Meaning tagged posts

Spirituality for the Skeptic

What does it mean to be a spiritual person? According to some, spirituality is about identifying with certain otherworldly beliefs. Others consider it to indicate faith in a deity or in supernatural beings. Recently, in Waking Up, Sam Harris has suggested that religious traditions have too often imposed their restrictive ideas onto spirituality. A spiritual person is not necessarily a religious person, and may only be spiritual in the sense of having a particular disposition towards life, the world, and the universe.

Robert Solomon, who was Quincy Lee Centennial Professor of Business and Phil...

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Ep. 6 – What is Naturalism? with John Shook

What is naturalism? For episode six, I take up this broad topic in conversation with John Shook, a research associate in philosophy and instructor in science education for the University at Buffalo. Dr. Shook holds a Ph.D in philosophy from the University at Buffalo, served as professor of philosophy at Oklahoma State University from 2000-2006, has worked for several secular and humanist organizations – including the Center for Inquiry and the American Humanist Association – and he is the author and editor of numerous books, including The God Debates and The Future of Naturalism.

Armchair Ath...

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Value and Virtue in a Godless Universe

Often times public tragedies in the United States are followed by warnings against godlessness.1 When people have no promise of divine justice and no faith in a good god, the argument goes, it’s no surprise that lives are lost, since life on a naturalistic worldview is without value. Conservative politicians are not the only ones who have been known to make such claims...

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Why are we here?

Why Are We Here?

Why are we communicating? I am typing these words for you to read and you are reading them. But why are we doing this?

We might say we are communicating to better understand each other, to pass the time, to learn different viewpoints, and so on. While the answer may not be entirely clear to us, we will likely have a general idea of why we engage in this sort of behavior. We are social creatures, we enjoy each other, we have an interest in these subjects… whatever the case, most of us would agree that these are all quite valid explanations for why two people would communicate.

Now imagine that...

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Finding hope in a godless world

Finding Hope in a Godless World

What hope can the atheist have? This question, often intended to be rhetorical, has long been a favorite of theists and apologists seeking to emphasize the importance of a life lived by faith. Christian apologist William Lane Craig lists it as one of three reasons for why the existence of god makes a difference. “If God does not exist,” he contends, “then we must ultimately live without hope. If there is no God, then there is ultimately no hope for deliverance from the shortcomings of our finite existence.”1 These shortcomings Craig identifies as evil, aging, disease, and death, and because t...

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What Do We Mean By ‘God’?

If I were to tell you that a ghreasch exists, a look of confusion would undoubtedly come across your face. Without knowing what a ghreasch is, you have no possible way of comprehending the meaning of my statement. All you can gather from the information provided is that some unknown thing occupies a place somewhere in our physical universe. Now suppose I told you that this ghreasch cares deeply for you and is the most important thing in all of existence. Odds are good that you will try to imagine what this thing is...

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