Published: Mon, 13 Mar 2017 11:56:12 +0000
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZGender Selection - ethical considerations for new technologies
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe difference between being an atheist and being an agnostic should be pretty clear. Learn more about the differences and similarities.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZMany ex-Catholics are technically Catholic, at least according to the Catholic Church. Permanently changing that requires getting excommunicated. But how?
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZWhen church/state separation is violated and religion is actively supported by the state, are churches actually helped or are they harmed? From your About.com Guide
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZMany think agnosticism is more 'reasonable' than atheism and thus reject the label of atheist. The idea that atheism is dogmatic is incorrect.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZIdentifying basic characteristics common to religions, which taken together make religion distinct from other belief systems.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe legality of abortion is debated more than the morality of abortion, so fundamental ethical questions aren't given the attention they deserve. Some believe that the law shouldn't legislate morality, but all good law is based upon moral values. A failure to openly discuss those values can obscure important discussions.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZDeontological morality is defined by obedience to a set of independent moral rules. The most common are systems where the rules are established by some god.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZTypes of Ethical Systems. Agnosticism & Atheism.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe nature of jihad is hotly debated in the press and even among Muslim theologians. Many apologists for liberal and moderate Muslims in the West argue that jihad has nothing to do with violence, but history says something very different.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZMany opponents of church / state separation attempt to reframe the debate from being about permissible government support of religion to permissible public exposure of religion. This may seem like it should be impossible, but it's accomplished by using 'public' instead of 'government'; since public can be used either to mean 'supported by the state' or simply 'out in open view,' the fallacious shift in meaning is relatively easy to achieve. Thus atheists are completely misrepresented.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZToday the pope is regarded generally as the supreme head of the Catholic Church and, among Catholics, as the head of the universal Christian Church. Although principally the bishop of Rome, he is much more than just 'first among equals,' he is also the living symbol of the unity of Christianity. Where does this doctrine come from and how justified is it?
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZNot all religious traditions condemn abortion, and those that do don't condemn it in every situation. Religious positions on the morality of abortion are much more varied.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZArguments can be deductive or inductive and you need to know the difference in order to properly create or evaluate an argument. Learn more.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAn argument might fail on its premises or its inferences. Because of this, it is necessary to distinguish between valid arguments and sound arguments.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAccording to Karl Marx, religion is like other social institutions in that it is dependent upon the material and economic realities in a given society. It has no independent history; instead it is the creature of productive forces. As Marx wrote, ‘The religious world is but the reflex of the real world.‘. Page 4.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZWhat are teleological ethical systems? What are some problems with judging ethical decisions based upon their consequences?
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZMany Christians seem to believe that atheism is a religion, but no one with a fair understanding of both concepts would make such a mistake. Because it's such a common claim, though, it's worth demonstrating the depth and breadth of the errors being made. Presented here are the characteristics which best define religions, distinguishing them from other types of belief systems, and how atheism utterly fails to even remotely match any of them.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZGlossary of Religion and Philosophy - axiological ethics
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZA common question which atheists hear a lot is 'why don't you believe in God?' Theists, religious or not, have trouble imagining why anyone would not believe in at least some sort of god, preferably their own. When a belief occupies such a central place in a person's life and even identity, this is understandable. The fact is, there are many reasons why atheists might not believe in any gods. Most atheists can cite multiple reasons and every atheist is different.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZBiogeography not only provides significant inferential evidence for evolution and common descent, but it also provides testable predictions. Learn more.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZEpistemology is the study of the nature of knowledge and how we acquire it. Most debates between atheists and theists are ultimately epistemological disagreements.
2017-03-13T11:56:12Zclass="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" > The terms homoiousios
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZMarx is well known for saying that religion is the opiate of the masses, but his perspective on religion is more complex and nuanced than many realize
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZGlossary of Religion and Philosophy - Rastafarians
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZOne of the most prominent features of the four canonical gospels in the New Testament is the parables attributed to Jesus. Estimates usually place the number of parables somewhere between thirty and eighty, though if the definition of 'parable' is expanded to include any simile or proverb, then just about every statement attributed to Jesus can qualify.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThere have been as many theories as theorists and all offer important insights on the nature of religion and possible reasons why religion has persisted through human history.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZIs the separation of church and state really just a myth, something the founders never actually intended?
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe fossil record has an important, unique characteristic: it is our only actual glimpse into the past where common descent is proposed to have taken place.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZVirtue ethics focuses on the development of sound moral character rather than moral rules. It's believed that having a virtuous character leads to virtuous decisions.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAtheists are frequently challenged to explain why they are so critical of religious and theistic beliefs. Why do we care what others believe? Why don't we just leave people alone to believe what they want? Why do we try to
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe Sixth Commandment says 'thou shalt not kill,' but what does that mean? The answer isn't as obvious as many assume, leading to many debates.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZLaunched in 1189, the Third Crusade was called because of the Muslim recapture of Jerusalem in 1187 and the defeat of Palestinian knights at Hattin. It was ultimately unsuccessful.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZLaunched in 1202, the Fourth Crusade was in part instigated by Venetian leaders who saw it as a means to increase their power and influence.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZWhat is religion? What are some varieties of religions? What is theism, and what are some of the varieties of that? Atheists aren't theists, but they can be religious - understanding what theism and religion are is key to understanding why that is true.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe Philosophy of Mind is a more recent field that deals with questions of consciousness and how it interacts with the body and the outside world. The Philosophy of Mind asks not only what mental phenomena are and what gives rise to them, but also what relationship they have to the larger physical body and the world around us.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAh Puch was the Mayan god of death, disaster, and destruction. He ruled Mitnal, the lowest level of the Mayan underworld. Learn about this god.
2017-03-13T11:56:12Z'Microevolution' and 'macroevolution' are often used by creationists who don't understand what they are. There is no real difference between them.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAnalytic and synthetic are distinctions between types of statements which was first described by Immanuel Kant as part of his effort to find some sound basis for human knowledge.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZIs such a distinction valid? It is important to keep in mind that it presumes to describe two fundamentally different types of things.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe text of the Gospel According to Mark does not identify anyone as the author. Not even 'Mark' is listed as the author. Learn more.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThere is an increasingly popular attitude that religion and theism deserve automatic respect and deference from everyone - even those who don't share that religion or that theism. People attack atheists for failing to show the 'appropriate' respect to religious and theistic beliefs. Atheists shouldn't say things which constitute pointed, direct, or harsh challenges to religious and theistic claims. At the risk of further accusations of being intolerant and disrespectful, this is nonsense.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAre religion and theism effectively the same thing, such that every religion is theistic and every theist is also religious? Because of some common misconceptions, many people are inclined answer that question positively. It isn't uncommon even among atheists to simply assume that religion and theism are equivalent.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe humanism of the Renaissance isn't just important to the development of modern secular humanism, but of modernity and the modern world as a whole.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZScholars conclude that Mark was written during the war between Rome and the Jews (66-74). Most early dates for Mark fall around 65 CE and most late dates fall around 75 CE.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAbortion is the focus of some of the most intense social, cultural, political, religious, and ethical debates in modern American society.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZDefining what religion is and what is not isn't easy and has long been debated, but it is possible to construct a useful, strong definition of religion.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZWhat is monotheism? Learn about the belief in the existence of a single god and how it differs from polytheism and atheism.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZIdealism is a category of philosophical systems which argue that reality is somehow dependent upon the mind rather than independent of the mind.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZLaunched in response to the capture of Edessa by Muslims in 1144, the Second Crusade was accepted by European leaders due to St. Bernard of Clairvaux who was determined to reassert Christian domination in the Holy Land.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZJohn, the son of Zebedee, was called along with this brother James to be one of Jesus' twelve apostles who would accompany him on his ministry. John appears in the lists of apostles in the synoptic gospels as well as Acts.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe basic problem with substantive definitions of religion is that when they are general enough to perhaps apply to all religions, they are too vague to be very useful and end up being applicable to belief systems or beliefs which just shouldnt be labeled religions. Once they are no longer too vague, however, they describe as 'essential' to religion something which not all religions actually have and which is not alone in structuring religious beliefs.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZQuestions about the constitutionality of graduation and commencement prayers are difficult to answer because the case law varies across the nation.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZJesus explains the power and importance of faith - it is faith in God that gave him the power to curse the fig tree and make it wither overnight and similar faith on the disciples' part will give them the power to work other wonders. They may even be able to move mountains, though that is arguably a bit of hyperbole on his part.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZShould 'god be capitalized or not? Many atheists use a lowercase 'g' while Jews, Christians, and Muslims, always capitalize the G. Who is right?
2017-03-13T11:56:12Z'Existence precedes essence' has come to be a classic, even defining, formulation of the heart of existentialist philosophy.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZReligion in the former Yugoslavia: General Religious Issues.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZIf government officials do not have the authority to write prayers for public school students or even to encourage and endorse prayers, can they allow the students themselves vote on whether or not to have one of their own recite prayers during school? Some Christians tried this method of getting official prayers into public schools and the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that it's constitutional for students to vote on having prayers during graduation ceremonies.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe most common and popular arguments against gay marriage, mostly religious in nature, are easy to refute because they're based on serious errors.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZMetaphysics is looked down upon by some atheists, but as the study of the nature of reality it is probably the best subject for atheists to focus upon
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZGlossary of Religion and Philosophy - false cause
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZSo, do you want to be an atheist? Now you can learn the simple and easy way to become an atheist. If you follow these steps, you'll be an atheist in no time at all!
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZIslam and Conflict - Why are Muslim nations involved in so much conflict with their neighbors? Is this just a coincidence, or does the cause lie with their political history and religious doctrines?
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe commandment to not commit adultery sounds easy, but it's not. What is adultery, exactly? The Hebrews defined it differently than people today do.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZGenesis is where it all starts in the Bible, literally and figuratively. It's the story of creation and the origin of all the Bible's major themes. Genesis is the first book of the Bible, the first book of the Pentateuch, and the first book of the Torah. The name Genesis comes from an ancient Greek work meaning birth or origin; this comes from ancient Hebrew Bereshit, or 'In the beginning' which is how the Book of Genesis starts.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAgnostic theism is explored, as well as its relation to agnosticism, and how these two views differ in terms of spiritual belief and doubt in god(s).
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAbortion debates in America tend to focus on religious perspectives and what religious believers think. Godless views on whether abortion is moral and whether a woman's right to choose abortion should remain legally protected are almost never consulted. This is somewhat understandable, given the fact that there is no single atheist position on abortion and no authority to determine what atheists are supposed to think. This doesn't mean, however, that atheists have nothing to offer.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAlbert Einstein's denial of the existence of life after death suggests that he didn't believe in any gods and is part of his rejection of traditional religion.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe Coherence Theory of Truth, developed by Hegel and Spinoza, often seems to be an accurate description of how our conception of truth actually works. The Coherence Theory of Truth says: a belief is true when we are able to incorporate it in an orderly and logical manner into a larger and complex system of beliefs.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZMictlantecuhtli was the Aztec god of death and the underworld. To honor Mictlantecuhtli, Aztec sacrificed an impersonator of Mictlantecuhtli at night and at a temple named Tlalxicco, which means 'navel of the world.' When Hernan Cortes landed, Aztec ruler Moctezuma II thought that it was the arrival of Quetzalcoatl, signalling the end of the world, so he stepped up human sacrifices to offer the skins of victims to Mictlantecuhtli in order to placate him.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZBecause the distinction between macroevolution and microevolution is fairly minor, you won't find the terms defined and separated in every science book. You don't have to look too hard and too far to find the definitions, though, and it's important to note that macroevolution and microevolution are defined consistently across many types of scientific resources: Collected here are definitions from three types of books: biology texts, popular books on evolution, and scientific reference works.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZOne issue which faces all systems of religious authority is how to structure their relationship with the rest of civil society. Even when the form of government is theocratic and therefore controlled by religious interests, there remain aspects of society which are ostensibly distinct from traditional spheres of direct religious control, and thus some form of working relationship is required.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThere are many forms of theism, from believing in one god to believing in many gods. They aren't all the same, and can't be critiqued in the same way.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAn important component of existentialist philosophy is the portrayal of existence as being fundamentally irrational in nature. Whereas most philosophers have attempted to create philosophical systems that produce a rational account of reality, existentialist philosophers have focused upon the subjective, irrational character of human existence.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThere are a lot of resources here about agnosticism for beginners: what agnosticism is, what it isn't, and refutations of many popular myths about agnosticism. I've discovered, though, that it isn't always easy to direct people to all of the information they need. That's why I've collected here some of the basics about atheism for beginners that I find myself linking to most often.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZTheories in epistemology attempt to describe the relationship between our knowledge and the objects of that knowledge.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZElijah was an important Israelite prophet whose name in Hebrew means 'my Lord is Jehovah.' Accounts of Elijah’s life and actions are recorded through 1 and 2 Kings. Aside from coming from the village of Tosabe in Gilead (about which nothing is known), nothing is recorded about his background before he appears suddenly to promote traditional, orthodox Jewish beliefs.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZSkepticism and Critical Thinking: What is Cold Reading? How do cold readers operate? Astrologers, mediums, psychics and others appear to have an amazing ability to tell people about themselves - how do they do it? Cold Reading is a technique which is commonly used.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZWhat is the definition of a hypothetical proposition? A hypothetical proposition is a conditional statement which takes the form: if P then Q.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZIf you want to better evaluate the claims, ideas, and arguments you encounter, you need a better understanding of basic logic and critical thinking.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZMost histories of the Crusades tend to focus on the Crusaders themselves and the perspectives of European Christians seeking conquest and plunder in the Holy Land. But what about the Muslims whose lands were invaded and cities sacked? What did they think about these religious armies marching out of Europe? Page 2.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZI see a lot of misunderstandings and errors about atheism and atheists all over the net. People don't understand what atheism is, what the definition of atheism is, or the difference between atheism and agnosticism. People claim that atheism is a religion, that it requires faith, that it's a form of denial, that there are no real atheists, and that there are no atheists in foxholes. This introduction to atheism answers most of the most common questions and mistakes about atheism.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZA timeline of the First Crusade, 1095 - 1100 : Christianity vs. Islam. Launched by Pope Urban II at the Council of Clermont in 1095, the First Crusade was the most successful.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAstrology History: a review of the long history of astrology, going back to the Babylonian Empire, through Ptolemy and down to today.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZTheism is a lot simpler than most realize: it's just the belief in the existence of at least one god of some sort. It's not a religion or a belief system.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAtheists are often asked 'why don't you believe in God?' Here are some of the most common reasons why atheists don't believe in any gods.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZShould displays of the Ten Commandments be allowed in public buildings? Should large monuments be erected on the grounds of courthouses or legislative buildings? Should there be posters of the Ten Commandments in schools and other municipal buildings? Some argue that they are part of our legal history, but others contend that they are inherently religious and, therefore, cannot be allowed.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAfter cursing the fig tree, Jesus reenters Jerusalem where he cleanses the Temple of moneychangers. Why? What did he accomplish?
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZPeople can be adherents of some religions without bothering to believe in any gods, thus allowing for a person to be a religious atheist.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZThe Canaanites play an important role in the story of the Israelites' conquest of their 'Promised Land,' especially in the Book of Joshua, but the ancient Jewish scriptures contain almost no substantive information about them. The Canaanites are the villains of the story because they are living on land promised to the Israelites by Yahweh.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZBeing objective is being free of personal bias; being subjective is being influence by personal bias. Is one better than the other, though?
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZTheists offer all sorts of reasons for why they believe in a god but the only respectable reason is one which, if proven false, would at the very least cause them to seriously reconsider their belief and perhaps drop it entirely.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZYou can't debate the nature of morality or even specific moral issues unless you understand what sorts of disagreements can exist and how to address them.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZIts not uncommon to find political arguments that commit the Begging the Question fallacy. This may be because so many people are simply unfamiliar with basic logical fallacies, but an even more common reason may be that a persons commitment to the truth of their political ideology may prevent them from seeing that they are assuming the truth of what they are attempting to prove. Page 3.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZEven people who don't know much at all about logical fallacies are probably familiar with the ad hominem fallacy. This fallacy occurs whenever someone tries to rebut an argument by focusing on the person making the argument rather than on the qualities of the argument itself.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZA selection of quotes on ethics, morality, humanity and universal causation from Albert Einstein: Humans, not Gods, define morality.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZSupreme Court Decisions on Privacy & Abortion: summary and analysis of Roe v. Wade. Should women have the right to make their own decisions about pregnancy and birth, or should the government be able to outlaw abortion and tell women that they are required to carry a pregnancy to term?
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZAn American philosophy developed during the early and mid twentieth century. Pragmatists identified the nature of truth with the principle of action.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZJames was present at the resurrection of Jarius’ daughter, at Jesus’ transfiguration, and at the Garden of Gethsemane before Jesus was arrested. Learn more.
2017-03-13T11:56:12ZJustice (fairness) originates among those who are approximately equally powerful... where there is no clearly recognizable predominance and a fight would mean inconclusive mutual damage, there the idea originates that one might come to an understanding and negotiate one's claims: the initial character of justice is the character of a trade.