Reasons for Joy; In Gentleness, and Respect.

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For anyone interested, Matt Dillahunty and David Baggett are discussing an abductive moral argument on my channel in roughly an hour:

Choose Your Own Topic / Graham Oppy vs Josh Rasmussen
« on: January 30, 2018, 11:46:56 am »
Hi all, it’s been a while since I’ve posted, but wanted to share this exchange I recently hosted between Oppy and Rasmussen. The topic was “The Origins of Reality.” Enjoy!

Choose Your Own Topic / Christianity as Wish-fulfillment
« on: October 30, 2017, 09:21:40 am »
A number of atheists think that explaining Christian belief in terms of pyschology leads to valid metaphysical or epistemological conclusions. This is not the case.

Choose Your Own Topic / Matt Walsh on Being a Bad Example
« on: October 26, 2017, 09:11:24 am »
Matt Walsh recently said this in a Tweet: "Your god is magical dust that exploded randomly and somehow created a world filled with sentient beings that have no meaning or purpose."

This kind of rhetoric is both unhelpful and unfortunate. By "god," Matt can't mean any sort of deity, instead he means "your object of worship." But this is still problematic, even from a Christian perspective. Atheists don't worship the Big Bang, they don't worship the universe.

On whether atheists believe the universe "exploded randomly," this is again a straw man. Some atheists don't even think the universe began to exist, let alone "exploded" into existence. Moreover, "Big Bang" is a misnomer. It doesn't mean that the universe "exploded" or that this event was random.

Another problem is that there are respectable Naturalistic accounts of how humans (and our particular universe) came about. One I find most palatable stems from an Everettian interpretation of quantum mechanics (many worlds hypothesis). It's a sort of modal realism that says there are an infinite number of universes where all possible universes are actualized. There's nothing absurd or irrational about this.

The overall tone of it is perhaps the least helpful. We ought to be charitably engaging the views of our interlocutors with care, intelligence, and respect. Anything else is a complete waste of time. It's shameful that we have Christians at this level of influence encouraging vitriol and empty rhetoric.

For anyone interested. I defend an RE approach. Feel free to share your thoughts.

Posted this one over the weekend for anyone interested. The audio is included at the link. I firstly argue that we have no reason to think that Naturalism predicts evil and suffering, secondly that Soul-Building makes the data at least as surprising on Theism as on Naturalism, and third I present a version of Skeptical Theism.

Feel free to share your thoughts.

Choose Your Own Topic / My Conversation with a Street Epistemologist
« on: September 28, 2017, 11:01:36 am »
I figured some people here would be interested in checking out this discussion I recently posted on my blog. I take a Reformed Epistemology approach.

Feel free to comment and leave your thoughts.

Choose Your Own Topic / Tactics
« on: September 18, 2017, 03:29:28 pm »
Who here has read Tactics?

Choose Your Own Topic / A Sobering Critique of Street Epistemology
« on: September 15, 2017, 08:12:17 am »
Here's part 3 of my series for anyone interested/following along:

Choose Your Own Topic / Opportunity for alex1212
« on: September 10, 2017, 11:09:52 am »
This is a chance for alex1212 to provide a single sound deductive argument for the conclusion that God's existence is impossible. Just one. Kindly provide the premises and defend them.

Choose Your Own Topic / Introducing Street Epistemology
« on: September 08, 2017, 09:49:46 am »
Not sure how many of you are up to date on this trend, but here's an introduction.

Choose Your Own Topic / Skeptical Theism and Moral Skepticism
« on: August 17, 2017, 12:58:59 pm »
A common rebuttal to skeptical theism is that if skeptical theism is true, we should be in doubt about whether we should intervene to prevent suffering. If we are in doubt that the goods we know of are representative of the goods there are, then we should doubt that there isn't some great good might result from letting a child drown in a pool, for instance. Normally we would just save the child. But this objection says, if skeptical theism is true, we should doubt whether we should save them. But clearly that's wrong (ie: we know we should save them). So, skeptical theism is false.

Here's a very simple response: Intervening to alleviate suffering is always the right thing to do, unless one believes there is a better reason for not intervening. To illustrate, suppose there is a person on a railroad track about to be run over. Now suppose I believe that saving them means my entire family will be killed. That belief, for me, is a better reason to not intervene. But if I lacked that belief (and it weren't replaced by a similar kind of belief), then it would be incumbent on me to act and save the victim.

Going back to the drowning example, unless we believe there's a better reason not to intervene, we should save the child from drowning. Note that lacking the belief that we've got good reason to not save the child is compatible with our believing someone else (ie: God) has good reason to not intervene. So unless we believe we have a better reason not to intervene, which I don't think any sane person would admit, we should not be in doubt about intervening to save the child.

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