Posts Tagged by philosophy

Arguing about the morality of a thing with an atheist is pointless

In my view, it is pointless to debate the morality of anything with an atheist until he is willing to admit that moral assessments imply the existence of the immaterial and transcendental realities that must exist if those assessments reflect anything more than one’s favorite flavor of ice cream.

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Short Stories on Kindle – health care, cloning, world domination

A short collection of some of my favorite short stories is now available on Kindle.

The stories are ‘Polite Company,’ a lovely story of rationing gone bad, ‘Adam and Eve and the Tree of Knowledge of Knowledge’, and ‘Bring on the Brave World’, another lovely story, this one of world domination.

Enjoy.

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The Explanatory Fallacy

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 drop the principle, recognizing it can’t be maintained as tightly as was presented. A moment later, or in another conversation, the principle is re-presented.

The principle is this: that a proposition is true if it explains something. Or, a belief is to be preferred if it explains something. Or, the better belief is the one that explains the most.

At first blush, this principle seems pretty solid. After all, don’t we give weight to an idea, hypothesis, or theory if it provides an explanation for something else? If I come across the body of a clearly murdered person and the evidence points to another person who is known to have hated the victim, wouldn’t we say, “Well, that explains that. He hated him.” ? Well, yes. It does explain it, but it still doesn’t follow that he actually murdered anyone. The time honored tradition for hanging a murder verdict on someone does include motive- but also means and opportunity. Merely having a hypothesis that ‘explains’ the facts does not prove the hypothesis. One must corroborate it. If it cannot be corroborated, it doesn’t follow it isn’t true. We just have to be careful how we weight it. We certainly would not (or ought not) sentence a man to death for it.

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Literary Magazine with Apologetics Emphasis November Edition

I am very pleased to announce that our first edition of Athanatos Christian Ministry’s newest endeavor, Literary Apologetics.Mag, has been released as of yesterday, Nov. 1st, 2010.

The website is: http://literaryapologetics.com/

The basic purpose of the magazine is to deliberately and intentionally cultivate a perspective within the Church that acknowledges the important role of the arts in our culture in shaping viewpoints and- and this is important- seeks to participate and emphasize the arts (rather than withdrawing from them, or condemning them).

You can read the current edition online by going to the link above or you can download the magazine in several editions, including a digital book version (epub) and in a print ready pdf, by going here.

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The Living and the Dead and Rational Thought

One of the things I’ve come to realize is the truth of this statement: As the dead do not know the living, or even that they themselves are dead, so too irrationality does not know rationality. Augustine argued that evil was not a ‘thing-in-itself’ but always some good thing that has been corrupted.  Evil is […]

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Economy and Ideology and Taxes and Freedom

In short, a tax of any amount impacts choice to some degree, and free choice is the foundation for freedom. Hence, it is impossible to issue a tax without affecting, at least to a degree, the freedom of the people taxed. To return to the cigarette tax, if the cost of the cigarettes are so high that people won’t buy them then that is indistinguishable from a law forbidding their sale. The net effect of both is a decrease in freedom. Even if many can still pay the tax, and choose to do so, there will be some for whom the cost is high enough that the net effect is the same as actually outlawing it outright.

It appears to be freedom, but it isn’t. No law prohibiting smoking was passed, no one was thrown in jail, but for some portion of the population the effect is just as though there were.

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Apologetics Videos File Sharing Service

I am hereby issuing an open invitation to Christian apologists to upload their video content to my new site: http://www.apologeticsvideos.net

One of my chief goals in starting this site was to meet some of my own video sharing needs- namely, Youtube’s 10 minute video limit was killing me. 🙂

Henceforth, I will post all of my videos to Apologeticsvideos.net and if they are lucky enough to be under 10 minutes long, I will also upload them to Youtube.com.

Some questions you may be having:

Q. Can Christians other than Christian apologists post videos?

A. Sure.

Q. Can atheists and nonChristians post videos?

A. Um. At this point I am going to tentatively say yes, but I reserve the right to change my mind.

Q. Can content be uploaded that has nothing to do with religion, philosophy, Christianity, etc, like for example using Mentos to blow up innocent pop bottles?

A. No. At least make some effort, even if scant and in passing, to make sure the content ‘fits’ the site.

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