The Official Cult Of Gnu Survey

Posted in Atheism, Quickies on  | 1 minute | 108 Comments →

Howdy all. Hopefully it’s as beautiful in your part of the world as it is in mine. So, here’s the skinny: I’m looking to compile a list of New Atheist-types for an upcoming project. Who do you see as a New Atheist worth exposing? The first people that come to my mind are obviously the obvious ones like Dawkins, PZ, Coyne, Harris, Carrier and the late Hitchens (can anyone explain why Dennett is always lumped in this category? Most of what I’ve seen from him seems rational, or, at least not blatantly irrational unlike the others, but maybe I just haven’t seen enough).

1. What would you list as the defining characteristics of particular New Atheists, and/or the New Atheist movement in general?

2. Who would you list as the most competent and/or entertaining critics of New Atheism, online or elsewhere?

3. What are some of the better New Atheist exposés you’ve read online?

Just What I Needed To Hear

Posted in Encouragement on  | 5 minutes | 28 Comments →

I’ve got a whole heap of posts brewing right now, but none of them are quite ready to pour. So, seeing as how I’ll be undergoing surgery Friday and probably unable to post until next week, I figured I’d at least throw something out there for readers to digest in the meantime.

A few weeks back, Matt left this comment, which contained a link to Victor Reppert’s blog, Dangerous Idea. I had seen the name around, but hadn’t spent any time on the blog. Since the link in Matt’s comment was directly related to our Responding To Universalism discussion, I had to investigate. What I found was one of the better Christian philosophy blogs around. I added it to my links sidebar, and have made a habit to check in semi-regularly. In a nutshell, I’m a fan of Victor’s approach: he has a tendency to parse through the details and clarify things, and—more importantly—he tends to let the reader think for themselves. Victor’s style is more, “having an intelligent discussion with oneself,” than, “let me interpret the facts for you then belittle you if you disagree,” the latter being unfortunately prominent amongst (a)theist blogs.

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Authority Effectively Undermined

Posted in Atheism, Blogosphere, Daylight Atheism, Religion, Responses on  | 7 minutes | 3 Comments →

I was cruising around the blogosphere this morning when I found this post at DaylightAtheism. Although I don’t necessarily share all of Haught’s conclusions as expressed in the source material, I felt Ebonmuse’s response was fraught with inconsistencies.

First on the list is the following peculiarity:

…Haught presumes for himself the right to judge which atheists are or are not sufficiently “serious”

Why should that be any sort of problem? After all, Ebonmuse certainly presumes which theists are sufficiently serious, for example, he says all that believe in demons are ignorant regardless of actual intelligence and should be unilaterally mocked. This makes Occam’s razor look more like a guillotine! As my heart goes out to the closet GLBT kid with a sternly homophobic and closed-minded dad, similar for the otherwise rational person who’s had experiences reasonably interpretable as psychic (‘psychic’ as in the Jungian sense of archetypal), spiritual or biblical in their ultimate nature. Such hasty generalization and harsh criticism in this regard can only effect cognitive dissonance, which is of little use in uncovering the truth.

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