I like this cartoon, from the creationist organization Answers in Genesis. It expresses a conservative religious concern about the source and authority of morality very well. If there is no external, transcendent, supernatural, absolute, objective, (insert any other hardening adjectives you like) source of rules, then people are just making the rules up. And if … A question of authority
In the spirit of fair play and all that, I should make a list of what I like about the enterprise of theology. It’s less harmful than economics, If I think of anything else I’ll add it to the list. Right now I’m drawing a blank.
A Christian philosopher, James S. Spiegel, has a new book out, The Making of an Atheist: How Immorality Leads to Unbelief. It’s getting some press in Christian circles. I don’t imagine it’ll get much attention elsewhere; its thesis seems transparently ridiculous. Atheism, apparently, is a manifestation of moral rebellion, the psychology of having a weak … Those immoral atheists
Whether a theist says “God created all living things” or “God created the universe” or “God raised Jesus from the dead” the point is to give a personal explanation for some facts (or alleged facts) as opposed to a physical or scientific explanation. When giving a personal explanation for some fact, information about motivations or … The Purposes of God
Time to wrap up. Russell Blackford has his third response to me up. Looking at that, and going back to look at how all this started, I have to make some concessions. I overcooked my interpretation of the Bouma-Blackford dispute, pressing it into use for my own agenda. I didn’t, and still don’t, know exactly … Son of even more on multicultural dystopias
Some things that are, again, too long for the comments. Slavery Some commenters think they have a knockdown argument by bringing up possible atrocities under a multicultural order. Slavery seems to be a popular example. I think this is a very weak response. Let me explain why. In the US, opponents of gay marriage and … Even more on multicultural dystopias
I was putting in a comment in reply to YamaZaru, but it ended up exceeding the character limit. So I’ll have to post this as a separate entry. “You don’t want liberal ways “forced” upon anyone, but instead are consigning many of the members of these subgroups to having ways they didn’t choose “forced” upon … More on multicultural dystopias
Russell Blackford, in the second part of his response to me, brings up the Ottoman millet system as an example of a political arrangement based on accommodating different ethno-religious communities—an example of what not to do. As it happens, I was born and raised in the old Ottoman capital. I might be able to say … A revived millet system?
Russell Blackford has responded to my suggestion that multicultural recognition of ethno-religious groups might have a better claim to protect social peace in some circumstances. It’s a thoughtful reply, and it convinces me that I should better qualify some of my claims. Overall, however, I still disagree. I especially think that speaking of theocracy and … “Theocracy” is not the issue
Russell Blackford, editor of 50 Voices of Disbelief (which I have contributed to), is a strong defender of secular liberalism. In his blog, which I like to follow, he regularly responds to critics of secularism and nonbelief. In his latest, he rips into sociologist and priest Gary Bouma, who has recently attacked secularists and active … Postmodern peace-keeping