Religion and the Verdict of History

Religion and the Verdict of History

To evaluate religion’s track record we need to specify our evaluative benchmarks and identify whether we are evaluating religion generically or a particular religion. A religion is a set of beliefs and practices, and my primary benchmark is this… More »

Has Religion Been on Balance Good or Bad for Humanity?

Has Religion Been on Balance Good or Bad for Humanity?

The question for this final column of the debate between Catholic and Atheist is this: Has religion been on balance good or bad for humanity? Alert readers may have noticed in previous columns that nearly every question contains a hidden assumption, or slant… More »

Is Political Evil Built Into Religion?

Is Political Evil Built Into Religion?

The great majority of us are free to practice or not religion as we choose. That has been rare in human history, as politicians have generally enjoyed using religion as a political tool, and as religious leaders have almost always tried to employ politics for religious purposes. More »

Is Religion Good or Bad for Politics?

Is Religion Good or Bad for Politics?

The wording of the question is charmingly misleading, akin to asking whether economic theory is good or bad for politics, without bothering to distinguish between the economic theory of the free market, which produced the industrial revolution, versus the economic theory of Stalinist Marxism… More »

Making Life Meaningful Without Religion

Making Life Meaningful Without Religion

The quest for a meaningful life comes naturally to us. As infants we delight in exploring the world and developing our powers — hearing and seeing and tasting, crawling, eye-hand coordination, vocalizing, and social interaction with parents, siblings, and family pets. More »

On Natural Morality and Religious Amoralism

On Natural Morality and Religious Amoralism

In my judgment, issues of morality are the most difficult in philosophy. They are intellectually challenging, as everything about the human condition is relevant to them, and they are emotionally gripping, as our highest values are always at stake. So … More »

On the Proofs of God's Existence

On the Proofs of God’s Existence

As we enter the third round of our debate series, our first major point of disagreement about religion has been identified – about the nature and legitimacy of faith. My view is that faith is a type of subjectivism – … More »