Category Archives: philosophy

Is atheism irrational? A philosopher says “yes”

Over at The Atlantic, you can read one of the more bizarre takes on atheism I’ve seen in a while. It’s not a nasty critique of New Atheism in the John Gray style, but a very strange piece about how New Atheism, LIKE RELIGION (these articles always draw that parallel), is based on wish-thinking. “What?”, you say. […]

The ghost ouside the machine

Reader Pliny the in Between has posted this on his/her website Pictoral Theology; it’s relevant to our discussions about consciousness and God.    

A new proof of God: The argument from The Matrix

Well, there’s this website whose name (which includes “Science and Nonduality”) has some strange characters in it, so I’ll just give a screenshot that links to the site: Part of the site’s aim is to “ignite the dialogue between science and spirituality,” which already erects my fur. And on that site, someone named Bernardo Kastrup has […]

Dan Fincke responds to me, claiming morality is objective

I previously wrote about Dan Fincke’s talk at the Pittsburgh Atheist and Humanist meetings, in which he claimed that there is indeed an objective morality: one based on “human flourishing.” It was only a 20-minute talk, as were all of them, so he couldn’t lay out his thesis in detail, and I had to respond […]

Daniel Fincke: morality is objective

Several of the talks at the Pittsburgh Atheist/Humanist meetings were excellent, and I hope to have time later to discuss one or two more. But first I want to say a few things about Daniel Fincke’s talk, titled “Empowerment Ethics.”  Daniel (I don’t know if he goes by “Dan”), as you may know, is a […]

How does philosophy help science?

We go around and around on this topic, and right now I’m just looking for examples of how philosophy—not philosophy broadly construed as “people thinking”, but more or less the academic discipline of philosophy—has helped science. Now I know that philosophers can correct some bad arguments of scientists, and, if educated in science, can make critiques […]

Accommodationism from a physicist

On his Scientific American website Cross-Check, John Horgan interviews Carlo Rovelli, a physicist well known for his work on quantum gravity. They cover a number of topics, including whether there will soon be a “theory of everything” (Rovelli says no), the role of philosophy in physics, and the compatibility of science and religion.  You can […]

Gary Gutting interviews Michael Ruse and asks him why he coddles religion

Gary Gutting is a philosophy professor at the University of Notre Dame, and has been interviewing various academics about religion at his website The Stone at The New York Times. Interviewees have included Alvin “I Haz True Beliefs” Plantinga and my friend the philosopher Philip Kitcher. This week Gutting’s subject is the philosopher of science Michael Ruse, now at […]

A philosopher bashes atheists for dumb reasons

The atheist-bashing continues, and since there aren’t many new ways to attack nonbelievers, the critiques take the form of very slightly altered but still-familiar arguments. The latest is an essay in the Spectator penned bty the conservative and religion-friendly philosopher Roger Scruton, who specializes in aesthetics.  But his piece, “Humans hunger for the sacred, why can’t the new atheists […]

Pigliucci pwns Neil deGrasse Tyson; SMBC teases Pigliucci

Neil DeGrasse Tyson has criticized philosophy quite a bit recently, and so has Lawrence Krauss, though Krauss apologized for some of his more egregious statements. Tyson, however, remains obdurately anti-philosophy, and that has angered Massimo Pigliucci. Over at his new website Scientia Salon, Pigliucci takes out after Tyson in a post called “Neil DeGrasse Tyson and […]

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