Can We Trust Our Senses?

Let me tell you a story.

I was twenty years old, and a junior in college. I was in one of Grove City’s required classes called Civilization and the Speculative Mind, a class about worldviews, philosophy, and Christian theology. I wrote my term paper for this class on why naturalism does not inevitably lead to nihilism. It was a response to the claims made by James W. Sire in the class textbook The Universe Next Door. He had made three “bridges” between naturalism and nihilism which I had set out to debunk. They were:

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How the Fine-Tuning Argument Made Me an Atheist

“The universe just seems to be so finely tuned.” “How can you look around at this world we live in and not believe that it was designed?” “Do you really believe that this all came about by chance?”

Whether you’re a theist or an atheist, it’s likely that you’ve either said or heard these things more times than you can remember. The argument for the fine-tuning of our universe is one of the most popular among apologists and counter-apologists, and for good reason. Not only can it include an appeal to emotion and experience, but the science of it all has fascinated great minds for centuries, including that of the late Stephen Hawking. So what really is the fine-tuning argument?

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A Simple Explanation of Occam’s Razor

In my last post within my Back to Basics series, I gave a breakdown of and an objection to the Kalam Cosmological Argument. In the post, I pointed out that William Lane Craig, the best known modern proponent of the argument, believes that Occam’s Razor backs up his claim that God is the simplest explanation of the beginning of the universe. I rebutted his points in that I believe that the Kalam Argument, and its ultimate claim—”God did it”—couldn’t even be saved by Occam’s Razor, because they were too simple.

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The Kalam Cosmological Argument

There are a handful of famous arguments for the existence of a god. Some have been around for centuries, and new arguments are popping up every day. One such argument is the kalam cosmological argument. A classic which has recently been re-polished and re-popularized, it has withstood the test of time in its field.

The kalam cosmological argument sounds a lot more complex than it really is. There’s not much more to it than a simple, yet flawed, syllogism of three steps. They are: Read more

On the Burden of Proof

When people find out that someone is an atheist, they usually have a lot of questions. I’ve seen, in my experience, that most of these questions take the offensive stance and are often accusatory. Atheists are used to hearing things like, “Where do you get your morals from?” and “Why do you hate God?” One of the most common of these quips is “How do you know for sure that there is no god?” which also takes the form of “Well, you can’t prove that God doesn’t exist, so disbelief is illogical.” These statements are the embodiment of the theist’s attempt to flip the burden of proof. Read more

Atheism vs. Agnosticism

When I was in church as a teenager, the pastor started a series of sermons and bible study lessons called Back to Basics, where he would teach the basic topics of the Lutheran faith. It was a good way to incorporate new members while getting everyone on the same page when it came to more complicated details of their beliefs. Borrowing from this idea, I’d like to do the same thing with this blog; I’ve covered a lot of atheism-related topics so far, like objective morality, Pascal’s Wager, and the paradoxes of prayer and free will. There are a lot of other topics, though, that I’ve only briefly touched on in other posts, but I’d like to spend some time going into more detail on them. The first topic in my Atheist Back to Basics series is going to be that of agnosticism and atheism. Read more

6 Contradictions of God

There are a lot of reasons to see Christianity as false. As an atheist, I usually have some semblance of a rebuttal for every argument I hear for the religion that everyone believes except me (or at least it feels that way). Of course, some arguments against Christianity are better than others, including “Science has disproved God” (sorry, but that can’t be proven or disproven) or “Jesus was copied from earlier deities like Osiris and Horus” (this is possible, but I’m not convinced by it). I’m generally not phased when an atheist argument like this falls through, because I feel as though there are others that simply cannot be refuted. Many of the solid arguments against the existence of the Abrahamic God involve the inherit contradictions of his character.

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The Argument from Objective Morality

I once wrote an essay on why a naturalistic worldview does not invariably lead to nihilism. In this essay, I argued that morality is objective with or without a god. I tried (so hard) to use this to make the case that there is a definite black-and-white law of right and wrong (yes, I used C.S. Lewis’ reasoning to make this point) within the human race, because I believed that without it, nihilism would ensue. I had been told once that anyone who is honest with herself and is a true nihilist would, in the end, commit suicide because of life’s overwhelming meaninglessness. It’s understandable that given this factor, I saw the link between naturalism and nihilism to be a deadly one, so I tried my very best to argue for atheistic objective morality.

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