Discover a new way to find and share stories you'll love… Learn about Reading Desk

All Blogs / Academics / Philosophy / Popular

Do believers and nonbelievers have a common goal when they discuss religious questions?

I think that is critical to the pursuit of discussion. We want people to agree with us, but should this be our only goal? Is there, or should there be, a legitimate goal of trying to understand our differences, and trying to find our...Show More Summary

Sexist passages

There are always two ways of looking at statements from the past where women are concerned. One of them is in comparison to our society. The other is from the standpoint of the society at the time. If you transport these statements into our time, the sound awfully sexist. Show More Summary

Why Are So Many on the Left Moral Scum?

Dennis Prager here details recent vicious attacks upon himself and his wife, and then offers an explanation of liberal-left scumbaggery: First, truth is a not a left-wing value (though, of course, some individuals on the left have great integrity). If...

Obama the Disaster

My man Hanson: The only mystery about the last six years is how much lasting damage has been done to the American experiment, at home and abroad. Our federal agencies are now an alphabet soup of incompetence and corruption. How...

E.J. Lowe on the Inescapability of Metaphysics

"How is it possible for creatures like us to chart the realm of possibilities? Of course, this is a curious question, to the extent that it is, itself, a question -- addressed to ourselves -- about the very realm of possibilities, access to which, by us, is being put in question. Show More Summary

What is deism?

Apparently, historically, it is not the view that God wound things up and left it alone. There is far more Christian content in the deism of people like Jefferson than most people recognize. It, for example, doesn't deny future rewards and punishments.Here.

Substance, Accidents, Incarnation

This entry is a further installment in a continuing discussion with Tim Pawl, et al., about the Chalcedonian Christological two-natures-one-person doctrine. Professor Pawl put to me the following question: You ask: “Now if an accident is not the sort of...

Evolution and the Virtue of Self-Love (2): Smith and Darwin

Like James Otteson (in Adam Smith's Marketplace of Life), Hanley thinks that Adam Smith's moral theory requires a theological teleology in which human beings are seen as created in God's image as part of divinely designed universe serving the benevolent ends of the Creator. Show More Summary

James Randi: I always have an out

Discussed here. But Randi says that it just means that he doesn't let the subjects cheat.

Evolution and The Virtue of Self-Love: Mandeville and Smith

One of the common assumptions of the modern social sciences, biology, and moral philosophy is the distinction between self-love and altruism and the claim that true morality must be altruistic in its selflessness and thus free from any motivation by self-love. Show More Summary

Meditation is Hard

Thoughts don't like to subside. One leads to another, and another. You would experience the thinker behind the thoughts, but instead you have thoughts about this thinker while knowing full well that the thinker is not just another thought. Or...

Doubting and Believing

Doubting no more confers dubitability upon that which is doubted than believing bestows credibility upon that which is believed.

Personhood Week

Personhood Week, at National Geographic is a nice set of short pieces briefly touring the issues around the crucial but controversial issue of what constitutes a person. You won’t be too surprised to hear that in my view personhood is really all about consciousness. The core concept for me is that a person is a […]

A Third Wave?

An article in the Chronicle of Higher Education (via the always-excellent Mind Hacks) argues cogently that as a new torrent of data about the brain looms, we need to ensure that it is balanced by a corresponding development in theory. That must surely be right: but I wonder whether the torrent of new information is […]

The Unlimited Obfuscation of Some Continental Writers

I hesitate to call them philosophers. David Gordon serves up for our delectation and instruction the following tidbit of Continental balderdash (I quote the whole of Gordon's entry and then add a comment of my own): The philosophy of Roy...


Loftus: There is nothing irrational about these videos or laughing at your faith if you are delusional, Vic. Reason is behind them. Laughter is good medicine. You need a dosage of it everyday. Let's say believers are in fact as I say, delusional. Show More Summary

Friday Cat Blogging! The Patron Saint of Cats

You didn't know that cats have a patron saint, did you? Here she is: And here is her story.

Keeping an Eye on the Political

Did the Jews of Europe keep a sharp eye on the political from, say, 1923 to 1933 when Hitler acceded to power? Not very well, as the sequel showed. Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.

Copyright © 2011 Regator, LLC