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Philosophy

On the Existence of Barbers and God

A popular advocacy video on YouTube attempting to rebut arguments from evil has been disseminating among Christian religious organizations for about a decade. In an attempt to show that arguments from evil for the nonexistence of God fail, the video likens them to arguments from (human) longhairs to the nonexistence of barbers. In this article, James R. Henderson refutes the suggested theodicy that an all-powerful, all-knowing, and perfectly good God allows apparently gratuitous evils to occur because God wants more human beings to come to Him of their own free will.

An Epicurean Approach to Secularizing Rites of Passage

Ritual is one of the most universally enjoyed human experiences, but it is often tangled up in supernatural claims that are insulting to our intelligence. Hiram Crespo, founder of the Society of Friends of Epicurus, discusses how the contractarian theory of Epicurean philosophy may be applied to the creation of rites of passage that retain their utility while being purged from superstition.

The Search for Meaning

We unsure people are doomed to be seekers, always searching for a meaning to life, but never quite finding one. Both the cosmos and our biosphere seem utterly indifferent to humanity, caring not a whit whether we live or die. Only a monster would arrange the monstrosities too often found in our world, and do nothing to save the victims. So common sense proves that the beneficent modern God is a fantasy who doesn't exist. We who are not orthodox religious believers can't find any underlying reason for existence. And we know that death looms ahead. So we must make the interval as enjoyable as possible, while we're here.

The Struggle Is the Story: A Philosophical Note on Mankind’s Mission

Is life meaningless without God and a divine plan? In this essay, Chege tackles the age-old question of whether the apparent lack of a divine plan for mankind necessarily leads to nihilism. He argues that man-made goals are capable of fulfilling the same role as the belief in a divine plan, but by promising a greater life in this world rather than in the next.

The Epicurean Revival

Hiram Crespo discusses "The Four Cures" which are at the heart of the doctrine of Epicurus of Samos. He invites you to study Epicurus, and to engage yourself and others in philosophical discourse. He promises that your life will be enriched as a result.

Secular Ethics: Seven Humanist Philosophers

Over the centuries, secular philosophers and humanist psychologists have been laying the foundations of secular ethics and humanist philosophy. In the 21st century, people have a choice: to follow the traditions of monotheistic religions or adopt the secular traditions of modern science and psychology, medicine and philosophy.

A Hypothesis: This Much I Know

"This is what I know. God is man-made. The Bible is composite literature composed by superstitious men. Religion is a human construct. This does not mean that I do not understand mankind's need to invent God or god(s) and religion. I can comprehend the human psychology of spirituality and the need for an ultimate reality. In Wittgenstein's words the concept of God and religion is a language game."

Beyond Gilgamesh and Camus: Our Open-ended Odyssey

We humans have long been haunted by the awareness of our own mortality. In the ancient Epic of Gilgamesh, the alewife Siduri warns Gilgamesh that his quest for eternal life is certain to end in failure. In a similar vein to Siduri, Albert Camus the famous French-Algerian existentialist thinker and author, depicted human existence as a futile labour of Sisyphus. In our view, the philosophy of Siduri and Camus is a philosophy of despair and surrender which is based on a view of human existence as a closed circle. We believe that the human journey is an open-ended and not a closed-ended affair, and that there's a good chance that the fate of our species lies not in the hands of the gods but in our own hands!

The Meaning of Life: Reflections on God, Immortality, and Free Will

Does reality include a supernatural realm, inhabited by God and, perhaps, other spiritual beings? Or is the familiar natural world all there is to it? If there is a supernatural world, how do we relate to it? Are we composite creatures with souls as well as bodies? Is it possible that our souls live on after our bodies are no more? Or is physical death the end? What is the nature of the free will that we commonly suppose ourselves to enjoy during our sojourn here on earth? Do we in fact have free will? Or are our lives little more than pointless scribbles on the fabric of the universe, as devoid of real significance as scratches on a piece of glaciated rock?

Is the Evidence for Theism Ambiguous by Divine Design?

A popular theistic "explanation" for why God would permit even a slim evidential basis for atheism goes something like this: "God does not give us absolute proof because this would work against our free will. He gives us just enough evidence so that we can find Him and just enough to reject His existence if that is our desire." But is this reasonable? Kuchar says not.

Review of Massimo Pigliucci’s Denying Evolution

"Denying Evolution is about a cultural war that is currently being fought between conservative and progressive worldviews, but this book is not apologetic. It describes the limitations of science as a philosophy and a human endeavor, yet continually stresses that science is a process that has contributed to the quality of life that our society enjoys today. Denying Evolution is an honest, insightful critique about science, its limitations, and the perpetrators of the creation-evolution debate. The book clearly outlines the strategies and motivation of those who seek to destroy science."

Death and the Meaning of Life

This essay considers whether life is inherently meaningless if death is the permanent end of our conscious existence and our lives are not part of a higher purpose. If a sentient God existed, Augustine argues, then the value that he would attribute to our lives would not be the same as the value that we find in living and thus would be irrelevant. Therefore, we must create our own meaning for our lives regardless of whether or not our lives serve some higher purpose.