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What's New on the Secular Web?

See also: Events & The News Wire

January 29, 2004

Added "An Easy Way of Destroying Cosmological Arguments" by Horia George Plugaru to the Agora section of the Kiosk.

Plugaru argues that most versions of the Cosmological Argument are useless as a proof of the existence of God.

January 20, 2004

Added "Talking Peace and Justice" by James A. Bartlett to the Agora section of the Kiosk.

The role of religion in promoting social change moves front-and-center on Martin Luther King Day. But how useful can religion really be?

January 15, 2004

Added "Reply to Guthrie" by Theodore M. Drange to the Modern Documents section of the Secular Web Library.

Theodore Drange responds to Shandon L Guthrie's critique, "Concerning Theodore Drange's Argument from Evil for the Non-existence of God" (Off Site). Drange finds Guthrie's essay "unclear," and contends that Guthrie "erred in many ways," including "misstating my views in many ways (and continuing such misstatements even in his concluding paragraph), ... in trying to argue that God (were he to exist) is unable to reduce human suffering, and ... in his attempt to formulate a divine desire that conflicts with God's desire to reduce human suffering."

January 12-13, 2004

Although it is actually alive and well, the Internet Infidels Discussion Forum is temporarily inaccessible for some users.

Due to a snafu (it's a long story) with the domain name registration, was dropped by some domain name servers, thus causing it to appear as if the Discussion Forum is down. The problem has been resolved, but it will take awhile for the "fix" to travel around to all of the domain name servers on the Net. We anticipate that all should be well for many users by late in the day (Pacific time) on the 13th, and for most users by late in the day (Pacific time) on the 14th, although the exact timing, of course, will be not unlike a so-called "act of God." In the meantime, please accept our apologies for the inconvenience.

January 7, 2004

Added "Hallucinatory Near-Death Experiences" by Keith Augustine to the Modern Documents section of the Secular Web Library.

Even if we disregard the overwhelming evidence for the dependence of consciousness on the brain, there remains strong evidence from reports of near-death experiences themselves that NDEs are not glimpses of an afterlife.

January 1, 2004

Feature article: "Christian Salvation" by B. Steven Matthies.

Ever wonder how you can be saved? Christians can't agree on the essentials, and the confusion is embarrassing. A survey of sixteen major denominations proves the point. [Editor's note: This article was first published in March 2002. It created quite a stir at that time. If you missed it then, don't miss it this time around.]

Book-of-the-Month: Contemporary Debates in the Philosophy of Religion, Michael Peterson and Raymond Vanarragon, Editors.

Newly published and highly recommended by Jeffery Jay Lowder, this book offers an overview of both the theistic and atheistic positions with regard to the key debates in modern philosophy of religion:
  • Is Evil Evidence against Belief in God?
  • Does Divine Hiddenness Justify Atheism?
  • Does Science Discredit Religion?
  • Is God's Existence the Best Explanation of the Universe?
  • Does Religious Experience Justify Religious Belief?
  • Is It Rational for Christians to Believe in the Resurrection?
  • Can Only One Religion Be True?
  • Does God Take Risks in Governing the World?
  • Does God Respond to Petitionary Prayer?
  • Is Eternal Damnation Compatible with the Christian Concept of God?
  • Is Morality Based on God's Commands?
  • Should a Christian Be a Mind-Body Dualist?

Video-of-the-Month: Firefly: The Complete Series.

An atheist hero, a beautiful cast, and a superb production... Five hundred years in the future, there is a whole new frontier, and the crew of the Firefly-class spaceship Serenity is eager to stake a claim on the action. They'll take any job to keep fuel in the tanks and food on the table. But things get a bit more complicated after they take on a passenger wanted by the new totalitarian Alliance regime. Now they find themselves on the run, desperate to steer clear of Alliance ships and the flesh-eating Reavers who live on the fringes of space.

See "What's New? " for past months and years.