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The Most Famous Debate on the Existence of God

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On January 28, 1948, the BBC brought together two of the century's brightest minds for a radio debate about the existence of God. To be sure, the debaters were not just lightweight showboats, blowing off steam. The two men represented the cream of the intellectual crop. Bertrand Russell was a renowned British philosopher, mathematician, historian, and perhaps the world's leading atheist at the time. He authored many skeptical essays and books, including the collection still popular today, Why... Read More

Why Having a Heart of Gold is Not What Christianity is About

HeartOfGold

Many atheists and agnostics today insistently argue that it is altogether possible for non-believers in God to be morally upright. They resent the implication that the denial of God will lead inevitably to complete ethical relativism or nihilism. And they are quick to point out examples of non-religious people who are models of kindness, compassion, justice, etc. In point of fact, a recent article has proposed that non-believers are actually, on average, more morally praiseworthy than... Read More

Three Bad Attitudes Theists Have Towards Atheists

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Filed under Atheism, Religion

ManScreaming-Theists

Norman Vincent Peale, who wrote The Power of Positive Thinking, once said, “The trouble with most of us is that we would rather be ruined by praise than saved by criticism.” It’s hard to honestly face criticism, but it’s the only way we can grow as human beings, since we are notoriously good at deceiving ourselves about our own competence and knowledge.1 That is why I hope theists and atheists will consider shedding attitudes we might unknowingly possess that can hinder productive... Read More

Coming to Our Senses: The Moral Sense of Scripture

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Filed under The Bible

Bible - Moral Sense

NOTE: Over the past several months, we've had lots of combox discussion about how Catholics read and interpret the Bible. To help us all make sense of this question, we began a multi-part series on the topic. Once a week, for the next several weeks, Mark Shea will unpack how Catholics authentically read the Bible. He began with a general introduction, then he outlined three specific guidelines. Last week he launched into the three main spiritual senses (or lenses) through which Catholics... Read More

Answering the Tough Questions about Objective Morality

Answers

EDITOR'S NOTE: Today continues our eight-part debate on the resolution, "Does objective morality depend on the existence of God?" We'll hear from two sharp young thinkers. Joe Heschmeyer, a Catholic seminarian in Kansas City, Kansas, will argue the affirmative view. Steven Dillon, a gifted philosopher and a former Catholic seminarian, will argue the negative. The eight parts will run as follows: Monday (11/4) - Joe's opening statement (affirmative) Tuesday (11/5) - Steven's opening statement... Read More

Tough Questions about Objective Morality

Questions

EDITOR'S NOTE: Today continues our eight-part debate on the resolution, "Does objective morality depend on the existence of God?" We'll hear from two sharp young thinkers. Joe Heschmeyer, a Catholic seminarian in Kansas City, Kansas, will argue the affirmative view. Steven Dillon, a gifted philosopher and a former Catholic seminarian, will argue the negative. The eight parts will run as follows: Monday (11/4) - Joe's opening statement (affirmative) Tuesday (11/5) - Steven's opening statement... Read More

Must Objective Morality be Grounded?

Ground

EDITOR'S NOTE: Today continues our eight-part debate on the resolution, "Does objective morality depend on the existence of God?" We'll hear from two sharp young thinkers. Joe Heschmeyer, a Catholic seminarian in Kansas City, Kansas, will argue the affirmative view. Steven Dillon, a gifted philosopher and a former Catholic seminarian, will argue the negative. The eight parts will run as follows: Monday (11/4) - Joe's opening statement (affirmative) Tuesday (11/5) - Steven's opening statement... Read More

Does Objective Morality Depend Upon God?

Nazi Troops

EDITOR'S NOTE: Today kicks off an eight-part debate on the resolution, "Does objective morality depend on the existence of God?" Over the next eight days, we'll hear from two sharp young thinkers. Joe Heschmeyer, a Catholic seminarian in Kansas City, Kansas, will argue the affirmative view. Steven Dillon, a gifted philosopher and a former Catholic seminarian, will argue the negative. The eight parts will run as follows: Monday (11/4) - Joe's opening statement (affirmative) Tuesday (11/5)... Read More

Are Animals Moral?

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Filed under Morality

Monkeys Fighting

A study conducted last year is now being used to support the claim that chimpanzees have morality just like humans do. But have commenters been monkeying with the study’s conclusions? In the study conducted at Georgia State University (which has been covered on websites such as CNN), scientists tested chimps with what they call the “ultimatum game.” The game has been played in cultures worldwide and involves three roles: the experimenter, the proposer, and the respondent. In the... Read More

Confusing the Arguments for God

Confusion

In this article I wish to offer some clarification on different categories of arguments for the existence of God. I am not weighing in on the relative value any of them here. Rather, I am just pointing out some distinctions and categories that are often confused or missed at the popular level. Also, due to non-standard nomenclature, specific argument titles are not as important as the actual arguments. Regardless of labels, it is important to keep these distinctions in mind when arguing... Read More

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