit ‘scientism’ would not use the word to describe themselves and they will resent the suggestion that they are as described.

Because this post is pretty lengthy here is a list of the headings in … continue reading...

Transcendence and Immanence, Logic and Superlogic- and Sublogic

Orthodox Christianity holds that God is both a transcendent entity and immanent.  If you understand what Christians propose to be true about God, you understand why both attributes follow necessarily.  All religions boil down to some expression of one of these two attributes, usually to the exclusion of one to the other.   Deism, for example, emphasizes transcendence and despises immanence.  Various forms of paganism emphasize immanence, that is they identify ‘God’ with the universe and reject that there is a God ‘outside’ it.  Even atheism takes a position here:  naturalism is just another variation on immanence and ‘God’ is just … continue reading...

Santa Claus is Real and so is Jesus

It is that time of year again when a holiday becomes the front in a culture battle.  I need not give examples- google Dan Barker and the Freedom from Religion Foundation.   It is not uncommon to find skeptics and secular humanists insinuating with a sneer that belief in God is exactly like belief in Santa Claus, the only difference being that people grow out of belief in Santa Claus.  Atheists who think this way have no problem being contemptuous punks because in their mind, given the similarities between the two examples (in their mind), a person who still believes in … continue reading...

Who made God? Who made the Universe? Chicken, meet the Egg

The question ‘Who made God’ is one of the first questions a young child asks.  It is an obvious question with a difficult to comprehend answer.  The problem is when adults get stymied.   Worse is when grown men who ought to know better and claim they do get it wrong.  For example, this little bit from Christian turned atheist Dan Barker says:

The mind of a god would be at least as complex and orderly as the rest of nature and would be subject to the same question: Who made god? If a god can be thought eternal, then so … continue reading...

Response to Curtis Clark on Naturalism- A Breath of Fresh Air

Recently an atheist stumbled upon my site and in the course of corresponding with him I have discovered that our different points of view aside, he is a gentleman that I can have a conversation with.  His site is called The Academy of Metaphysical Naturalism and he recently put up a post responding to a post on my own blog on the distinction between ‘natural’ revelation and ‘special’ revelation.   Normally I try to direct correspondents to my discussion forum but in this case, an atheist who has actually announced that I am a rational thinker, I must make an … continue reading...

Why Christians Don’t Believe in Pixies, Fairies, Ancient Legends

It is not uncommon to hear skeptics dismissing Christian arguments on the assumption that Christians in fact operate on the same principles as skeptics, only they don’t apply that skepticism to their own beliefs.  So, a skeptic might say that he disbelieves in God for the same reasons why Christians don’t believe in pixies, fairies, Zeus, Thor, etc.  This is famously expressed in the statement, “We’re all atheists, I just believe in one less god than you do.”  Here is an essay by Dan Barker making the argument.  This reasoning surfaces on my forums pretty frequently, too.

It is, … continue reading...

Equivocation on the word natural by atheists and philosophical naturalists

Has anyone else noticed this?

As a case in point- in part because atheists have accused me of ‘inventing’ atheistic positions- consider this entry on my blog and the comments that follow.  But to be clear, I run across this phenomena all the time as I read and debate theism or ‘intelligent design.’

Let me illustrate what I mean by the real world quest for the origins for life.  Scientists are working like mad to recreate life from scratch.  It is requiring all their technology, all of their accumulated knowledge, and all of their expertise.  There have been some ‘successes’ … continue reading...

Global Warming and Evolution: Intimidation the New Step in the Scientific Method

I must at the outset admit that I haven’t delved into the data that I am told substantiates the view that the earth is steadily warming. That is one reason why I have not said anything about Global Warming. I shall say that here in Wisconsin we just came off of a mighty cold spell with snows as late as April, and last year was about the same. As Wisconsin is part of the globe, I feel I can anecdotally chime in that to this point I am skeptical about the Global Warming argument. Moreover, there clearly are several different … continue reading...

Understanding the Root Controversy of Intelligent Design

I have not yet seen Stein’s movie, Expelled, but hope to by the end of this weekend.  I’ve used this week as an opportunity to highlight various issues and I have linked to corroboration of at least some of the allegations that are made in the movie.  I would like to spend a moment addressing what I believe is the real crux of the matter.  This post is mainly for Christians but I can’t stop skeptics from reading.

The central argument in Intelligent Design, in the eyes of certain scientists and budding atheists, is whether or not ID should be … continue reading...

Power to the Experts! Down with Intelligent Design! To arms, to arms!

So one of the biggest public events in the Intelligent Design debate is upon us.  Ben Stein’s Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed is going to be out in theaters today.  Browsing through anti-ID commentary you get a sense of the heat this movie is taking.  It is a small taste of the heat this movie is about.  The stated concerns range all over the place, but the underlying premise that seems to have them pulling out their hair is that such popularizations of the debate are bad, very bad, because the American public are, well, morons.  Why can’t people just be … continue reading...

Bill Maher a Bigot? UFO’s more likely than the Christian Story? Is the Catholic League Right to be Offended?

So I just saw on Fox News Donohue of the Catholic League talking about the subject of their news release.  He was pretty hot about it.  The offending statement- as taken from the news release- is this:

“But I think it is much more likely that there could be space ships from outer space, than what a lot of things people believe. People still believe, you know, excuse me I know I may inject religion into every show but UFO’s are a lot more likely than a space god flew down bodily and you know who was the Son

continue reading...

Christian Response and Reaction to Pullman and His Dark Materials: the Golden Compass, the Subtle Knife, The Amber Spyglass

DownloadfileiconThe full response is pasted below, but you may want to download and print it off, or attach it in an email. If so, here it is for download:

If you would like to discuss this issue, please use my discussion forum, where this thread has been set up for that purpose.

Since this has been made available, my response has been featured on the ChristianPost.com.

Some people prefer a shorter treatment. I have produced a one page “parent’s guide”/bulletin insert. Donate ButtonMore information is available here and you can just download it, too, here:

If you appreciate the amount … continue reading...