The Houston Chronicle (7/31) has an interesting report by writer Joe Holley on Texas Governor Rick Perry’s upcoming “Day of Prayer and Fasting,” officially called “The Response,” scheduled for August 6. Now I’m a bit skeptical about the “fasting” part of this. Take a look at any crowd of Texans, and you can tell that … Theocratic Doin’s A-Transpirin’
I’m visiting Turkey right now, and two days of my stay will overlap with Ramadan, starting tomorrow. It’s a country where it’s very hard to get away from religion in the best of times. (Plus everyone always assumes everyone else is Muslim.) Now, on the eve of Ramadan, it’s all Islam all the time. I’ve … Ramadan
I need to confess that I have a somewhat loose connection to Anders Behring Breivik, who recently killed 76 people in Norway. You see, he lifted words for his manifesto from the manifesto of “Unabomber” Ted Kaczynski. I never met Ted, but he and I were in the same research field of geometric function theory, … A conservative Christian engaged in a Christian war
I’ve been asking around, and many of my religiously liberal and secular Turkish friends are convinced that Turkish society has become more conservative. Possibly. The common examples they give show that a more orthodox religiosity has become more of a default assumption in public. One obvious sign is not just that many more women are … Creeping conservatism?
I highly recommend David Sehat’s The Myth of American Religious Freedom (Oxford UP, 2011). It has long been evident that the secular liberal story told about the history of the First Amendment and how the US has historically granted individuals free religious expression is dubious. Not to put too fine a point on it, it’s … The Myth of American Religious Freedom
I was reading a collection of essays by religious intellectuals and theologians, and a couple of them described the recent trend toward allowing gay marriage as the state interfering with the freedom of religion. On the face of it, this seems absurd. After all, if the state recognizes a certain status for gay couples, including … Gay marriage violates freedom of religion?
As an atheist, I just about always vote for political candidates who say they believe in God. Not because I’m impressed by their professed god beliefs, but because I have no other choice—unless I cast a write-in vote. Of course, in reality atheist politicians have received hundreds of thousands of votes, though their constituents likely … Imagine atheist politicians
Well, things happen fast in our hyper-connected world and there is already a review of my chapter “Hell: Christianity’s Most Damnable Doctrine” in John Loftus’ new anthology, The End of Christianity. Someone called “jayman 777” (I’ll call him “Jayman”) reviews it at this site: https://biblicalscholarship.wordpress.com/2011/07/18/review-of-chapter-10-of-the-end-of-christianity/ In my essay I argue that the traditional doctrine of … First Response to my Hell Article
Richard Swinburne adopted the Fine Tuning Argument as the heart of his ‘Teleological Argument from Spatial Order’ (The Existence of God, 2nd ed., p.167-190). The key premise of this argument mentions tuning: “…the universe…[is] tuned–that is, such as to allow and indeed make significantly probable the existence of human bodies.” (EOG, p.188)Here is another statement … Fine-Tuning Argument: Having and Eating the Cake
Here in my home state of South Carolina, a common expression when things look particularly gloomy is, “Thank God for Mississippi.” Even atheists have been known to utter this cliché. But after hearing about the August 6 public prayer event designed by Texas Governor Rick Perry, some of us in South Carolina are now saying, … Creeping theocracy