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Books on Science and Religion #5: Victor Stenger’s God Hypothesis

Books on Science and Religion #5: Victor Stenger’s God Hypothesis

Nature in its essence is the embodiment of My Name, the Maker, the Creator. Nature is God’s Will and is its expression in and through the contingent world. Bahá’u’lláh June 29, 2014 Does God exist? If so, can we prove it? If not, can we prove it? Victor Stenger thinks we can. Like a creationist – or like a modern intelligent design advocate – he believes that we can scientifically prove – or disprove – the existence of God. He…

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Books on Science and Religion #4: More on Victor Stenger and God and the Folly of Faith

Books on Science and Religion #4: More on Victor Stenger and God and the Folly of Faith

Nature in its essence is the embodiment of My Name, the Maker, the Creator. Nature is God’s Will and is its expression in and through the contingent world. Bahá’u’lláh June 22, 2014 Our last blog looked at Victor Stenger‘s views on science and religion as described in God and the Folly of Faith: The Incompatibility of Science and Religion, one of his recent books. Stenger, a physicist by training, has been active in secular humanist and atheist circles for several…

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Books on Science and Religion #3: Victor Stenger’s God and the Folly of Faith: The Incompatibility of Science and Religion

Books on Science and Religion #3: Victor Stenger’s God and the Folly of Faith: The Incompatibility of Science and Religion

Nature in its essence is the embodiment of My Name, the Maker, the Creator. Nature is God’s Will and is its expression in and through the contingent world. Bahá’u’lláh June 15, 2014 The modern literature of science and religion is large, growing, diversely rich, and often challenging. It includes philosophical studies, polemical essays, histories, apologetics, surveys, college textbooks, massive reference books, and even incandescent bestsellers when writers like Richard Dawkins take up their pen to have their say. This is…

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Books on Science and Religion #2: Victor Stenger and Not By Design: The Origin of the Universe

Books on Science and Religion #2: Victor Stenger and Not By Design: The Origin of the Universe

Nature in its essence is the embodiment of My Name, the Maker, the Creator. Nature is God’s Will and is its expression in and through the contingent world. Bahá’u’lláh   June 8, 2014 The modern discussion of the relationship between science and religion – which I take to have begun in the 1990s with the revival of academic and intellectual interest in religion and in the belief in God – can be characterized as having three phases. In the first…

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Aristotle Redux: A Review of Thomas Nagel’s “Mind and Cosmos” Part 1

Aristotle Redux: A Review of Thomas Nagel’s “Mind and Cosmos” Part 1

A Review of Thomas Nagel’s “Mind and Cosmos” Part 1 of a review in three parts by Ian Kluge Starting with its title – Mind and Cosmos: Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature is Almost Certainly False – Thomas Nagel’s new book sparked controversy and invited attack from the scientific community. How many fingers can one man poke in how many eyes at the same time? In the title alone, he challenges materialism, the materialist-physicalist concept of nature and…

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Where the Conflict Really Lies: Science, Religion and Naturalism Part Two

Where the Conflict Really Lies: Science, Religion and Naturalism Part Two

Where the Conflict Really Lies: Science, Religion and Naturalism Part 2 of a review by Ian Kluge. Editors Note: In part 1, Ian introduced Alvin Plantinga’s important new book as follows: In his new book, Where the Conflict Really Lies: Science, Religion and Naturalism, Alvin Plantinga shows how misunderstandings about science have led to what are in reality pseudo-conflicts. He aims to show that “there is no [serious] conflict between Christian belief and science . . . [and that] there…

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Keeping the Baby — de Botton’s Religion for Atheists

Keeping the Baby — de Botton’s Religion for Atheists

Community, Identity, and Peace Alain de Botton plans to throw out the bathwater — but keep the baby. The author of  Religion for Atheists: A Non-believer’s Guide to the Uses of Religion thinks humanity will be better off if we toss the metaphysical superstitions encumbering all religions but keep the many insights and practices that are still beneficial for human development. In his view, ‘God’ was just one answer to questions about value, meaning, community, identity and peace (to name…

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The God Debates #3: Fine-tuning God

The God Debates #3: Fine-tuning God

Part 3 of a discussion and critique of John R. Shook’s The God Debates Let us look at one more example of Shook’s straw-man methodology. He says, “The basic ‘fine-tuning’ argument for god has this form: If god exists, then it is highly probable that this universe would permit life; The universe is organized to permit life; In the naturalistic “multiverse” theory it is not highly probable that the universe would permit life; It is more reasonable to accept the…

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The God Debates #2: Theology Beyond the World

The God Debates #2: Theology Beyond the World

Part 2 of a discussion and critique of John R. Shook’s The God Debates Behind the logical plausibility of God lies another argument Shook dismisses in The God Debates, namely, the “Theology beyond the World”(3) which argues that “god is the necessary condition for the universe, for its order, and for its intelligibility.”(4) He recognizes that this assertion appeals to the principle of sufficient reason which he takes seriously — except, of course, in this case. He calls this “the…

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The God Debates #1: Less Than Meets the Eye

The God Debates #1: Less Than Meets the Eye

Let’s start with the good news: The God Debates maintains a civil tone amid the often shrill abuse of the real-world God debates. Nothing like the late Christopher Hitchen’s somewhat hysterical contention that teaching children religion is equivalent to child-abuse;  no suggestion of Harris’s ominously totalitarian claim that even tolerating religious belief and freedom is intolerable; none of Dawkins’ withering scorn for philosophical texts and arguments he obviously hasn’t read and just as obviously doesn’t understand; and no sign of…

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