What's New on the Secular Web?
See also: Events & The News Wire
September 26, 2008
New in the Bookstore: When Prayer Fails: Faith Healing, Children, and the Law (2007) by Shawn Francis Peters.
Over the past century, hundreds of children have died after being denied the basic medical treatments furnished by physicians because of their parents' intense religious beliefs. The tragic deaths of these youngsters have received intense scrutiny from both the news media and public authorities seeking to protect the health and welfare of children. When Prayer Fails is the first book to fully examine the complex web of legal and ethical questions that arise when criminal prosecutions are mounted against parents whose children die as a result of the phenomenon known by experts as "religion-based medical neglect."
September 25, 2008
Significantly updated the Organizations pages.
Added Canadian Secular Alliance, Humanist Academy in Scotland, Society For Humanism (SOCH) Nepal, and Turan Dursun (Turkey) to the National Organizations page.
Added Nebraska Atheists, Edmonton Atheists (Alberta), Tucson Secular Families (Arizona), Humanist Association of San Diego (California), Atheists and Freethinkers of Contra Costa County (California), Humanist Association of Greater Philadelphia (Pennsylvania), The Jefferson Center (Oregon), Greenville Nontheists (South Carolina), Denver Atheists (Colorado), Great Southern Humanist Society (Mississippi), Seattle Atheists (Washington), Atheists of the New River Valley (Virginia), and Florence Nontheists (Alabama) to the Local Organizations page.
Added CFI On Campus - Michigan, Secular Alliance of IU (Indiana University), Cleveland State University Non-Prophets, Atheist Student Alliance (University of South Florida), Brown Freethought (Brown University), University of Melbourne Secular Society, University of Toronto Secular Alliance, Guelph Skeptics (University of Guelph), Queen's Secularists and Inquirers (Queen's University), Students for A Nonreligious Ethos (University of California Berkeley), Atheist Student Organization (Sacramento State University), Science & Knowledge Empowering People to Intelligently Choose (George Washington University), Bradley Skeptics (Bradley University), Secular Humanists on Campus (Eastern Carolina University), Atheist League of Vassar College, RIT Skeptics (Rochester Institute of Technology), Secular Student Organization (Dakota State University), Aberdeen University Secular Humanist and Atheist Society, and National Association of Philosophy Students (Nigeria) to the Student Organizations page.
September 17, 2008
New in the Bookstore: Godless: How an Evangelical Preacher Became One of America's Leading Atheists (2008) by Dan Barker.
After 19 years as an evangelical preacher, missionary, and Christian songwriter, Dan Barker "threw out the bathwater and discovered there is no baby there." Barker describes the intellectual and psychological path he followed in moving from fundamentalism to freethought. The four sections in Godless--Rejecting God, Why I Am An Atheist, What's Wrong With Christianity, and Life is Good!--include chapters on bible problems, the historicity of Jesus, morality, the Kalam Cosmological argument, the unbelievable resurrection, and much more.
September 16, 2008
This page was created and prefaced with an introduction to provide an answer to the question: What is the difference between naturalism and materialism? The short answer is that naturalism may countenance the existence of more than just physical stuff, such that if materialism turned out to be false, naturalism could still be true. Pluralistic naturalism is the naturalistic alternative to materialism; it maintains that there is at least one nonphysical sort of stuff in addition to the physical sort. What might that nonphysical sort of stuff be? Read the introductory primer to find out, and check out the linked essays to dig deeper.
September 14, 2008
In his latest book, There is a God, well-known philosopher and former-atheist Antony Flew lays out the four major arguments which convinced him that God exists. In this review, Nick Covington deals both with Flew's arguments and with Flew's criticisms of the "new atheists."
New in the Bookstore: The Comprehensible Cosmos: Where Do the Laws of Physics Come From? (2006) by Victor J. Stenger.
We now have mathematical models that are consistent with all observational data, including measurements of incredible precision, and we have a good understanding of why those models take the form they do. But the question arises: Where do the "laws" revealed by the mathematical models come from? Some conjecture that they represent a set of restraints on the behavior of matter that are built into the structure of the universe, either by God or some other ubiquitous governing principle. In this challenging, stimulating discussion of physics and its implications, physicist Victor Stenger disputes this notion.
September 11, 2008
Per the rules both debaters agreed upon ahead of time, both Richard and Jake now have 2 weeks to submit their opening statements for publication on the Secular Web.
September 5, 2008
Revised the About Us page to make our mission clearer, to explain what the Secular Web has to offer, to spell out why fulfilling our mission is important, to point out how Internet Infidels is unique among freethought organizations, and to let readers know how they can help us fulfill our goals.
Updated or added various entries on the FAQ concerning our purpose, why we define ourselves in terms of naturalism, how readers can support and assist us, our publishing philosophy, and our focus, among other things.
The Support Us page has been revised to succinctly explain the sort of work that goes into maintaining the Secular Web, and the Reviews page has been added to note published comments about Internet Infidels and the Secular Web, as well as select reader feedback.
September 4, 2008
New in the Kiosk: The Human Origin of the Bible: How Nicaea Defined God with a Vote (2008) by Gary Lenaire
"The main point is not the names of the religionists who edited the first Bibles; nor is it the dates that those events occurred on. My Christian critics attempt to distract you with such trivia in order to evade the real issue here. What does matter is how the church fathers produced what is called "God's Word." - Gary Lenaire
September 1, 2008
The original text of the Yale lecture incorrectly used the word "hearsay" at one point and left out the rationale for one of it's claims. The text remains unchanged as historical, but the necessary clarification is now added in the related footnote.