Jerusalem, Athens, and Kant

October 26, 2006

Bill Vallicella has once again started an interesting discussion over here.  For those like me who find ancient and medieval philosophy much more interesting than the modern and contemporary, read David Tye’s comment.


A Blog of Dialogue?

October 21, 2006

OK, I just found this blog, which may have some real potential. It appears to be run by two guys: one atheist and one theist. If you’re interested in observing how and what an atheist thinks of theism, check it out. BUT PLEASE (!!!!!), I BEG OF YOU (!!!!!): IF YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOUR TALKING ABOUT,or IF YOUR INTEREST IS MERELY TO ARROGANTLY SPOUT OFF YOUR BELIEF WITH NO ARGUMENT, PLEASE STAY AWAY FROM THE ATHEISTS! You will do more harm than good. Gosh, I know that sounds bad, but I could not be more sincere. I’ve seen it on too many blogs: Christians (even some who mean well) show up and “engage” the atheist. But it doesn’t take long to see that the Christian is way out of his/her league in such debates as the existence of God. If you think there’s even a chance that you aren’t very familiar with the arguments being discussed (e.g., ontological, teleological, moral, etc), please content yourself to read and learn, for now (which is how we all start).

At any rate, the blog appears to worth a visit. Enjoy!

Playing the Links

October 21, 2006
    Eberle, Collins, & Cowan: the moral argument:

At his blog,

Steve Cowan has discussed Robert Eberle’s (a skeptic) review of Francis Collins’s book The Language of God, highlighting the former’s critique of the moral argument. It’s worth a read.

    Dawkins and Freedom

At his blog, Bill Dembski has a snippet of Richard Dawkins’s treatment of human freedom; there is some discussion, as well. See here.

    Van Inwagen & Free-Will

Peter van Inwagen is obviously a premier metaphysician; when he speaks on the problem of free-will, people listen. If you’re one of those who listens, you may enjoy this post.

Intelligent Design Debate…

October 16, 2006

On October 12th, at the CATO Institute, Michael Shermer, author of Why Darwin Matters, presented his case against intelligent design in a debate with Jonathan Wells, Senior Fellow, Center for Science and Culture, Discovery Institute.  I just finished watching this debate and was pleased with the intellectual congeniality and engagement.  BUT, I have a few things I want to vent about:

1)  It blows my mind that (in this case) Shermer is going on and on about how we don’t need to stop when the science gets tough and posit the God of the Gaps.   So, he is saying that we need to “roll up our sleeves and keep doing science.”  BUT, he is not starting from a scientific premise.  THIS IS IMPORTANT.  He assumes materialistic natural philosophy.  This is where his science begins.  BUT, this is not a scientific theory.  This is a philosophical theory.  How is this any different from positing a “god of the gaps”?  Further, most serious ID scholars are not wanting to posit  a “god of the gaps.”  They are simply wanting to pose a problem with Darwinism and follow the evidence where it leads.  They want to be able to practice this without being called “pseudo-scientists” or “masked creationists.”  Most of the time their position is reviewed in popular media it is straw-manned as such (though, we have been guilty of the same),

2)  Something I heard William Dembske say at a conference I attended a year or so ago really stuck with me.  WHAT ARE THE IMPLICATIONS FOR THE FACT THAT ALL EXPERIMENTS NECESSARILY INVOLVE PERSONAL AGENCY?  The scientist might be able to recreate, in a controlled environment,  microevolution.  However, they cannot recreate macroevolution.  Most importantly though, experiments cannot occur without personal agency.  So, to create the sorts of things they are wanting to argue for, they must “design” the parameters.  They must “fix the books so to speak.”  No experiments occur, or come about, or coalesce “randomly” or by “unguided processes.”  This is a problem.

3) Jonathan Wells pointed out that polls show consistently that about 80-85% of the nation do not believe in a Darwinism that posits that things came about by “unguided processes” or “random mutation.”  However, ALL tax payers currently pay for this science to monopolize public education.  Further, as Jonathan Wells rightly insisted, the “universities are not the bastions of competing ideas” that we think they are.  Rather, they are just as politicized and monopolized, even to the point that any prof that engages in I.D. is ostracized, often times being forced to leave or fired.  One example of this is Guillermo Gonzales.  There is a professor at the institution where he works that is on a crusade to get him fired.  Does this sound like intellectual freedom?

I could keep going…but I must study now.

Watch the debate here.

What are your thoughts?

Greg Boyd interview w/ Charlie Rose…

October 13, 2006

Controversial evangelical paster, Greg Boyd, has written a book entitled “Myth of a Christian Nation.”  This book has caused some controversy, even within his own church where he lost 1,000 members as a result.   The New York Times published a front-page article about Greg’s recent book Myth of a Christian Nation, the sermon series “The Cross and the Sword” and Woodland Hills Church. This story was syndicated around the country to newspapers and web sites, including AOL.  As a result, his book sales have increased significantly.  A subsequent interview details much of his views on the kingdom of God in relation to politics, abortion (and particulary, how to go about engaging the problem from a kingdom pariticipant point of view), civic engagement, etc..  Check out this interview.  It is definitely very thought-provoking.  What do you think of his conclusions?  I really want to get some good feedback on this from some of you out there.  I am trying to solidify some of these issues myself.  Your thoughts would be very helpful!

(Charlie Rose interviews Rick Warren during the first half of the interview…if you want to watch it, good.  Otherwise, fastforward the interview to about half way through to see Boyd.)

Will there be sex in heaven?

October 6, 2006

For those of us who are honest enough to admit that we have wondered if there will be sex in heaven, well now we don’t have to wonder anymore.  Well, maybe I am being too generous.  However, Peter Kreeft, professor of Philosophy at Boston College, has written an academic article dealing with a usually non-academic issue…SEX.  I find his article intriguing and well thought out.  To download this article go here.


October 6, 2006

As a scholar, I use my laptop a pretty good bit. I think achieved nerd level about six months ago. I’ve used a MAC for years now, until I saw this. Maybe you PC users have finally found a champion.