Saturday, October 14, 2017

Atheists and Suffering

The belief that a living God would stop all suffering is consistent with the belief of most atheists that the possession of power comes with an obligation to impede free choices that might lead to suffering. That's why they are more likely than Christians to support totalitarian human governments. They think that's how God would behave if he exists, and therefore so should humans in positions of power.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Monday, October 9, 2017

Does Free Will Make Sense?

From now on, I’ll use character as an umbrella term that encapsulates all subjective reasons. Character makes us who we are. If anything gives us free will, character is it. But where does character come from? Let’s look at an example. Say I’m faced with a decision: I can eat an apple or I can eat an orange. I like oranges better, so I pick the orange. My decision is based on one subjective reason: my preference for oranges. This seems like a clear-cut case of free will in action. But things aren’t so simple. To show why, I’m going to ask a series of questions. First, why did I pick the orange? Say my response is, “I don’t know–I just prefer oranges. That’s just the way I am.” If that’s the case, my preference appears to be arbitrary. By my own admission I didn’t freely choose to prefer oranges, so how can my exercise of that preference be free? It can’t: if I was not the ultimate, original cause of my preference for oranges, then I am not now the ultimate, original cause of my choice of an orange. But what if I did choose to prefer oranges? Say I read a book a year ago that convinced me oranges are more environmentally sustainable than apples. Since I value environmental sustainability, I decided from then on to choose oranges over apples. Surely that choice makes my present choice of an orange free–right? Wrong. Once again, we must ask a question. This time it is: Why do I value environmental sustainability? Say my answer is, “I’m a moral person, and it’s immoral to destroy the environment.” Unfortunately, that leads to a new question: Why am I a moral person? If my response to this question is, “That’s just the way I am,” my decision is, as before, not a free one. If on the other hand my response is, “Because my parents taught me to be that way,” yet another question arises: Why did I accept my parents’ teachings? I won’t go further. A pattern is emerging: each “Why?” question about character yields a “That’s just the way I am” response or a further question. And since we haven’t made infinitely many decisions in our lives, “That’s just the way I am” will always come eventually. For us to have caused our characters–and therefore our actions–we would have had to have caused ourselves, which is impossible. The fact of the matter is: We are not the ultimate, original cause of our characters. And because we aren’t, we are not the ultimate, original cause of our actions. “Free will” does not make sense as a concept. It’s definition implies an impossibility.“Free Will” Does Not Make Sense As a Concept

Living Well in the Light of Death - NT Wright and Shelly Kagan at Yale

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Science vs God?

Bryan Enderle grew up in Modesto, CA though he now lives in Davis, CA with his wife, Peggy, and son, Isaac. Bryan received two BS degrees, in Chemical and Petroleum Engineering; an MA in Theology; and an MS and PhD in Chemical Engineering. Personally, he enjoys grappling with the topics of theology and science, both as individual and intersecting topics. Without arguing one way or the other, Enderle uses modern science to make certain fantastic aspects of a modern God more plausible. In doing so he creates a space where science and religion can coexist.

Unarmed is Slavery

Friday, October 6, 2017

NDE Research Proves Afterlife Exists l Dr Jeff Long & Lynn Fishman SSF-IIIHS

What are the common characteristics of a near death experience? Do we have to fear the life review? What is the difference between an out of body experience and a near death experience? What is the longest period of time someone has been clinically dead and resuscitated? What circumstances that led to an NDE or aspects of the NDE itself prove that consciousness exists out of the body? Does near death experiences differ in children versus adults? What is the usual age of children that report their NDE? How do children remember their NDE so many years and decades later? How does an NDE differ from a dream? What is the study methodology that Dr Long uses for his NDE research? How does our vision and our consciousness change when we are in the middle of an NDE? How does religion or culture affect the NDE that a person has? How does an NDE impact a person's life afterwards? How does love play a role in an NDE? How can health professionals help a patient or how can family help their loved one going through the dying process? How is it possible to see without one's eyes or without a body during an NDE? What happens to murders or pedophiles when they die?

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

How many Christians does it take to change a light bulb?

Charismatic: "Why, two, of course!" (Both hands are already in the air.)
Pentecostal: "10! One to change the bulb, and nine to pray to the holy ghost, against the spirit of darkness."
Presbyterians: "None. Lights will go on and off at predestined times."
Roman Catholic: "None. Candles only."
Baptists: "Nah, at least 15. One to change the light bulb, and three committees to approve the change and decide who brings the potato salad and fried chicken."
Episcopalians: "4. One to call the electrician, one to mix the drinks, and one to talk about how much better the old light bulb was, than the new one we're screwing on with the fourth."
Mormons: "5. One man to change the bulb, and four wives to tell him how to do it."
Unitarians: "We choose not to make a statement either in favor of or against the need for a light bulb. However, if in your own journey you have found that light bulbs work for you, that is fine. You are invited to write a poem or compose a modern dance about your light bulb for the next Sunday service, in which we will explore a number of light bulb traditions, including incandescent, fluorescent, 3-way, long-life and tinted, all of which are equally valid paths to luminescence."
Methodists: "Whether your light is bright, dull, or completely out, you are loved. You can be a light bulb, turnip bulb, or tulip bulb. Church wide lighting service is planned for Sunday. Bring bulb of your choice and a covered dish."
Nazarene: "6. One woman to replace the bulb while five men review church lighting policy."
Lutherans: "We believe in sunlight alone. 'Cause the Bible says that man shalt live off of the sunshine ALONE. You can't add on to the natural light which cometh through thine window, cause then it would taketh away from the sunlight."
Amish: "What is a light bulb?"

Sunday, August 13, 2017

What Happened in Charlottesville

This is what happened in Charlottesville, since media is incapable of reporting: -The Alt Right organized a peaceful assembly in Charlottesville called Unite the Right -The organizers lawfully obtained a permit to host this event -Wes Bellamy, the Vice-Mayor of Charlottesville, illegally revoked the permit for this event. Wes Bellamy is a known Leftist and is affiliated with the Black Panther Party, a Black supremacist organization -The ACLU successfully sued Charlottesville for violating the First Amendment, and a Federal judge ruled that the permit must be reinstated and the right to assemble honored -Unite the Right was scheduled to take place at 12:00pm today. At 11:30am, a heavily militarized police force illegally shut down the event, physically assaulting peaceful protesters with batons and tear gas. Several people were illegally arrested -While evacuating, many protesters were illegally assaulted by counter-protesters from Antifa and Black Lives Matter as the police stood by and did nothing. Antifa and BLM members were recorded throwing bricks at people, using pepper spray, and throwing molotov cocktails and tear gas -A terrorist drove his car straight in to a crowd of people, killing at least one. The state of Virginia declared a state of emergency with the National Guard on standby, and Charlottesville became the #1 news story in the world -The lying media intentionally portrayed this all in a way to make it look like the peaceful protesters were the perpetrators of the violence, rather than the victims, despite heavy video evidence to the contrary -This was an enormous breech of everyone's First Amendment rights, and a violent police-state suppression of free speech that is now being hidden by the lying media. A LOT of lawsuits are incoming, stay tuned!- Jeffery Hughes

Why Atheism is Vacuous

Sunday, April 30, 2017

The Trump Tax Plan (Big Tax Cuts)

Under Trump's plan, taxes on corporate profits go from 35% to 15%. They should be zero (like the Bahamas), but this is a good start. Taxes on capital gains go from 23.8% to 20%. Again, it should be zero (as with New Zealand), but it is a start. Rates for all individuals are lowered to three: 10%, 25%, and 35%. The standard deduction for individuals is doubled (politically brilliant). The estate tax and the alternative minimum tax is gone. Popular deductions for charitable giving and mortgage interest are preserved. The hare-brained idea of a “border adjustment tax” is toast.

All of this is wonderful, but the shining light of this plan is the dramatic reduction in taxes on corporate profits. The economics of this are based on a simple but profoundly true insight. Economic growth is the key to a good society. This is where good jobs come from. This is how technology improves. This is what gives everyone a brighter outlook on life. If you can imagine that your tomorrow will be more prosperous and flourishing than today, your life seems to be on track.-Trump’s Tax Plan Is Brilliant Politics and Even Better Economics
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