2016-12-04T11:02:29ZIt is possible to say that, scientifically, God does not exist - just as science is able to discount the existence of a myriad of other alleged beings.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZAmericans' obsession with the American flag isn't just an example of patriotism or nationalism - it's an example of fetishism. Some Americans, at least, have developed a cult around their flag in which that flag is treated almost as it if had supernatural powers, and certainly as if it were more than merely a symbol of America. The flag is treated as if it were America itself - as if it were a substitute for America, such that how you treat it were how you treat America.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZPerhaps the mid-winter holiday season centered around Christmas should be a time of festivities, but in America many other things intrude as well. Atheists are faced with questions about whether they should participate and if they should reveal their atheism. Conservative Christians insist that Christmas is meaningless without their religion - and say that both are under assault from atheists. Should parents lie to encourage belief in Santa? How reliable are gospels stories about the Nativity?
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZThis claim is common, but it rests on a misunderstanding of what real freedom of religion entails. The most important thing to remember is that freedom of religion, if it is going to apply to everyone, also requires freedom from religion. Why is that? You do not truly have the freedom to practice your religious beliefs if you are also required to adhere to any of the religious beliefs or rules of other religions.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZCan there be a godless morality? Can we assert a superiority for a godless morality over traditional, theistic, and religious morality? Yes, I think that this is possible. Unfortunately, few people even acknowledge the existence of godless moral values, much less their significance. When people talk about moral values, they almost always presume that they have to be talking about religious morality and religious values. The very possibility of godless, irreligious morality is ignored.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZHumanism involves any concern with humans (including human needs, human desires, and human experiences) first and foremost. This often means giving human beings a special place in the universe on account of their abilities and faculties. Humanism is less a philosophical system, a set of doctrines, or even a specific system of beliefs, than it is an attitude or perspective on life and humanity. This perspective in turn influences various philosophies and belief systems.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZCan public schools endorse or encourage prayer if they are endorsing and encouraging 'silent meditation' as well? Some Christians thought this would be a good way to smuggle official prayers back into the school day, but courts rejected their arguments and the Supreme Court found the practice unconstitutional.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZContemporary efforts to 'protect' the American flag from 'desecration' focus on burning the flag in political protests, but the earliest such laws focused on use of the flag to sell merchandise commercially. Many states and municipalities passed laws banning 'base' uses of the American flag in commerce. The Supreme Court decided in the case of Halter v. Nebraska that such laws were constitutional; today many remain on the books, though few people seem to realize this.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZChristians are expected to act much like Peter. Also, the gospels describe Jesus as calling Peter his “rock” upon which the future church would be built.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZDebates about whether some particular right is in the Constitution or not are really debates about how to read and interpret the Constitution. Those who claim that the Constitution doesn't say 'right to privacy' or 'separation of church and state' are relying upon the assumption that unless a particular phrase or specific words actually appears in the document, then the right doesn't exist.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZConservatives insist that the Constitution guarantees freedom of religion, not freedom from religion, and argue against strict separation of church and state. Too often, though, conservatives seem to have a flawed understanding of what freedom from religion really entails and fail to realize that freedom from religion is crucial to religious liberty in general.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZUsing words to express opposition to the American government is generally accepted, but what about symbols or emblems? Does the right to free speech include a right to express views and communicate ideas via means other than literal speech? The Supreme Court was asked to decide this in the case of Stromberg v. California and they ruled that use of a flag to communicate ideas was, indeed, covered by the Constitution's protections for free speech.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZThe latter part of the year in the United States is affectionately known as the "holiday season" and
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZOriginally derived from pagan religious celebrations in Europe, the Christmas Tree was adopted by Christianity but never entirely at home in it.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZDoctrinally, the pope is regarded as the successor of St. Peter, leader of the apostles after the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. This is an important factor in the tradition that the pope is believed to have jurisdiction over the entire Christian church in matters of faith, morals and church government. Reviewed here are basic questions about how the papacy developed, whether popes are infallible, debates about who has been pope, and more.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZPeople might legitimately wonder why atheists debate religious theists over the validity of both theism and religion. Atheism is only the disbelief in gods; this means that some atheists may themselves be religious while others may not care about either theism or religion. In practice, though, atheists are interested in both theism and religion, commonly regarding both as not only false but harmful to people and society. Atheists care because religion and theism affect them as well.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZOne interesting difference occurs in how Catholics translate the Deuteronomy verses into actual commandments. In the Butler Catechism, verses eight through ten are simply left out. The Catholic version thus omits the prohibition against graven images. The Protestant versions of the commandments retain the prohibition against graven images, but it seems to be ignored since statues and other images have proliferated in their churches as well. Page 3.
2016-12-04T11:02:29Zclass="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Texas : It is
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZThe most basic direct evidence of evolution is our direct observation of evolution occurring. This is also the most basic lie which creationists tell about evolution because they constantly claim that evolution has never been observed when, in fact, it's been observed both in the lab and the field repeatedly. Creationists count on this lie getting traction because they lie about what evolution is and repeat the lies often enough that they are believed through sheer, dishonest repetition.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZMany conservative evangelical Christians at this time of year want to 'put Christ back in Christmas' and insist that 'Jesus is the Reason for the Season.' Unfortunately, they don't have much of a case.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZWithin months of the Texas v. Johnson decision that burning an American flag is constitutionally protected expression, Congress passed the Flag Protection Act, legislatively challenging the Court's ruling and prohibiting the desecration of American flags. For the second time in two years, the Supreme Court was faced with the question of whether the government could ban flag burning.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZThe most common, popular, and recognized symbol for Christmas today isn't an infant Jesus or even a manger scene, but Santa Claus. It's Santa who graces all the ads and decorations, not Jesus. Santa Claus is not, however, a religious figure or symbol.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZDoes the state have the authority to make it a crime to burn an American flag, even as part of a political protest and as a means for expressing a political opinion? Most states have banned flag burning as part of statutes generally outlawing flag desecration. The Supreme Court had to rule on such the Texas law when a man was convicted for burning an American flag at the Republican National Convention.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZMany schools have prayers at important events like graduations, but critics argue that such prayers violate the separation of church and state.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZIn order to debate well on any topic and think critically about all of the opinions we encounter, we need the proper skills. Whether reading advertising, listening to politicians, buying a used car, or considering arguments for religion, we need to know how to carefully examine what is being said and consider the validity of the content or structure.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZAtheism is commonly divided into two types: strong atheism and weak atheism. Although only two categories, this distinction manages to reflect the broad diversity which exists among atheists when it comes to their positions on the existence of gods.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZThe realm of private property and conduct facilitates the moral, personal, and intellectual development of individuals, without which democracy isn't possible.
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZTwo of the actions which Nazi Germany is most infamous for are probably the burning of books and the burning of people. Are the two connected? Curiously, the idea that the former would lead to the latter was famously predicted more than 100 years before the Nazi takeover of Germany by German author Heinrich Heine. What did he understand that others do not? What is the connection between burning books and burning people?
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZIs there a fundamental right to abortion? Is there a right to privacy that protects contraception and use of contraceptives?
2016-12-04T11:02:29ZFor Karl Marx, the basic determining factor of human history is economics. According to him, humans - even from their earliest beginnings - are not motivated by grand ideas but instead by material concerns, like the need to eat and survive. This is the basic premise of a materialist view of history. At the beginning, people worked together in unity and it wasn't so bad. Page 3.